Testimonials from Executive Health Patients
Read what some executives have to say about the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Executive Health Program.
Seeing the Big Picture
World-class health care, in Wisconsin? Just ask Tod Gimbel.
|Gimbel was born and raised in Milwaukee. But for much of his 25-year career in business, he has worked elsewhere: Chicago, Miami, Washington, D.C. With transfers and steady moves up the corporate ladder, it wasn’t always easy for Gimbel, at 50, to keep tabs on his health.|
“With access to hundreds of medical specialists and subspecialists, we are the best source for executive health in the area. Accept no substitutes.”
So during a visit to family here, Gimbel entered the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Executive Health Program. “In one day, I had all my tests and the full consultation with the doctor,” he says. That doctor, dedicated full time to the program, is Robert Gleeson, MD. Says Gimbel: “’Dr. Bob sees the big picture, with the most current diagnostic technologies.”
The quality of the diagnostics hit home. One of the tests showed something suspicious in Gimbel’s colon. A number of polyps were found, and it was recommended he have his colon removed. “Thanks to the team in Milwaukee, I was well-informed, aware of the condition, its seriousness, and the recommended time I had to get the surgery done.”
A timeline was particularly important to Gimbel because a major change was about to take place in his career. He had just started a new job in Singapore as Head of Corporate Affairs, Asia Pacific Division at Levi Strauss.
Well before his start date, Gimbel had the surgery. “Dr. Bob and his team did all the follow-through to help me get the right treatment. I am comfortable using Milwaukee as my base for medical service.”
Firsthand Knowledge and Honest Discussion
A wise company encourages its employees at all levels to take charge of and improve their health. And from a business standpoint, such wellness programs have proved to lower health care costs and enhance individuals’ lives. MGIC, a Milwaukee-based mortgage financing company, offers a wellness program with incentives and a growing participation rate. The commitment is initiated from the top.
|CEO Curt Culver sets a personal example by watching what he eats and exercising regularly. He also goes the extra mile with an in-depth annual assessment from the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Executive Health Program, and has done so for years.|
“Exam days are set up like a well-run machine. Don’t bring reading material. Do bring your questions.”
The assessment includes a thorough face-to-face with the program’s staff physician, Robert Gleeson, MD. “It is the best health discussion I’ve ever had,” he says of the 90-minute consultation that follows the battery of essential diagnostic tests performed earlier in the day.
He credits Dr. Gleeson with his longtime experience as a corporate physician for large Milwaukee company: “Let’s face it, everyone runs the same kind of tests” in a routine physical, but according to Culver, “Dr. Bob” and his firsthand knowledge of the high-pressure life of today’s executive are unique. He offers an “honest discussion and brings a big-picture perspective.”
As a result, Culver has “kicked things up” in his own exercise routine, adding a daily walk in addition to several water sports. “You can’t cram fitness into a weekend workout.”
A move to a new city for a new position at the upper-management level equals a triple-whammy of pressure for an executive. Such was the case for Donna Martin, late of St. Louis, a senior human resources executive who was in Milwaukee working for a major manufacturer.
|Most welcome packets don’t spell out the best health care for your particular needs and schedule. Fortunately for Martin, she has access to the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Executive Health Program.|
“Borderline health issues are not borderline here.”
From a corporate viewpoint, Ms. Martin values the emphasis on preventive care, which supports productivity and lowers health care costs. “It’s the right program for the right reasons, done in the right way.”
Martin herself has no major health issues. Yet she values the hour-plus consult spent with the program’s director, Robert Gleeson, MD, which focuses on staying that way. “When you’re involved with an important project that requires 70 to 80 hours a week of work, it’s easy to fall off the exercise wagon,” says Martin. “Dr. Bob doesn’t lecture. We discuss how to adjust.”
Having the might of a physician staff of 700 is a welcome bonus. Shortly after the move to Milwaukee, Martin’s husband needed a doctor quickly. Program staff was able to make an informed referral, recommending a readily available Medical College of Wisconsin specialist.
Going One Step Farther
Even for a healthy person, some tweaking in the wellness regimen may be in order. In Mike Cascio’s case, one extra little step resulted in a slight but important change.
|Cascio, owner and president of Cascio/Interstate Music in New Berlin, is a firm believer in preventive health. He works out regularly and watches what he eats. Yet despite his dedication and because of genetics, Cascio’s cholesterol numbers were not ideal, and he takes a daily cholesterol-lowering medication.|
“Our business is your health. Just like any good business practice, we have goals: maximizing efficiencies, minimizing risk.”
