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Roy steps down as CHUM’s executive director

MONTREAL – Dr. Denis Roy (pictured), executive director of the Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal, resigned earlier this month amid concerns over poor management of the large-scale health complex.

Dr. Roy had served as the CHUM’s executive director since 2002. Previously, he was director of professional services at the McGill University Health Centre. But of late he was the target of criticism by disgruntled staff members, according to a report in the Montreal Gazette.

The CHUM has struggled to retain doctors and nurses under Roy’s tenure. Overtime costs for nursing care has soared, while the McGill centre performed  much better, former Health Minister Philippe Couillard said in March this year.

The CHUM also ran into problems attracting $112 million in funding from the Canada Foundation for Innovation, a federal corporation. By comparison, the MUHC has succeeded in obtaining $100 million in funding from the CFI for its future research centre.

As director of professional services at the MUHC, Roy had been criticized for his handling of a fungus outbreak at the Royal Victoria Hospital. Quebec Health Minister Yves Bolduc was so concerned with the state of affairs at the Centre hospitalier de l’université de Montréal that he requested an urgent meeting, soon after being appointed the new minister.

“The retention of personnel and accessibility of care are things that worry Minister Bolduc and that’s why he requested a meeting,” said Marie-Eve Bédard, Bolduc’s press attaché.

In particular, the minister wants to know more about how the CHUM is managing its ERs, Bédard added. The CHUM is comprised of three hospitals, Notre Dame, St. Luc and Hôtel Dieu. A shortage of doctors is so acute at Hôtel Dieu that it has reportedly considered closing its ER service overnight for the summer.

“The CHUM’s performance is not at the level that we would expect of an establishment of this importance,” Bédard continued. “The minister is worried about the CHUM’s results, in comparison with other institutions (like the McGill University Health Centre.)”

The board of directors had not yet announced who will fill Roy’s position until a new executive director is selected.