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B.C Appoints First Female Provincial Health Officer

The first woman has been appointed as British Columbia’s provincial health officer.

Health Minister Adrian Dix announced Wednesday that deputy provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry will replace Dr. Perry Kendall as the province’s provincial health officer.

“Dr. Henry has hands-on experience in managing large-scale public-health issues both internationally and here in B.C.,” said Dix in a media release.

“She has a consistent approach with providing straightforward information to the public on the risks of Zika, or air quality, to controlling issues that affect families daily, like influenza. With Dr. Henry, we have a direct and experienced advisor to steer and improve public health in our province.”

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Prior to taking on the deputy PHO role, Dr. Henry was the interim provincial executive medical director of the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control and held a variety of public-health positions with the BCCDC from 2005 onwards.

“Dr. Henry has been an incredibly strong support for me in my role as provincial health officer and filled in for me countless times when I was unavailable,” said Dr. Kendall who will retire on January 31, 2018.

“I feel confident that Dr. Henry is the right person for this job. I have relied on her judgment and approach regularly during her time as deputy provincial health officer.”

The provincial health officer according to the Ministry of Health is the senior public health official for B.C. and is responsible for monitoring the health of the population of the province and providing independent advice to the ministers and public officials on public-health issues that concern people in British Columbia.

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