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Philip Meador of Mobile has joined the USA Mitchell Cancer Institute staff as practice director.
The position carries responsibility for ensuring that patients have the best possible experience — being seen in a timely manner, that staffing is adequate and appropriate, and that relationships with referring physicians are strong.
In short, his job is to make sure that MCI’s 11 physicians, infusion centers and radiation oncology centers have what they need to treat patients.
The setting and the job itself seem very nearly perfect to Meador.
A Mobile native who graduated from McGill-Toolen Catholic High School in 2001, Meador followed his brother Sellors’ footsteps from McGill to The Citadel. His brother majored in biology and chemistry with a strong pre-med preparation; Philip majored in accounting.
His brother went to medical school; Philip went into investment banking — specifically the sell-side, mergers and acquisitions. “The firm focused on middle market work — selling companies with enterprise values between $50 million and $500 million. We were generalists, so I learned about a lot of different industries,” Meador says. After the traditional two years there, he moved to a private equity firm, once again handling acquisitions, but this time for a firm that ran the companies it purchased until reselling them
“I always wanted to come home, but Atlanta was the closest I could get in that line of work,” Meador says.
In the meantime, his brother began practicing medicine in Mobile, and Meador envied his choice to enter health care.
So when he was ready for graduate school, he chose the University of Alabama at Birmingham for its health care management program.
Surprisingly, a lot of his earlier work experience turned out to be beneficial, especially when he interned with Emory Healthcare in Atlanta, working on its project to purchase physician practices.
After completing his master’s, he worked at Winship Cancer Institute, a National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center. And he’s pleased that MCI is collaborating with UAB so that MCI can earn NCI credentials as part of a consortium.
And that, in turn, has helped him prepare to manage a practice, as he’s now doing at MCI.
But the best thing about being at MCI is the patients, he says. He said he finds it rewarding to play any role in the process when patients start treatment and begin to improve.
“Everyone is so involved and engaged,” Meador says. A patient seeing a doctor in most other settings may spend only a short time with the practice. But a cancer center patient is deeply involved for months, allowing plenty of time for patients and staff to get to know one another.
He loves to get out and meet those patients and hear about their experiences. He listens for anything they feel needs improvement and passes along accolades to staff when he hears good reports.
“I’m certainly not treating patients, but I still enjoy talking with them; I enjoy the interaction.”
And he’s always looking for ways that MCI can meet their needs even better.
Meador’s wife, Elizabeth, also works in health care management, with Cigna HealthSpring’s Medicare Advantage insurance program.
Outside of work, Meador is active at St. Ignatius Catholic Church, in a Mardi Gras organization and loves fishing in the Gulf and hunting near Monroeville.
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