Jennifer Carron was placed as the executive director of patient experience at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, the largest hospital in Missouri and the largest private employer in the St. Louis region. An affiliated teaching hospital of Washington University School of Medicine, the 1,250-bed hospital has been listed on U.S. News & World Report's honor roll of "America's Best Hospitals" for 25 consecutive years and was the first adult hospital in Missouri to be certified as a Magnet hospital for nursing excellence and the first to receive Level I trauma center verification. In her role, Jennifer is responsible for the overall creation, implementation, and maintenance of initiatives to improve patient experience and community relationships. She directs the operations of the Office of Patient Experience, which provides project leadership, program management, and consulting services to the leaders of Barnes-Jewish Hospital, and manages spiritual care, the gift shop, hospitality services, and volunteer services, as well as Barnes Lodge, a 20-room guest lodge for patients and families. In addition, Jennifer has an expanded role under the umbrella of BJC HealthCare's Center for Clinical Excellence for system-wide patient experience, and consults on patient experience plans with the faculty practice plan and the Department of Medicine of Washington University School of Medicine.
Jennifer comes to Barnes-Jewish from UnityPoint Health in Des Moines, where she served as corporate patient experience director. Through relationships with more than 280 physician clinics, 32 hospitals in metropolitan and rural communities, and home care services throughout nine regions, UnityPoint provides care to Iowa, western Illinois, and southern Wisconsin; its more than 30,000 employees log over 5.4 million patient visits each year. UnityPoint is the nation's 13th-largest nonprofit health system and fourth-largest nondenominational health system. In her role, Jennifer drove the strategy of creating a standard, unified approach to patient experience across the health system, with a scope of responsibility that covered the entire ambulatory enterprise of clinics. She directed over 5,000 staff from all departments, as well as 750 physicians and 450 advanced practitioners. Jennifer was responsible for creating a formalized office for patient experience for the system, and then leading the newly aligned function with its own reporting structure and dedicated resources. Her highly successful "From People First" initiative represented an organization-wide collaboration to determine values and culture for the system. She also defined best practices for patient experience and created the role of clinic champions to serve as point people for insight on clinics' data or workflow problems. In addition, Jennifer worked with Press Ganey to create full data transparency in the clinics – and for the public – relative to patient experience scores, leading more than half of the providers to top-decile performance.
Previously, Jennifer served as a regional quality project manager at UnityPoint Health, and had a seven-year tenure with Air Force Enlisted Village, where she rose from executive assistant to director of finance and development. She began her career in the United States Air Force, where she spent 10 years in logistics. Jennifer is originally from Iowa. She holds a bachelor's degree in resource management from Troy University in Alabama and a master's degree in operations management from the University of Arkansas, and is a Certified Patient Experience Professional through the Patient Experience Institute. Outside of work, Jennifer enjoys spending time with her husband and children, as well as reading, golfing, and playing volleyball.