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I’m writing today to let you know that I have been offered – and have accepted – the role of Deputy Minister of Health for the Province of Ontario. This appointment will start in about two months, which will give me time to see as many of you as possible so that I can thank you for the support, encouragement and friendship that has come my way over the past nine years that I’ve been at UHN at President & CEO. Of course, with many of you, the relationship goes back much further to my time at Princess Margaret and my first career – that of an orthopedic cancer surgeon.
Leaving UHN – my professional home and the object of so much of my personal energy and passion – is difficult but I do so in the knowledge that we have many, many strong leaders within the organization who are dedicated to ensuring that UHN continues to be a leader in health care in Canada and around the world.
I believe this province and country is blessed with a health care system that is universal, affordable and important to every Canadian citizen. To be asked to lead the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care of Canada’s largest province is something I couldn’t turn down because I want to do whatever I can to ensure that the health care we have today is even better quality and more affordable for our children and our grandchildren. I anticipate that there will be days when I wish that I had never left UHN- but I have learned so much working here that will be useful in my new job.
I hope that you will all support me in this new role and that you will also continue to provide Ontario and Canada with leadership, commitment and the kind of expertise that is needed by all patients. UHN is a beacon in this country and it will continue to shine.
I have spoken with John Mulvihill, the Chair of the Board of Trustees of UHN about this change. All of the members of the Board have been supportive throughout my tenure and I will continue to count on their support and advice as I leave for the Ministry. John and the Board will begin an immediate search for the next President & CEO of UHN and details of that search as well as an interim leadership plan will be sent soon.
I’ll close by saying that I couldn’t have done this job without the good will, enthusiasm, and talent of the people of UHN. You are what I will miss most in the months and years ahead and I deeply and sincerely thank you for the support and friendship you have given me over the past nine years.