August 03, 2020
Denver, CO – The HCA Healthcare Continental Division, which includes HealthONE in Denver and Wesley Healthcare in Wichita, KS, announced today the appointment of Ryan Thornton, MBA, MA, BSN, RN as chief nursing executive for the Continental Division effective September 1, 2020. Thornton’s new role will include oversight of the vision and strategy for nursing services across HealthONE and Wesley hospitals ensuring a focus on service excellence and patient experience through promotion of best practices. Thornton will also assist in the mentoring and development of nursing leaders to ensure meaningful engagement.
Thornton has achieved tremendous success during the past four years as chief nursing officer at Swedish Medical Center, a HealthONE hospital in Englewood, Colorado. Under his leadership, Swedish achieved CMS 4 Star ratings, multiple Leapfrog ‘A’ Safety Grades, Healthgrades America’s Best 250 Hospitals award for the Top 5% of hospitals nationally, and a 2020 IBM Watson 100 Top Hospital ranking. He also significantly improved nurse and physician engagement. Thornton also served as a mentor for several leaders in HCA Healthcare’s Chief Nursing Officer Executive Development Program.
Prior to being named Chief Nursing Officer at Swedish Medical Center in 2016, Thornton served as Swedish Medical Center’s associate chief nursing officer from 2013 – 2016. He also held nursing leadership roles including chief nursing officer at Ashley Regional Medical Center in Vernal, Utah, associate chief nursing officer at HealthONE’s Rose Medical Center, and several other leadership positions in the United States Air Force. After serving in the Air Force for more than eight years as both an enlisted member and an officer, Thornton separated from the service with several awards and honors as a captain.
“Ryan will make a superb addition to the executive team at the HCA Healthcare Continental Division,” stated Sylvia Young, president and CEO of HealthONE and HCA Healthcare’s Continental Division. “Ryan has a long-history of driving results, building trust and solid relationships with nurses and physicians alike, and a true dedication to clinical excellence. I am confident that Ryan will continue to elevate the high-quality patient care that is known amongst our hospitals and I am eager to welcome him to our leadership team!”
Thornton earned a Bachelor of Arts in kinesiology, a Bachelor of Science in nursing, and a Master of Arts in physical education all from the University of Northern Colorado and recently completed his Master of Business Administration from the University of Colorado. He is also a graduate of the HCA Healthcare Executive Development Program.
Thornton and his wife, Amanda, are Colorado natives. They have two children and their entire family has a passion for serving our community.