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A Message From President and COO, Jeffrey B. Hughes

It is with deeply mixed emotions that I am announcing my retirement from Wentworth-Douglass Hospital after having had the honor and joy of serving Wentworth-Douglass for more than a decade. My career in healthcare spans more than 40 years, and when I was hired as the Vice President of Planning and Network Development for Wentworth-Douglass in 2012, I never could have imagined a scenario where I would be so privileged to serve as president since October of 2020.

As I look back on my time here, I’m so proud of what we’ve accomplished! In 2013, we opened the hospital’s largest addition – the four-story Garrison Wing. Following years of planning, we developed and opened the Wentworth-Douglass Portsmouth Outpatient Center on the Pease Tradeport, including a new satellite cancer center in 2016. During this time, we also opened two urgent care centers, achieved designation as a Magnet hospital, and were the recipients of numerous awards and recognitions for our clinical excellence, innovation and patient-centered care.

Most notably, the strategic plan, vision and direction we set in 2012 led Wentworth-Douglass to join Mass General Brigham on January 1, 2017, a decision that has realized a remarkable number of clinical and programmatic advances in a short period of time, including restructuring of the organization into six key strategic clinical service lines, implementing a new electronic medical record system (Epic) and business support applications, collaborating on clinical program development, and adding specialized programs in numerous departments that serve our surrounding communities better than ever before.

When we joined Mass General Brigham, we had a clear vision of becoming a regional hub by bringing increased access and expanded clinical services of the highest quality to our region, growing and developing a high caliber physician network, and continuing to deliver world class care right here across the broader Seacoast area, where people have come to expect the very best from us for more than a century. I’m so proud of the Wentworth-Douglass team, in accomplishing all this and so much more.

While I’m looking forward to spending more time with my family and doing things I’m passionate about, I know that I will miss so much about Wentworth-Douglass, most of all its amazing people. I will miss working with a stellar senior leadership and director team, all of whom bring such caring and passion to their jobs, and such dedication to the critical mission of Wentworth-Douglass Hospital. I will miss the amazing talents of our chiefs, medical staff and providers, who deliver such advanced, cutting-edge care. And I will miss our incredible nurses, technicians, transporters, housekeepers, food and nutrition workers, social workers, rehab professionals, secretaries, security officers, facilities staff, pharmacists, and so many more, who touch so many lives in countless, meaningful ways, each and every day!

A search for a new president has already begun with a formal committee being established with members of our Board of Trustees and leaders from Mass General Brigham. In order to provide a smooth transition, I will continue in my role as president until my successor has been selected.

It has been a true honor, and a humbling experience, to have led this outstanding organization for just a short window in its illustrious history. I have every faith that the coming years will continue to be ones of growth, financial stability, innovation, and outstanding service to our patients and community.

My heartfelt thanks to each and every Wentworth-Douglass employee for your friendship, support, and dedication to making Wentworth-Douglass Hospital a very special place!

With sincere and deep appreciation,


Jeffrey B. Hughes, MPH, FACHE
President & COO

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