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Brian Haile to lead Neighborhood Health

Staff Reports • Updated Sep 17, 2017 at 7:30 PM

NASHVILLE – Neighborhood Health announced Brian Haile was selected as chief executive officer, effective Oct. 1. 

Haile’s extensive experience in the public health sector gives him a unique perspective to take the reins of the nonprofit network of community health centers. Distinguished CEO Mary Bufwack will retire after 29 years at Neighborhood Health and will serve as CEO emeritus through Dec. 31 to ensure a seamless transition.

“We are very pleased to welcome Brian as the new CEO to lead Neighborhood Health and start our next chapter of service to Middle Tennessee’s medically underserved communities,” said Scott Mertie, board member and chairman of the CEO search committee. “When Mary announced her retirement earlier this year, we knew it would be a challenge to find someone to fill her shoes. After a national search, we were able to find Brian in our own community. His experience at TennCare will bring an aspect to Neighborhood Health that we have not had in the past.”

Haile previously served as deputy chief operating officer at TennCare, where he worked with federal officials and advised on technical development of InsureTN, designed and led implementation of newborn and hospital presumptive eligibility programs, among other projects. He served as senior vice president for health care policy at Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, and was executive director of the Insurance Exchange Planning Initiative for the Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration.

“Nashville leans heavily on Neighborhood Health,” said Haile. “For example, Neighborhood Health is by far the largest provider of primary care for Nashville’s homeless residents. It is also the biggest provider of primary care for Nashville’s uninsured adults and for children in Davidson County. Outside of the VA and Meharry, Neighborhood Health is perhaps the largest primary care provider for veterans in the mid-state. Knowing both Mary Bufwack’s amazing reputation and the important impact this organization has on Nashville, I knew right away I wanted to join the team.

“Nashville’s needs – and its reliance on Neighborhood Health – are only going to grow. More and more people in Nashville now have insurance deductibles well over $3,000, and they can’t really afford to get routine care. Many young adults are moving here who have ambition but lack coverage – and local artists and others who are self-employed are now stretched to pay higher premiums. Still, all of them need a convenient, affordable place to get quality care. That complexity is a growing part of the future for both Nashville and for Neighborhood Health. Like everyone at the clinics, I am excited to be part of the solution.”

Haile earned his law degree at Georgetown University Law Center and was a public interest law scholar. He holds a master’s degree in public policy from University of California at Berkley and a master’s degree in health economics from the University of Cape Town in South Africa. He holds a bachelor’s degree in foreign service from Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service.

A Big Brothers Big Sisters volunteer for nearly 10 years, Haile also serves as a volunteer advocate with CASA. He is a member of the Rotary Club of Downtown Nashville and he served as a member of the Get Covered Tennessee Advisory Council. 

Neighborhood Health, formerly United Neighborhood Health Services, Inc., is a private nonprofit network of neighborhood health centers that have served Nashville for more than 40 years.  Through its 10 Nashville neighborhood clinics, the Downtown Homeless Clinic, two mobile health units and clinics in Hartsville and Lebanon, Neighborhood Health provides medical, prenatal, dental and behavioral health counseling to 30,000 medically underserved people of all ages in Middle Tennessee; 17,000 have no health insurance. Visit neighborhoodhealthtn.org or call 615-227-3000 for information about Neighborhood Health clinics and programs.

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