Atul Gawande’s announcement last week that he was stepping down as CEO of a high-profile health venture created by the leaders of Amazon, JPMorgan Chase, and Berkshire Hathaway, came after a frustrating two years marked by high turnover in key positions, potential duplication with the work of one of its founding companies, and halting progress toward its goals, a STAT examination has found.

Gawande, a celebrated surgeon, health policy thinker, and writer, recruited top talent to the health care startup, known as Haven. But several people with knowledge of its operations said the company struggled to retain many of the new hires, including data scientists and software engineers. Several employees left to join the three companies that founded Haven in the first place. In February alone, 8% of Haven workers with public profiles on LinkedIn reported leaving the company.

Unlock this article by subscribing to STAT Plus and enjoy your first 30 days free!

GET STARTED

What is it?

STAT Plus is STAT's premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond.

What's included?

  • Daily reporting and analysis
  • The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters
  • Subscriber-only newsletters
  • Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day
  • STAT+ Conversations
  • Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations
  • Exclusive industry events
  • Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country
  • The best reporters in the industry
  • The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry
  • And much more
  • Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr.
  • “STAT’s reporting was based on interviews with one former employee and several acquaintances of Gawande’s …” Enuf said. At some point, we’ll get the actual story of what’s going on.

  • If these companies were serious they would’ve hired a former hospital CEO or executive who had run a big system. The vast majority of money spent by the companies’ health benefits programs is still spent on hospital care–much of which is often priced vastly differently and of uneven quality. Somebody from the hospital industry with operations experience could’ve defined a clear path forward for them; understood how technology could change paradigms; and, how employee benefit programs can influence employee behaviors. A high profile thinker and surgeon was the wrong choice all along.

Comments are closed.

A roundup of STAT’s top stories of the day in science and medicine

Privacy Policy