Jeffrey L. Mendelsohn, president of Virginia Health Services, is currently overseeing several facility additions and expansions.
Virginia Health Services, a locally owned operator of convalescent, rehabilitation and retirement centers, has broken ground on a 33,000-square-foot, $7 million assisted-living facility adjacent to the Mariners' Museum in Newport News. The facility will be called The Huntington at The Newport.
The group currently owns and operates The Arbors at Port Warwick, a senior living facility in Newport News, and six convalescent and rehabilitation centers throughout the Peninsula and Middle Peninsula.
VHS also recently announced it will expand its York Convalescent and Rehabilitation Center in Yorktown, and Northampton Convalescent and Rehabilitation Center in Hampton. Both expansions are expected to open in July 2013.
Virginia Health Services was founded in 1963 by a group of physicians and business professionals who recognized the growing need for convalescent care on the Peninsula. VHS has grown from a single, 50-bed center to now serving more than 650 residents. VHS also operates outpatient rehabilitation facilities, a durable medical equipment company and a wholesale pharmacy on the Peninsula, Middle Peninsula and the Northern Neck.
Mendelsohn earned his undergraduate degree at Oglethorpe University. He did his graduate studies in hospital administration at George Washington University and his residency at the University of Virginia Medical Center. He also holds an MBA from Golden Gate University in San Francisco, Calif.
Mendelsohn has spent his entire career with Virginia Health Services. He lives in Newport News with his wife, Margaret, and has two adult children and three grandchildren.
What attracted you to your position?
I did my residency in hospital administration at a large hospital system. My first job after my residency was as the assistant administrator for Virginia Health Services' original nursing facility. From the start, I loved the interaction with seniors. I thoroughly enjoyed building relationships with residents and staff in the convalescent setting.
What is changing and what are your challenges?
The regulatory and cost cutting measures being required of us are challenging. To overcome our challenges, we have made the decision to grow our company in new areas that still fall within our scope of services.
For example, we have opened a wholesale pharmacy operation to serve our residents, started expansion projects at three of our facilities and will be opening our first assisted living facility in late 2013.
What's fun for you?
Nothing is more special than time spent with my grandchildren. At the office, I especially enjoy seeing our rehabilitation residents improve to return to their residences.
If someone unfamiliar with Newport News asks what's cool or unique about it, how do you answer that?
I think the museum corridor of the Virginia Living Museum, Mariners' Museum, Peninsula Fine Arts Center, as well as the new Port Warwick, City Center and CNU development are really special.
What's something about you people would be surprised to learn?
I wake up at 4 a.m. everyday and go to the gym. It is a way of life and I have been doing it for over twenty years.Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times