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Alumni Spotlight: Matthew McCann

Alumni Spotlight: Matthew McCann ‘85

Time to shine a spotlight on another individual who is making a difference in his community!

Matthew (Matt) McCann is the Manager for Clinical Informatics/Performance Improvement at Ochsner Health in New Orleans, Louisiana. Matt oversees one hospital and three clinics and has served at Ochsner Health for nearly 10 years. In addition to working full time, Matt is in graduate school for Healthcare Administration.

As a manager for clinical informatics and performance improvement, Matt is responsible for overseeing anything that involves analytics, automation and smart adoption of transformational technology in healthcare with nursing/medical practice tenants in mind.

Since COVID-19 hit in mid-March, Matt has been working 12-16 hour days, 6 days a week to ensure safety and security for all his coworkers and patients. Early on, he was working in incident command, expanding the ICU, re purposing PACU, Same Day Surgery, and endoscopy to meet the needs of the patients. When the hospital was down to one ventilator left, with coding patients on the floor being taken to the Emergency Department, rather than ICU, Matt said he had never been so deeply and profoundly concerned. On that day, he wrote Senator, Sherrod Brown for help. That same day, Warner Thomas, Ochsner System CEO, Mike Hulefield, COO, and Richard Guthrie, MD came to the rescue, and emergency plans were made to transfer patients to outlying Ochsner hospitals with capacity, and ventilators. This happened in minutes, not hours. Likewise, Matt was on the State of Louisiana DHH, ESF 8, Emergency Planning Dashboard, coordinating information up the chain of command to the state. ICU capacity increased by 50% and many of their nurses were retrained for ICU care. Ipads were purchased to allow patient and family virtual visits and a team of volunteers were formed to assist in these virtual visits.

Matt is extremely proud of his Ochsner team. From the EVS workers, to the Innovation Ochsner, to the Physicians and Data scientists, as they battled this devastating event. They operated like a well-oiled machine and the level of leadership he witnessed was spectacular. He noted transparency and trust with leadership was huge.

Matt believes Hurricane Katrina in 2005 better prepared their Louisiana hospitals for this pandemic. After Katrina, emergency management was no longer taken lightly. They learned about preparation, crowd control and having resources available. Katrina taught them what not to do. “We have very strong people here”, said Matt.

Matt continues to work long hours while taking night classes. He said the second wave has increased volume of cases but severity of illness and mortality has decreased.

Thank you, Matt, for all your sacrifice and hard work! What another incredible story that speaks to our #CapFam values!