Michael Hamilton, the Region President, Canada and Latin America at Hillrom, a worldwide medical technology pioneer focusing on improving outcomes for patients and caregivers, has always been interested in healthcare. His mother and wife are both nurses, and he is certain that this had an impact on him. He also understood that work is an important part of anyone’s life. He therefore needed something to pique his interest and inspire him to get out of bed every day. “We all have bad days at work, but no matter how bad the day is, I know that Hillrom and I are making a difference in the lives of our patients, and that’s why I chose healthcare in the first place.”
Michael earned his bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from the University of Western Ontario. He had a summer job with a bank shortly after graduating and quickly realised that financial services were not for him. He was, however, working with someone whose spouse worked in the healthcare field, and it was via that connection that he was employed by Baxter Canada, where he remained for 25 years. “I worked my way up at Baxter until I left a little over 10 years ago and went out on my own, doing some healthcare consulting and then moved to a little start-up firm in California, where I was the first Canadian employee. After that, roughly 5 years ago, I joined Hillrom.”
“Over the years, there have been many changes, but healthcare and CCHL have remained constants for me,” Michael adds. “I’ve been pretty involved in a variety of things, whether it’s corporate advisory groups or the HPRS program. The College is a really fantastic platform for networking and building contacts with a lot of thought leaders around the country.” He also said that the CCHL has been a great way for him to stay on top of how healthcare is changing and how, as a private sector member, he can help to shape some of that transformational change and help his customers reach their objectives.
Michael is proud to be a part of the Hillrom team because of its aim to improve patient and caregiver outcomes. “When I reflect on the past 18 months, it’s been about caregivers all across the world and their incredible efforts to treat COVID-19 patients. Our role has been, and continues to be, to support patients and their caregivers, making sure that they have everything they need and are able to provide the best treatments possible.” Michael’s entire Canadian team was highly focused on getting things into the nation, from ICU beds, to vital signs monitors, to other critical equipment. As a result of their efforts, they have received a lot of positive feedback from customers across the country who continue to rely on them as trusted, reliable partners during the pandemic. “At the end of the day, that’s really what it’s all about: ensuring we’re there to deliver for Canadians and to be a firm that can be trusted to give the best care,” Michael added.
Michael first heard of the College through an HPRS event in the late 1990s, and as his career progressed, the College really became a place where he could go to listen and understand the challenges facing the healthcare sector across the country. “The College has evolved and remained a touchstone for us. Whether it’s through HPRS events or my involvement with the business advisory council, which I’ve been a part of for the past 7 years. We also became a sponsor of the CEO Forum, which we co-founded with the College to see what we could do to establish a secure environment where healthcare professionals could express their difficulties while also working together to find answers. Some of the most insightful critiques I’ve gotten from my College counterparts hasn’t always been easy to hear. You may not want to hear it at the time, but it is highly valuable information to obtain.”
“What you put in is what you get out. You must become actively involved in the programs since this is what makes them so valuable. Being an engaged member allows you to form incredible relationships and gain a greater depth of understanding. Don’t be afraid to fully commit and jump right in”. One quote that truly resonates with Michael is one by Theodore Roosevelt. “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, who at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” For Michael, it’s all about being in the arena. Winning, or learning!