When Sudha Rathie started work at Piedmont Health, the organization was called Orange-Chatham Comprehensive Health Services.
“It was a very small health organization,” Rathie said. “I have seen a tremendous amount of growth.”
Rathie, who serves as Piedmont’s director of laboratory services and a cost analyst, celebrates her 30th anniversary with Piedmont Health this spring. She has seen the community health organization grow from serving about 20,000 patient visits annually during the 1980s to now serving more than 100,000 patient visits annually in recent years.
Previously, Rathie was a medical technologist for a hospital in New Jersey. She and her husband moved to Durham, N.C. and she began looking for a job shortly after the move. Rathie was glad when she found an available position at Orange-Chatham Comprehensive Health Services.
“Community health centers were very rare at that time,” she said. “It just meant to be.”
She began as a lab technologist at the organization in 1985. About a year later, she became the organization’s director of laboratory services and later added cost analyst to her duties.
Rathie’s job includes working with physicians, laboratory professionals, and other community health center staff to help the Piedmont Health centers’ laboratories run efficiently while still providing high-quality care to patients.
The cost analysis part of her job involves tracking the cost of laboratory supplies and services and providing financial reports to Piedmont Health community health centers’ staff to help Piedmont Health successfully manage its supplies and resources.
Rathie has also shared her expertise with medical professionals across the state and on a national level.
Within the first five years of her work with Piedmont Health, she compiled a workbook. The workbook guide was for the National Association of Community Health Centers and is titled “Laboratory Management: A Guide to Clinical Laboratory Management and Accreditation Including a Survey of The Clinical Laboratory Improvement Act of 1988.”
The guide is designed to help laboratory professional and other medical professionals effectively meet federal laboratory standards. Thousands of copies of the workbook have been issued, including a copy that is in the National Library of Medicine in Bethesda, Maryland.
At age 57, Rathie also has another special upcoming milestone. She and her husband will celebrate their 35th wedding anniversary this July. The couple now lives in Cary and they have two adult sons.
When Rathie is not at Piedmont Health, she enjoys reading books about leadership and self-improvement. She also volunteers regularly as a practice administrator at local charitable clinics.
Rathie said the unique opportunity to connect with patients was a major reason why she started working at a community health center 30 years ago.
“This is where you can really make a difference in the life of patients,” she said.