Simply brilliant

St. Mary Medical Center names new president

By Samantha Bambino

The Times

Leading the way: Earlier this month, the Langhorne-based St. Mary Medical Center announced the appointment of Dr. Larry Brilliant as its new president. Source: St. Mary Medical Center

If Dr. Larry Brilliant’s name is any indication of his leadership abilities, the future of St. Mary Medical Center is looking bright.

Earlier this month, the Langhorne-based hospital announced the appointment of Brilliant, MD, FACEP, as its new president, a promotion that went into effect on Monday, Nov. 19. Despite joining the St. Mary team only three years ago as medical director of emergency services, his vast experience and talents helped him quickly climb the ladder. By early 2017, he was named vice president and chief medical officer. Now, he’s ready to enter the next phase of his career.

“I’m very excited about the opportunity. St. Mary has always given tremendous quality care to the community, and I’m really looking forward to continuing that legacy,” Brilliant told The Times. “This organization is all about compassion for our patients, quality healthcare and ensuring that all are treated fairly and with respect. I look forward to upholding those traditions and leading my colleagues on a journey of growth and continued success.”

A board-certified emergency medicine physician, Certified Physician Executive from the Certifying Commission in Medical Management, and State University of New York at Stony Brook Medical School graduate, Brilliant held medical management roles at Doylestown Hospital prior to working at St. Mary. Reflecting on that switch, he explained how there were several aspects that drew him to St. Mary.

“At the time I came over, I was chairman of the emergency department of emergency medicine, so having that expanded breadth of services, a bigger emergency department, as well as the trauma center, was just something that was very appealing,” he said.

In Brilliant’s previous role as chief medical officer, he was primarily responsible for the quality of medical care delivered at St. Mary. As president, he continues to oversee quality in addition to all business aspects of the hospital. According to him, having a physician in a leadership role is a unique occurrence that comes with a slew of benefits.

“Healthcare is so complex, and to have someone that actually lives it, to be able to make change, it’s something that’s very positive,” he said. “To be able to bring medical knowledge as well as my business knowledge to the role, it will help us move into the future.”

Brilliant will report directly to James L. Woodward, former St. Mary president and CEO, and current president and CEO of Trinity Mid-Atlantic Health. For Woodward, it’s an honor to have Brilliant follow in his footsteps.

“It has been a genuine pleasure to work alongside Dr. Brilliant. He embodies the true spirit of this hospital, with a focus on giving the people of Bucks County the care they need with the simple human kindness they have come to expect from St. Mary,” said Woodward. “He has already proven to be a great leader in this organization, and I know our colleagues and patients are in good hands.”

It was announced earlier this year that St. Mary, along with Saint Francis Healthcare in Wilmington, Delaware, Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital in Darby, Mercy Philadelphia Hospital and Nazareth Hospital in Philadelphia, were united to form the new health system.

Brilliant expressed his excitement over the opportunity to lead St. Mary during this time of change. Previously, it was a stand-alone regional health ministry because of its size. Now, it’s under the umbrella of the countrywide Trinity Health, which operates 93 hospitals in 22 states. According to Brilliant, having relationships with more hospitals is having a major impact on St. Mary — not only can it refer patients to locations for care it doesn’t provide, it can receive patients for care not offered elsewhere.

Moving forward, Brilliant has a few key goals he plans to accomplish as president. First, he wants to expand services at St. Mary, particularly behavioral health, substance abuse and psychiatric illnesses.

“There’s a big community need and something we’re going to have to look to provide,” he said.

Second, he will open new teaching programs in an effort to bring more physicians to the area for graduate medical education.

Brilliant’s final goal is simple.

“The biggest thing that we’re doing now is our mission. It’s why we’re here,” he said. “Our mission is safe, quality patient care.” ••

Samantha Bambino can be reached at