Valley Health Plan

Health Care Executive Recruitment Case Study

Recruiting the Right Chief Medical Officer

Valley Health Plan is the only locally based health plan in California’s Santa Clara County. Serving their community for over 30 years, they understand their members’ needs and the providers who can best meet them. They were in the midst of major turnaround efforts, combined with an urgent need to fill the critical Chief Medical Officer position. Hearing of Duffy Group’s expertise in Health Care Recruitment, and commitment to their own community, Valley Health Plan found the recruiting partner needed to search for a top-notch candidate.

Duffy Group Strategy:

Using an executive search model called Recruitment Research, Duffy Group Practice Leaders began exploring the traits of the best candidate to partner with the executive team to execute their vision. They conducted detailed intake sessions to assess the culture, personality, projects and strategic plan, resulting in a clear profile of the ideal candidate for Chief Medical Officer for Valley Health Plan. Although the healthcare executive recruitment search was open to candidates nationally, it became apparent that the best fit would be a California resident, deeply knowledgeable of Medicaid/Medi-Cal, with both payor and provider-side experience. Duffy Group targeted proven Chief Medical Officers, Medical Directors, and Senior Medical Directors out of Medi-Cal health plans, starting locally in the San Jose area.


Duffy Group submitted their first candidate for the Chief Medical Officer within 7 days. Over the course of the search, four qualified candidates were submitted and two were chosen for client interviews. In less than two months, an excellent candidate was hired, fitting the unique and specific criteria of this essential role. As a result of the initial CMO hire, Valley Health Plan is partnering with Duffy Group to pinpoint the best candidates for its next round of future executive and managerial positions. Practice Leaders visited the facilities in Santa Clara, after the initial placement, enjoying a day of professional camaraderie and deepening the understanding of Valley Health Plan’s vision. Valley Health Plan then facilitated an introduction to Santa Clara County’s Behavioral Health Division and Duffy Group launched the search for their new top executive leadership role as well.

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