Memorial Hermann Health System CEO Dr. Benjamin Chu departs after 1 year

Houston-based Memorial Hermann Health System President and CEO Benjamin K. Chu, MD, stepped down, just one year into his tenure. He is leaving to "pursue his passion in health and public policy," according to a health system statement.

Dr. Chu assumed top position at the health system in June 2016, the first physician to lead Memorial Hermann. Previously, he was executive vice president of Oakland, Calif.-based Kaiser Foundation Hospitals and Health Plan as well as group president of Kaiser Permanente Southern California and Georgia regions. He also served as president of New York City's NYC Health + Hospitals.

Dr. Chu recently served as chair of the American Hospital Association's board of trustees, and he was a member of the CDC director's advisory committee.

"As a physician and longtime public policy advocate, Dr. Chu plans to continue his mission to enhance access to high-quality care and improve the overall health of our population," said Deborah M. Cannon, Memorial Hermann Health System's board chair.

Charles D. Stokes, RN, the health system's executive vice president and COO, will take over as interim president and CEO, in addition to his current roles. Mr. Stokes has been with Memorial Hermann since 2008, prior to which, he was president of North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. He is the current board of governors' chairman for the American College of Healthcare Executives.

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