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Longtime healthcare leader named CEO of UCI Health

April 02, 2020
Longtime healthcare leader Chad Lefteris is named cheif executive officer of UCI Health
"It’s a privilege to work with all of the outstanding physicians, nurses and staff at UCI Health … [which] plays a unique role in meeting the health needs of our region’s residents,” says new CEO Chad T. Lefteris.

Chad T. Lefteris, an executive with considerable experience in integrated and academic health systems, has been named CEO of UCI Health, overseeing Orange County’s only academic medical center and all clinical and patient-serving operations.

His appointment was approved by the University of California Board of Regents.

Lefteris has served as UCI Health’s chief operating officer since December 2018. In his new role, he oversees the overall UCI Health system, which includes UCI Medical Center and more than a dozen outpatient research and specialty care centers throughout Orange County and portions of Riverside County.

UCI Health is the leading healthcare organization in Orange County and the only one to combine leading-edge, health-focused research, teaching and patient care. UCI Medical Center has been listed among “America’s Best Hospitals” by U.S. News & World Report for 19 consecutive years, and its physicians and surgeons regularly populate “Best Doctors” ratings.

It was Orange County’s first hospital to receive Magnet status for nursing excellence through the American Nurses Credentialing Center and has been redesignated three times, a feat accomplished by less than 1% of the nation’s hospitals. In addition, the medical center operates the county’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and only Level I trauma center.

Strategic leadership

“Chad Lefteris is the ideal person to advance the work of UCI Health, especially during this unprecedented time,” said Chancellor Howard Gillman. “He brings national executive experience to this vital position and is well-equipped to provide visionary and strategic leadership of Orange County’s preeminent healthcare provider and only academic medical center.”

“After a nationwide search, we identified the ideal candidate within our own ranks,” said Dr. Steven A.N. Goldstein, vice chancellor for health affairs. “Chad brings years of experience and a natural ability to build relationships. He is just the right person to lead UCI Health though this COVID-19 crisis, because he will ensure that our front-line caregivers have the tools and resources they need to provide exemplary care to our community during these trying times.”

He added: “Chad will continue to lead the expansion of our medical enterprise to bring top-quality primary and complex care to all corners of Orange County. He also has a critical role to play as a member of the health affairs leadership team that is bringing patient-centered, team-based, integrative care to the nation.”

“It is a privilege to work with all of the outstanding physicians, nurses and staff at UCI Health — they are truly heroes,” Lefteris said.

At the forefront of care and innovation

“UCI Health plays a unique role in meeting the health needs of our region’s residents — while we are at the forefront of providing complex care and leading-edge research, we also have a prominent role in providing primary and specialty care across the region. This is a pivotal time for healthcare in our state and nation with the rapid spread of COVID-19. I will prioritize the health of our community and the safety and well-being of our physicians, nurses and staff as we work together to get through this pandemic.”

Prior to joining UCI Health, Lefteris was vice president of operations at UNC REX Healthcare, a private, not-for-profit healthcare system that’s a key component of Chapel Hill, North Carolina-based UNC Health. He was responsible for the oncology service line and also led multiple operations and support services departments, ranging from patient experience and clinical engineering to facilities and construction.

“I congratulate Chad and UCI on this well-deserved appointment,” said Kim Cripe, CEO of CHOC Children’s Hospital. “Chad has been a trusted partner in advancing the CHOC/UCI relationship with significant initiatives that provide Orange County’s families with the best care available. I’ve worked with Chad since he came to UCI, and we’re so pleased that he will continue the tremendous momentum of UCI Health. I pledge my ongoing support of Chad and his leadership team as we continue to collaborate on advancing the health and well-being of our community.”

UCI Health comprises the clinical enterprise of the University of California, Irvine. Patients can access UCI Health at primary and specialty care offices across Orange County and at its main campus, UCI Medical Center in Orange, California. The 417-bed acute care hospital provides tertiary and quaternary care, ambulatory and specialty medical clinics, and behavioral health and rehabilitation services. UCI Medical Center is also home to Orange County’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center, high-risk perinatal/neonatal program and American College of Surgeons-verified Level I adult and Level II pediatric trauma center and regional burn center. It is the primary teaching hospital for the UCI School of Medicine. UCI Health serves a region of nearly 4 million people in Orange County, western Riverside County and southeast Los Angeles County. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About the University of California, Irvine:  Founded in 1965, UCI is the youngest member of the prestigious Association of American Universities. The campus has produced three Nobel laureates and is known for its academic achievement, premier research, innovation and anteater mascot. Led by Chancellor Howard Gillman, UCI has more than 30,000 students and offers 192 degree programs. It’s located in one of the world’s safest and most economically vibrant communities and is Orange County’s second-largest employer, contributing $5 billion annually to the local economy. For more on UCI, visit www.uci.edu.