Middlesex-London Health Unit announces Dr Summers as new Medical Officer of Health

Following a unanimous vote, the Middlesex-London Board of Health has recommended that Dr Alex Summers become the new Medical Officer of Health for the Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU).

The 34-year-old started with the health unit in 2018 as associate medical officer of health and has served as the region’s acting medical officer of health since Dr Mackie went on leave last fall.

Dr. Summers will oversee a gradual transition of personnel from pandemic emergency response to more traditional public health roles.

“I’m engaged with the leadership team and the board for (employees) to find the space to decompress and acknowledge their experiences so that we can rediscover the joy of public health work,” he explains. he.

Dr. Summers inherits a health unit under scrutiny after CUPE Local 101, which represents about 300 current employees, raised concerns about a negative work environment.

“No comment,” MLHU CEO Emily Williams replied when asked by CTV News if there were any ongoing investigations or other processes dating back to Dr. Mackie’s time as medical officer of health. “What our staff and union leaders need to hear from us is that we are committed to working to develop a positive work environment in the health unit.

Board of Health Chair Matthew Reid makes this commitment to staff: “Employee health and well-being will be a priority going forward, and it is very important that all of our staff feel supported. »

“We are going to commit to being kind every day,” adds Dr. Summers. “It will be the cornerstone of how we work as an organization.”

Summers is a graduate of Queen’s University School of Medicine, completed her residency in public health and preventive medicine at the University of Toronto, and holds a master’s degree in public health from the TH Chan School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. ‘Harvard University. He is also an adjunct faculty member at Western University’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry in the Masters of Public Health program.

Dr Chris Mackie officially resigned as Medical Officer of Health on Monday. It was announced in November that he was taking leave.

Mackie has previously come under fire for leaving large amounts of equipment at 50 King St. after saying the MLHU had successfully moved to CitiPlaza.

An investigation revealed that personal information and personal health information remained on two hard drives left behind.

Paper documents left at 50 King Street included information on 270 people involved in a food poisoning investigation.

Last year, he defended accepting more than $100,000 in pandemic overtime in 2020.

The hiring of Dr. Alex Summers as Medical Officer of Health is still awaiting final provincial approval.