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SEATTLE – (Aug. 24, 2015) – Virginia Mason Chairman and CEO Gary S. Kaplan, MD, is No. 15 on the annual list of the 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare, announced today by Modern Healthcare magazine. Last year he was ranked No. 36.

This is the seventh time Dr. Kaplan has made the national publication’s elite roster of Most Influential People. The list is determined by the magazine’s readers and editors, with each group’s vote accounting for 50 percent toward the ranking. See the complete list online at 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare.

“This national recognition is a testament to Dr. Kaplan’s visionary leadership that has helped establish Virginia Mason as a pacesetter in innovation that is transforming health care,” said Jim Young, chair, Virginia Mason Health System and Virginia Mason Medical Center Boards of Directors.

In addition to serving as chairman and CEO of Virginia Mason since 2000, Dr. Kaplan is a practicing physician and chair of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement Board of Directors. He is a founder of Health CEOs for Health Reform and a member of the National Patient Safety Foundation Board of Directors.

In April, Dr. Kaplan was named one of the 50 Most Influential Physician Executives and Leaders in Healthcare by Modern Healthcare magazine for the 10th straight year.

Under Dr. Kaplan’s guidance, Virginia Mason has earned an international reputation for innovation, quality and safety. In 2002, the organization embraced the lean manufacturing principles of the Toyota Production System as its management methodology for eliminating waste, controlling cost, and improving quality, safety and the total patient experience. More than 5,000 people from 20 nations have since participated in Virginia Mason Production System (VMPS) seminars offered by the non-profit Virginia Mason Institute. Last month, Virginia Mason was chosen by the National Health Service (NHS) of England to implement VMPS processes at NHS hospitals to improve care quality, patient safety and operational efficiency.

About Virginia Mason
Virginia Mason, founded in 1920, is a nonprofit regional health care system in Seattle that serves the Pacific Northwest. Virginia Mason employs 6,000 people and includes a 336-bed acute-care hospital; a primary and specialty care group practice of more than 460 physicians; regional medical centers throughout the Puget Sound area; and Bailey-Boushay House, the first skilled-nursing and outpatient chronic care management program in the U.S. designed and built specifically to meet the needs of people with HIV/AIDS. Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason is internationally recognized for its breakthrough autoimmune disease research. Virginia Mason was the first health system to apply lean manufacturing principles to health care delivery to eliminate waste, lower cost, and improve quality and patient safety. Virginia Mason website:

To learn more about Virginia Mason, please visit or follow @VirginiaMason on Twitter. To learn how Virginia Mason is transforming health care and to join the conversation, visit our blog at

Media Contact:
Michelle Peterson
Virginia Mason Media Relations
(206) 583-6581

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