April 9, 2002

Nancy Lawrence
Media Relations, LHSC
519-685-8500, ext. 77642


London Health Sciences Centre accepts resignations from two specialists
Recruitment efforts already in process to replace one physician

(LONDON, Ontario) - The Department of Pediatrics at London Health Sciences Centre has received and accepted resignation letters from Drs. Richard Lee and Kim Lee.

Dr. Richard Lee, a pediatric anaesthetist, has accepted a position in the Department of Anaesthesia at the British Columbia Children's Hospital and will become a member of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia. Dr. Richard Lee has been at LHSC for 29 years during which time he has been a member of both the Department of Anaesthesia and the Department of Pediatrics. His resignation is effective June 30, 2002.

Dr. Kim Lee came to LHSC in 1998 and currently works as a cardiologist in the Department of Pediatrics. Dr. Kim Lee has accepted a position at Michigan State University entering Paediatric cardiology practice in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Dr. Kim Lee will be leaving London this summer pending immigration approvals.

"We will miss both of these talented and dedicated individuals and wish them continued success in their careers," says Tony Dagnone, President and CEO at LHSC.

Recruitment efforts are underway to replace Dr. Richard Lee, confirms Dr. Davy Cheng, Chief/Chair, Department of Anaesthesia. The successful candidate's primary focus will be paediatrics while offering some assistance with adult cases.

"The fact that efforts are already underway is a positive step for LHSC as there is a critical shortage of anaesthetists across Canada," adds Dr. Cheng. "I personally wish to acknowledge the significant clinical and academic role Dr. Richard Lee has had in this department and that he will be missed."

Dr. Tim Frewen, Chief of Pediatrics at LHSC/Children's Hospital of Western Ontario, acknowledges it is with regret that these two resignations were accepted.

"It is difficult to accept the resignations of these two friends and outstanding child health professionals. I do, however, believe strongly that the future for specialized child health care in this community can and will continue to be bright, " adds Dr. Frewen.

LHSC continues to negotiate with The Ministry of Health to reach an agreement on an Alternate Funding plan for pediatric specialists.


Regarding physician turnover rates, LHSC confirms the following:

  • From September 2000 to March 2001, nine physicians gave up their privileges at LHSC and six new hires were made.

  • From September 2001 to March 2002, nine physicians gave up their privileges and 14 new hires were made. The resignations of Drs. Richard Lee and Kim Lee are not included in the nine as both will maintain privileges until this summer.

"LHSC strongly supports a comprehensive regional paediatric program within a provincial system of care and we continue to work diligently and in good faith with the Ministry of Health, our healthcare partners, and our staff to achieve this vision," adds Mr. Dagnone.