Columbia University Medical Center

Benjamin K. Chu Named Senior Associate Dean

New York, NY – July 24, 2000 – Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons today announced the appointment of Benjamin K. Chu, M.D., as senior associate dean for the Columbia affiliation with Harlem Hospital Center, effective July 17.

Most recently, Dr. Chu was an associate professor of clinical medicine and associate dean for clinical affairs at New York University. Before joining NYU in 1994, he was senior vice president for medical and professional affairs at the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation, which operates Harlem Hospital. He has served as acting commissioner of health for the NYC Department of Health and acting executive director of Kings County Hospital as well as acting chief of the adult emergency service, chief of ambulatory care, and director of the medical clinic at Kings County Hospital.

Dr. Chu will be responsible for Columbia’s research and education programs at Harlem Hospital and for managing the University’s productivity-based contract with the Health and Hospitals Corporation. He will oversee 200 Columbia faculty and other health care personnel who carry out clinical, teaching, and research programs at Harlem Hospital. Dr. Chu will report directly to the Vice President for Health Sciences/Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons.

Dr. Chu succeeds Edward Healton, M.D., who is relocating to Washington, D.C., after 30 years at Harlem Hospital Center, 16 of those as associate dean and assistant vice president. Dr. Healton has made many outstanding contributions to medical education, clinical care, and the community in his years of service to Harlem and Columbia.

Columbia University President George Rupp said, “Benjamin Chu’s extensive experience and his deep commitment to the public sector prepare him well to lead Columbia University faculty at Harlem Hospital and to continue Columbia’s commitment to providing quality health care to the residents of the Harlem community.”

“We are very fortunate to have someone with Dr. Chu’s experience to lead Columbia faculty in a time of challenge when needs are great and resources are limited,” said Dr. Thomas Morris, interim dean for clinical and educational affairs at P&S, and Dr. David Hirsh, interim dean for research, in announcing the appointment. “We look forward to working with him as a senior member of P&S’s leadership.”

“Dr. Chu brings a wealth of public hospital and academic medical center experience to this position as well as very strong personal and management skills,” said Dr. Healton. “I cannot think of a better person to take over the leadership of the Columbia affiliation.”

Dr. Chu received his medical degree in 1978 from New York University and did much of his clinical training at State University of New York, Downstate Medical Center. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife, Donna, and two children.

“Harlem Hospital is a very special place,” said Dr. Chu. “It has been an anchor of quality care for the Harlem community for many years and a beacon for the training of minority health professionals. Despite tremendous turmoil in the health care environment, there are many opportunities in this partnership between Columbia and Harlem Hospital to continue to provide, and to further develop, quality programs to enhance the health of the Harlem community.”

Columbia has been affiliated with Harlem Hospital for more than 35 years. Renowned programs in urban medicine include an asthma prevention and treatment center, a pediatric injury prevention center, and a health promotion center. Harlem Hospital received a national ranking in geriatrics in the 1999 U.S. News & World Report survey.

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