Report from Matt Simeoni

Chair, Board of Directors, Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre


March 13, 2019

I consider serving on the Board of Directors of our Hospital a great privilege. Although it requires an intensive commitment of time and energy, it is rewarding to be part of the quality care that is provided at our Hospital to the people of Northwestern Ontario.

In addition to attending Board meetings, members of the Board of Directors participate on Committees of the Board: Resource Planning; Audit; Executive; Patient Safety and Quality of Care; Governance and Nominating; and Fiscal Advisory. Some of the committees also include community volunteer members who are not members of the Board.

I encourage community members to consider joining our team by volunteering to participate on committees of the Board. This level of involvement supports interested and committed people to gain experience and knowledge and prepare them for positions on the Board of Directors in the future. In addition to community members we are currently recruiting for individuals to serve as members of our Board of Directors. For further information, or to express interest, please contact Angela Kutok, Board Liaison, at or (807) 684-6183.

In addition to my volunteer colleagues on the Board of Directors and its committees, there are hundreds of volunteers who contribute time, energy and expertise to enhance patient care at our Hospital. I take this opportunity to recognize the many volunteers, including the committed members of the organizing committee, of the Bearskin Airlines Hope Classic. As a result of their efforts, over $123,000 was raised this year, and more than $3.25 million since its inception. The funds raised by this bonspiel have been used for the Breast Cancer Support Group, breast cancer services, and since 2006, to help support the Hospital’s Linda Buchan Centre for Breast Screening and Assessment.   

Last year, the Medical Staff and the Board recognized that a new Deputy Chief of Staff position was necessary to support the Chief of Staff and promote succession planning. I am pleased to announce that Dr. Kristie Skunta, MD, CCFP, has accepted the position of Deputy Chief of Staff, effective April 1, 2019. In this role, Dr. Skunta will support our Chief of Staff, Dr. S. Zaki Ahmed, to provide administrative and clinical oversight for the Hospital and to act on his behalf if absent.

Finally, I take this opportunity to reinforce Hospital President & CEO Jean Bartkowiak’s appreciation to funders of our new regional data centre. The resources provided through FedNor and the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation made this critical expansion possible. Hospitals across the region depend on the secure and reliable data centre to access and store clinical systems, patient records, and diagnostic images. Our Board is grateful to our government partners for supporting the technology required to deliver quality care to patients in Northwestern Ontario. 

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