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  • New COO joins community health centers

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    SOMERSWORTH – Jim Avrett, an experienced health-care executive, recently joined Greater Seacoast Community Health as chief operating officer. 

    Avrett’s 30 years in health care included time at the two largest not-for-profit health-care alliances in the country, Vizient and Premier, and the North Broward Hospital District in Florida, a large public health system that had full clinical and financial responsibility for the region’s indigent population. He has also worked as a consultant on projects such as improving processes and throughput in physicians’ offices, clinics, and urgent-care centers. Most recently he was a director at the Edgewood Continuing Care Retirement Community in Andover, Mass.

    Avrett has a bachelor’s degree in Health Care Management from the University of Alabama and an MBA from the Muma College of Business at the University of South Florida. He is certified in Lean for Healthcare through the University of Texas and is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives.

    A Dover resident for the past 20 years, Avrett says the job at Greater Seacoast Community Health appealed to him because it would allow him to have a more direct impact in the local Seacoast community after many years of consulting work with organizations nationwide. “I got into health care because I wanted to help improve people’s health and well-being, and I believe I have done that,” he says. “However, I wanted to get closer to people in need and have a more direct impact on their lives. In my short time here I’ve already seen so many people do things that have made me so proud to be a part of our organization. It is clear that so many of us have that same drive to serve our patients and community.”

    Greater Seacoast CEO Janet Laatsch says that not only did Avrett’s extensive health-care experience enable him to “hit the ground running” when he joined the organization in September, but “he also fits into our culture, being very ethical and mission-driven.”

    Greater Seacoast Community Health is a network of community health centers providing primary care, pediatrics, dental care, prenatal care, behavioral health counseling, substance use disorder treatment, mobile health services, WIC, social work services, a pharmacy, parenting classes, playgroups and home visiting. The network includes Families First Health & Support Center in Portsmouth, Goodwin Community Health in Somersworth, Lilac City Pediatrics in Rochester, the Strafford County Public Health Network and SOS Recovery Community Organization. Services are open to everyone and aim to be respectful, recovery-friendly, LGBTQ-affirming and trauma-informed. For more information, visit GetCommunityHealth.org.