MINNEAPOLIS — Mayo Clinic will get a new president and chief executive at the end of the year when Dr. Gianrico Farrugia takes over from Dr. John Noseworthy, the world-renowned health care organization announced Friday.
Farrugia, the CEO of Mayo's campus in Jacksonville, Florida, since 2015, told The Associated Press that he will work closely with Noseworthy during the transition period. Noseworthy announced his plan to retire in February in keeping with Mayo's tradition of rotating its top leadership position every eight to 10 years.
Farrugia said he's fortunate to take over at a time when Mayo is in "an incredibly strong position," seeing more patients than ever before and giving them better care than ever. He said his plans for continued investments in innovation are a "natural progression" from what Mayo has accomplished under Noseworthy.
Farrugia — a native of Malta whose full name is pronounced jan-REE'-koh fa-ROO'-jah— has been a physician with Mayo for 30 years. His medical background is in genomics and gastrointestinal disorders, and he's held several leadership positions in the Mayo system.
Mayo operates hospitals and clinics in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Florida and Arizona with a staff of more than 68,000 and revenues of nearly $12 billion, treating more than 1.3 million patients annually. Its flagship Rochester campus has topped U.S. News & World Report's Best Hospitals rankings several times, including 2017-18.
Noseworthy said in the same interview that his proudest accomplishment was reorganizing the Mayo system from a holding company with separate plans and strategies for its entities into a single operating company with a single strategy and business plan. That has allowed Mayo to expand its mission and reach, he said.
"And it's allowed our staff to do what they do best, which is provide great care and advance the science and educate the workforce," he added.
Under Noseworthy's tenure, Mayo also launched Destination Medical Center. The 20-year, $5.6 billion economic development initiative is meant to expand Mayo's home base in Rochester, with public and private money aimed at attracting new patients from around the world, new businesses and skilled workers to Rochester. It has nearly $400 million in private investments, while the state has pledged about $585 million for public infrastructure. It includes Discovery Square, a 16-square block campus designed to attract startups and established companies to accelerate medical innovation.
"Good investments are coming," he said. "There's a lot planned that we haven't announced yet."