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Improving patient satisfaction is leader’s goal: Joliet resident earns Pillar Award
Hinsdale – Joliet resident Kelly Soto, director of patient access at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital, believes that employee satisfaction results in patient satisfaction. Numbers back up her claim; under Soto’s leadership, patient registration wait times at the hospital have decreased significantly.

“When I started working here, patients waited an average of 15 minutes just to get into the booth to register,” Soto said. “Now the average is under five minutes. And the feedback we’ve been getting from patients indicates there has been a huge increase in patient satisfaction.”

For this commitment to her staff and to Adventist Midwest Health’s mission of extending the healing ministry of Christ, Soto was one of five leaders to receive the organization’s pillar award at Adventist Midwest Health’s leadership development institute.

Alan Schneider, Adventist Hinsdale Hospital’s chief operating officer, says that compliments and thank you letters indicate “the positive and lasting impressions on our patients” that has occurred under Soto’s direction.

“Kelly has set goals for lowering patient registration times and she remains actively involved in improving patient flow at our campus registration and at our off sites,” said Janice Hagensicker, regional senior vice president/chief financial officer, Soto’s supervisor. “And anyone who knows Kelly knows she makes work fun. She uses a variety of methods, like Elvis sunglasses and candy bars, to engage her team and the rest of us.”

Soto has worked for the organization for nearly three years. She oversees 45 employees in the main lobby, in outpatient, emergency room and off site registration, and in financial counseling. Her leadership began with making her staff aware of the importance of goals.

“The staff wanted to make improvements and they have worked hard, they are surpassing goals,” Soto said. “And I believe in rewards. We celebrated Patient Access Week with an Elvis party. We even had peanut butter and banana sandwiches.”

Soto studied interior design at the International Academy of Design. She entered the healthcare industry in 1992 when she began working for a third party administrator. She worked at two area hospitals in managing registration and patient access before joining Adventist Hinsdale Hospital. She believes that Adventist Hinsdale Hospital “lives its mission of extending the healing ministry of Christ.”

Soto and her husband, David, live in Joliet and are the parents of a seven-year-old daughter, Riley. Soto grew up in Downers Grove where her parents Fred and Sally Boland still reside.
Pillar award nominations were solicited from Adventist Midwest Health’s senior leadership team. To be eligible for an award, leaders must demonstrate their commitment to the organization’s standards of behavior: sense, help, acknowledge, respect and explain. They must also demonstrate measurable results on the quarterly goals set for their departments. These goals are organized under the seven categories, or pillars, of spiritual life, people, clinical, service, community, growth, and stewardship.

One pillar award winner is chosen from each of the organization’s four suburban hospitals and a fifth winner is chosen from among the organization’s non-hospital programs and shared services support departments. Pillar awards will be presented at the organization’s quarterly leadership development institutes, held in January, April, July and October.