OTTUMWA — After a three-month search and as the hospital battles controversy, Ottumwa Regional Health Center has hired its next chief executive officer.
William Kiefer will take the lead role of the hospital immediately, ORHC stated in a press release Thursday afternoon. Kiefer had served in the interim role since late November when the hospital parted ways with Dennis Hunger.
The announcement comes two weeks after police and hospital officials confirmed a nurse practitioner had been found to have sexually assaulted at least nine female patients at the hospital.
Police made the discovery when they were investigating why 27-year-old Devin Michael Caraccio died at ORHC on Oct. 15, 2022. During that investigation, they found videos and photographs on Caraccio's phone that showed him sexually assaulting sedated or unconscious patients at the hospital in 2021 and 2022.
Caraccio was a medical staff provider at the hospital at the time of his death. An autopsy determined he died of an accidental overdose, police said.
Kiefer comes to Ottumwa from Canyon Vista Medical Center in Arizona, where he was the chief operating officer. He is no stranger to leadership roles in other communities as well, particularly in the southwest, as he was the CEO and chief nursing officer (CNO) at OmniPoint Health in Anahuac, Texas, Marias Medical Center in Shelby, Montana, and Rehoboth McKinley Christian Health Care Services in Gallup, New Mexico.
“I am honored to be able to stay here in Ottumwa and grow with this team and community,” Kiefer said. “I’ve learned so much about ORHC and this region the last several weeks, and I know we have many opportunities to become an even better workplace and support our patients and their families in new ways. I’m looking forward to meeting more people in Ottumwa and surrounding communities and working with our employees, providers, board, and partners to explore our opportunities to grow and advance our mission of making communities healthier.”
Kiefer also held leadership and clinical positions at Texas hospitals, including Red River Regional in Bonham, Texas, and Sierra Medical Center in El Paso.
The chair of the hospital's board of trustees said Kiefer's duties will include "address any lingering issues" with the hospitals.
“Our board is delighted to welcome William to ORHC,” said Eric Carlson, chair of the ORHC Board of Trustees. “After a fairly extensive search and review of potential candidates for the position of CEO for ORHC, we are proud that William accepted the offer to lead the hospital in its quest to further strengthen its development of new and ongoing medical practice opportunities, and address any lingering issues in providing the utmost level of compassion and care to those whom it serves.”
Kiefer holds a Bachelor of Science in both microbiology and nursing from University of Texas at El Paso, and a Master of Business Administration from University of Phoenix. He received a Doctor of Nursing Practice focusing on executive healthcare leadership from Texas Tech University, and he also received recognition from the American Nurses Credentialing Center as a Nurse Executive — Advanced for his dedication and knowledge of nursing and hospital leadership.
Kiefer has served as vice president of the Texas Medical Foundation Executive Board and is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives, a National Rural Health Association (NRHA) Healthcare Fellow, a Texas Organization for Rural and Community Hospitals (TORCH) Healthcare Fellow, and an active member of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing.
Kiefer and his wife Jasmine have been married for more than 20 years and have three children, Sofie and twins Madison and Ethan. He enjoys serving actively in both church and civic organizations, including the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
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