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Two high-profile appointments at Health Sciences North

The boards of Health Sciences North (HSN) and the Health Sciences North Research Institute (HSNRI) announced the appointment of a new president and CEO for both institutions and a new chief of staff for the hospital on Tuesday.

David McNeil PhD is returning to HSN as president and CEO of HSN and HSNRI, while Dr. Pankaj Bhatia is being promoted to HSN’s chief of staff.

David McNeil PhD (left) has been named HSN’s next president and CEO and Dr. Pankaj Bhatia (right) is being promoted to HSN’s chief of staff. (Supplied)McNeil worked at HSN for 28 years including more than two decades on the executive team before taking on the CEO role for Brant Community Health Care in southwestern Ontario for the past five years. He takes over from Dominic Giroux who left in June to become CEO of Hôpital Montfort in Ottawa.

“David personifies excellence and is an expert on the challenges and opportunities facing health care in northeastern Ontario,” said HSN/HSNRI board chair Stéphan Plante.

“When I think of the skills and the experience we need right now, I can think of no one better for the job.”

McNeil holds a Bachelor of Science in nursing, a Masters in health administration, and a PhD in rural and northern health. After graduating from Laurentian University in 1988, he began his career as a nurse in the James Bay community of Attawapiskat.

McNeil said in a news release that he cannot wait to get back to work at HSN.

“I am thrilled to return to HSN and HSNRI,” he said.

“It is known provincially as an institution of health care excellence and a place of tremendous opportunity for those working in the sector. I started at HSN in 1991 as a staff nurse and to be returning as the CEO is a testament to the opportunities and growth available.”

David McNeil PhD is returning to HSN as president and CEO of HSN and HSNRI. (Supplied)

Bhatia has been at HSN for 12 years and currently serves as medical director of the HSN simulation lab. He takes over as chief of staff from Dr. John Fenton.

“We are so excited to have Dr. Bhatia in this role,” said Plante.

“He has a strong interest in continuous quality improvement as it pertains to health care delivery and is sensitive to the unique cultural needs of our northern Ontario communities.”

Bhatia is an award-winning physician who graduated from the University of Western Ontario, Dr. Bhatia is also strongly committed to education and mentoring, having played a key role at NOSM University over the years as an associate professor and program director of the general surgery residency program.

Plante added that in his new role, Bhatia will work with the medical staff and administration in the delivery of quality and safe medical care for our patients.

Dr. Pankaj Bhatia is being promoted to HSN’s chief of staff. (Supplied)Both appointments were unanimous board decisions.

The hospital is set to develop a new strategic plan in the near future, so staff officials said these appointments could not have come at a better time. Top Stories


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