Dr. Ram Raju, President and CEO of NYC Health + Hospitals, today announced the appointment of Israel Rocha, Jr. as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NYC Health + Hospitals/ Elmhurst in Queens. Mr. Rocha’s expertise in hospital operations, legislative affairs, and federal and state funding programs will aid the NYC Health + Hospitals Vision 2020 transformation goals toward financial stability and growth.

“Mr. Rocha’s experience working with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment Projects (DSRIP) as well as his knowledge of the workings of the federal government make him an important addition to our team as we confront policy shifts in Washington and work toward building more support for our essential public health care system,” said Dr. Raju.

Mr. Rocha was the Chief Executive Officer of Doctors Hospital at Renaissance (DHR) in Edinburg, Texas, a 513-bed facility which is comparable to Elmhurst’s size with 545 beds. While at DHR he led key initiatives that helped the hospital transition from a general acute care hospital into a comprehensive medical and teaching center. Prior to becoming CEO, Rocha served as the Government, Public and Corporate Affairs Officer at DHR. He also worked for 10 years at the U.S. House of Representatives.

Rocha is a South Texas native who graduated from Columbia University.

“I am so excited to be back in New York City where I first prepared for my career and to join NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst during a time of positive transformation in the public health care system,” said Rocha. “While we are facing challenges, the opportunities to better serve this very diverse neighborhood and provide the best possible patient experience is energizing. I hope to lend my expertise in building support for the important mission we serve and making community connections to grow our reach and spread wellness.”

During Rocha’s tenure at Doctors Hospital at Renaissance he led his team to successfully secure over $160 million in funding from CMS and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission through the DSRIP program. Funded programs included: the development of four residency programs, transitional care clinics geared at reducing 30-day readmissions, care clinics for indigent and uninsured individuals, diabetic prevention education programs, the development of a Maternal Fetal Medicine program and creation of a robust partial hospitalization program to meet behavioral health needs.

“Mr. Rocha is an impressive advocate and leader in the health care field who will bring new ideas to our transformation from a hospital-centric system to an ambulatory, outpatient-centric system,” said Richard Gannotta, Senior Vice President of Hospitals.