Feeling very physically fit and at the “peak of health,” Cascio participated in the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Executive Health Program. The exam day includes a battery of essential diagnostic tests such as a chest X-ray, performed within an executive friendly six-hour timeframe. It also includes an in-depth face-to-face with the program’s physician Robert Gleeson, MD.
A discussion ensued about the patient’s cholesterol levels. Dr. Gleeson suggested doing one more blood test; this was done onsite. Later, results in hand, he indicated some prescription tweaking might be in order.
With the change in medication, Cascio realized better, lower numbers on a follow-up cholesterol test. Says Cascio: “The program is definitely more thorough than others. Dr. Bob is very proactive about health, like I am, and goes one step further. The extra test was well justified.”
Focus on Stress and Warning Signs
Rand McNally, CEO & President of HB Performance Systems Inc., knows only too well the stresses that many executives experience. Managing one’s health is sometimes an afterthought and difficult when extensive travel time and appointments abroad are part of the job. “We’re all so darn busy,” says the head of the Mequon-based company, an international manufacturer of braking systems.
|Enter the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Executive Health Program. The program offers a comprehensive yearly exam with essential tests in a convenient six-hour format. Mr. McNally makes it available to HB’s top executives and sets an example by undergoing the yearly assessment himself.|
“Focused attention – that’s what you can expect. Nothing less.”
The three-hour turnaround for test results allows us “to maximize our time,” McNally says. Because the focus is on stresses and warning signs unique to high-level executives, the program is a proactive one that works in concert with the executive’s personal physician, and specialists if need be.
The concept works. In fact, there’s a saying around HB headquarters: With a thumbs-up from the program’s physician Robert Gleeson, MD, the HB patient is “good to go for another 40,000 miles,” McNally says. That’s reassuring news for the executive, his family and the company.
McNally’s encouragement has paid off personally. One of the company’s younger executives had a two-week window in the States before returning to an HB satellite office in Taiwan. At the urging of McNally, he shoehorned in his Froedtert & the Medical College assessment. Dr. Gleeson subsequently diagnosed diabetes in the 30-year-old, an avid athlete whose only complaint had been blurry vision. That executive was McNally’s oldest son.
Doing It Right
It is good to be treated well. It’s even better to be treated graciously.
|Jim Ruffolo, president of Burger Boat Company of Manitowoc, experienced the latter with the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Executive Health Program. He is a convert.|
“The end result? You’ll understand your health status like you do a financial statement.”
For Ruffolo, the superior customer service of the program was evident from the first phone call he placed to make an appointment. It was answered in two rings by the “very friendly” examination liaison. That same helpful person met Ruffolo in the parking lot on his exam day and became his attentive chaperone for six hours, escorting him to a series of diagnostic tests that started on time, without a hitch.
The day was capped off by a productive 90-minute consultation with a physician “who really listened to my issues.” That doctor is Robert Gleeson, MD. Besides being a great listener, he has the knowledge – over 25 years working with the corporate executive.
Ruffolo has made several visits to the Froedtert & the Medical College campus since his initial visit. On each occasion, “I have been equally well treated.”
He knows from experience. For years, Ruffolo had gone to a well-known medical center out of state, with increasing frustration about his treatment there. Not so at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin. Says Ruffolo: ““Excellent customer service is such a rare find these days. Thank you for doing it right.”
Connecting the Dots
As an executive in the health care industry, Ann Mayberry-French has high expectations for her own care. She found what she was looking for, in the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Executive Health Program.
|Ann earned nursing, business and law degrees, and was working as General Counsel and Vice President of Human Resources at Merge Healthcare, a Milwaukee healthcare information technology company. She is also the daughter of a noted physician and executive at one of the most famous health care systems in the country. Finding the sweet spot of two-way communication, and coordinated care across primary care and specialty providers, was essential.|
“You’re driven to succeed. We’re driven to make sure health issues don’t jeopardize your success."
Her search yielded results from her executive physical at Froedtert & the Medical College. Ms. Mayberry-French spent the morning of her exam day in a series of diagnostic tests — a scheduling plus that this busy executive and mother of four teens appreciated. But it was a little later that day, in a consultation room with the program’s doctor, that the patient experienced her "ah-ha" moment.
Ann’s test data in hand, Robert Gleeson, MD, expertly summarized the results and addressed her medical history, drawing in detailed explanations and onsite referrals for specialized care. As a longtime corporate physician, Dr. Gleeson also painted a realistic picture of the Type A lifestyle. Most importantly, he paused many times to listen to his patient’s questions and connected diagnostic information with credible recommendations.
The two-way dialogue lasted well over an hour – three times longer than the industry average. Says Ann: "Dr. Gleeson mapped out a guide that exceeded my expectations. He connected all the dots."