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Home / Business / Kaiser Permanent CEO Bernard Tyson dies unexpectedly at age 60

Kaiser Permanent CEO Bernard Tyson dies unexpectedly at age 60



Bernard Tyson, Kaiser Permanente

David A. Grogan | CNBC

Kaiser Permanent Chairman and Chief Executive Bernard Tyson died unexpectedly on Sunday, the health care giant announced. One of the nation's leading health care leaders, Tyson was 60.

He rose through the ranks over a 30-year career at Kaiser to become CEO in 2013. During his tenure, the integrated health care and health insurance giant grew from 9 million members, with more than 1

74,000 employees, to serve more than 12 million members with a workforce of 218,000. Under his leadership, the nation's largest health insurance system became a leading advocate in the movement to improve care and benefits in the United States

His sudden demise triggered an outflow of memories from other health care leaders. [19659002] "Bernie was a good friend and reliable peer, and I'm so sad about his passing away," said Larry Merlo, CEO of CVS Health, adding, "I will miss Bernie's eager mind and good nature, as well as his unique ability to bring together people from all walks of life around a unique goal of making health care better for all Americans. "

" Bernie was a visionary leader with a passion for health, quality care and serving those in need, "Ceci said Connolly, president and CEO of the Alliance of Community Health Plans. "His loss is a loss to anyone who strives to improve the quality of care and coverage of the US health care system."

"He really & # 39; spoke" in his concern about making health care not just a right, but something that is reasonable and centered on the vast diversity of patients, "said Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California, the agency that runs the Affordable Care Act in the Golden State.

Tyson's recent push has been in the area of ​​social determinants of health, economic and social issues in low-income communities that negatively impact health patients. Last spring, Kaiser launched a $ 200 million fund to help solve some of these Bay Area problems, half of which would address affordable housing and homelessness.

"We are here every day making sure we provide coverage. We have all kinds of financial assistance programs for our members … so our incentives are all aligned with the benefits and well-being of the community for the whole community," Tyson explained on CNBC's "Closing" Bell "last week, after an appearance at the network's At Work Summit in San Francisco.

Tyson served on the boards of the American Heart Association and Salesforce.com, helping to manage the World Economic Forum's Global Challenge on the Future of Health.

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff called Tyson an inspirational leader, tweeted Sunday, "A light in this world has let go … I will always remember him with love in my heart."

Kaiser Permanente did not reveal the cause of Tyson's sudden death. On Saturday, the executive meeting had appeared at an Afro Tech event in Oakland, California, and tweeted out photos of the collection.

Tyson is survived by his wife Denise Bradley-Tyson and three sons.

On Sunday, Kaiser Permanent's Board of Directors appointed Gregory Adams, Executive Vice President and Group President as interim Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

"The Board has full confidence in Greg Adams & # 39; s ability to lead Kaiser Permanente through this unexpected transition," said Edward Pei, Kaiser Chairman of the Executive Committee in a statement.

See: Bernard Tyson on managing a billion dollar digital transformation


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