Effective today, William “Bill” Sheahan begins serving as the new chief innovation officer and a vice president of MedStar Health, as well as the executive director of the MedStar Institute for Innovation (MI2). In these roles, he is the executive responsible for leading MedStar Health in catalyzing, fostering, and scaling innovation to advance health. He reports to Ken Samet, the president and chief executive officer of MedStar Health, and serves on the MedStar Health leadership team, a group of top leaders across the system that includes our corporate executive team, entity presidents, and our corporate and operational leadership.
Sheahan joined MedStar Health in 2013. He first served as the executive director of the MedStar Simulation Training & Education Lab, a team of nearly 100 experts that creates and deploys a blended learning model of interactive online training, virtual and hands-on high-fidelity simulation, and continuing professional education products used at MedStar Health and by healthcare organizations in more than 40 states. He later became the founding executive director of the MedStar Telehealth Innovation Center, which was established in 2017 to support and coordinate telehealth activities across MedStar Health at system scale, and grew these services exponentially in response to COVID-19. He also served as the first deputy director of the MedStar Institute for Innovation, representing MI2 in a wide range of critical systemwide initiatives that required deep innovation expertise, such as the recent effort to establish COVID-19 associate vaccination scheduling systems and related logistics. Earlier in his career, Sheahan held leadership roles in academic research and public safety organizations, including a decade spent as a chief and executive director of emergency medical services in New York.
Sheahan succeeds Mark Smith, MD, the first executive Samet appointed to lead innovation for the MedStar Health system. Also effective today, Dr. Smith begins a new role as the innovator-in-residence at the MedStar Institute for Innovation. This new role builds upon his 26 years of service to MedStar Health, which also include leading emergency medicine at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, MedStar Emergency Physicians, and Georgetown University School of Medicine, the MedStar Health medical education and university partner.
MI2 was chartered in July 2009 by Samet under Dr. Smith’s leadership, and it grew from a small and mostly part-time team into one of the largest and most diverse innovation centers in health care today. During his tenure, MI2 would create, “greenhouse,” and scale numerous operations critical to MedStar Health’s mission today. These include the MedStar Simulation Training & Education Lab, MedStar Telehealth Innovation Center, and MedStar Health National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare, with the latter now housed in MedStar Health Research Institute. In addition to establishing these full-scale innovation operations, MI2 also created nationally-recognized external alliances, built connections to the broader healthcare startup community, and fostered an ethos of “thinking differently” across the MedStar Health organization. MI2 produced annual innovation forums, attended by hundreds of MedStar Health associates, to ignite innovation energy across the healthcare system. Dr. Smith is widely recognized for leading MI2 in developing deep technical capabilities and creating adaptable infrastructure in “white spaces” where others have not gone before.