"Major hospitals today require chief medical officers who can lead large teams of physicians in producing the highest-quality care and the most effective delivery of services," he adds.
So, despite the controversy over Smith, the hospital is looking for a physician, but not necessarily one with a current medical license. On one level, Crowther's decision shows a stubbornness and reluctance to give in to criticism about Smith.
By not having a licensed physician in a leadership role, however, the decision may continue to generate criticism of the hospital over issues such as patient care and malpractice that critics say could be impacted without a licensed physician in charge.
On another level, the CEO's decision reinforces the evolving nature of healthcare, in which some hospitals are looking as much at the business component of hospital leadership, as well as at the clinical piece. Crowther is clear on that.
"We are analyzing physicians who also have training in medical management, including those who have MBA degrees," he adds. "Our next CMO will have superb credentials and share our operational vision for excellence and teamwork in a patient-centered environment."