Visionary – Gary Honts


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When Gary Honts, CEO and president of JFK Memorial Hospital, recruits physicians, he sells them on the hospital’s superior quality as well as the resort lifestyle they can enjoy in the Coachella Valley.

“At JFK, quality is second to none,” he says. “And one of our best recruitment tools is the quality of life in the desert. There’s great weather, a ‘big city in a little city’ environment, and access to metro areas, beaches, and skiing.”

Quality of life also attracts patients. “The living environment is really exceptional, and it also makes a great healing environment, with the care and passion that physicians and nurses have, the peaceful setting, and great climate,” he says.  

Recruiting doctors improves the overall economy. “Every time we recruit a physician, there’s a high-income person coming into the community, and one who gets involved in the community,” Honts says.

Looking to the next generation, JFK partners with area high schools to provide internships, job shadowing, and career days. “We have nursing students who rotate through our clinical areas, and 40 percent of our nurses have degrees from College of the Desert,” he says.

Honts notes that there are “lots of opportunities for physicians in the early or middle stages of a career to come here, get established, and have a thriving practice.

“As the valley continues to grow, and the baby boomers continue to age,” he continues, “JFK will ensure the healthcare needs are met.”

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