Keck Medicine of USC has appointed seasoned physician executive Amar Desai, MD, MPH, as chief executive officer of USC Care and Ambulatory Care Services, effective Aug. 1.

Desai is an experienced health-care executive with significant expertise leading health systems to improved quality, reduced costs and clinical integration.  He joins Keck Medicine of USC from DaVita Healthcare Partners Inc., where he currently serves as chief medical officer of the Paladina Health division and previously led corporate strategic development for the enterprise.

At USC, he will report to Tom Jackiewicz, senior vice president and CEO of USC Health, and will work closely with leadership across the university-based health system to achieve the system’s ambulatory and physician alignment goals.

This role is critical for our rapidly expanding health system,” said Jackiewicz. “The development of our ambulatory care network, through our existing faculty and community doctors is an essential component of our enterprise-wide clinical strategic plan. Dr. Desai will provide executive oversight of all Keck Medicine of USC ambulatory satellites, including our hospital-based clinics, Keck School department clinics, and other new outpatient joint venture partnerships and community practices.”

Desai will be responsible for driving quality and best practice standards associated with USC Care and will promote an integrated clinical environment to streamline care coordination, set quality benchmarks and improve clinical outcomes.

“This is a transformational time for Keck Medicine of USC as it evolves into a health system that can truly deliver integrated care,” said Desai. “In the post-healthcare reform world, USC’s physician practices and ambulatory care services will be a critical platform for long-term growth and success. We have world-class physicians at Keck Medicine of USC.  Our aspiration is to demonstrate a highly differentiated quality and service experience to the patients and communities we serve and bring the best of USC’s health care to Southern California and beyond. There is tremendous opportunity at USC.”

Desai has a proven track record for driving organizational results across inpatient and ambulatory settings, and for the design and implementation of innovative care delivery models.

Prior to his work with DaVita Healthcare Partners, Desai worked with McKinsey & Company, where he led engagements with hospitals, integrated health systems, governments, and medical technology companies.

He has had experience working in other leading academic health centers across the country, including the University of California San Francisco Medical Center and San Francisco General Hospital. Desai has held faculty appointments at the Stanford School of Medicine and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He holds a bachelor’s degree in public policy from Brown University, a medical degree from Brown Medical School and a master’s degree in public health from the Harvard School of Public Health. He is board certified in internal medicine and nephrology, and is broadly published in health services and outcomes research.