Community Memorial Health System Welcomes New Chief of Staff

dr Chris Johnson was welcomed this week as the new chief of staff for the Community Memorial Health Systema not-for-profit health system comprised of Ventura-based Community Memorial Hospital and Ojai Valley Community Hospital.

Johnson has been a longtime leader at the Ventura hospital and served as medical director of the emergency department since 2009. He replaces Chief of Staff Dr. Deborah Carlson, who served from Jan. 1, 2021, to Dec. 31 last year.

“Dr. Carlson was our chief of staff during an extremely challenging time in healthcare,” Johnson said in a statement. “She was able to make a significant positive impact on patient care and physician well-being, and our entire community will benefit from her contributions to Community Memorial.”

Community Memorial said in a statement that one of Johnson’s first priorities is to help ensure that the relationship between the medical staff and health system administration remains strong as the health system welcomes a new chief executive, Mick Zdeblick. The role will be effective Jan. 9 and involves the retirement of Chief Executive Gary K Wildewho is retiring after 18 years of service.

Johnson also wants to help implement a new electronic medical record system across Community Memorial’s network of hospitals and health centers in the next few years. The process has begun and once put into operation, physicians and patients will have greater access to health records.

Johnson’s earned his medical degree from the University of Nevada School of Medicine, where he also served his internship. He also completed his residency at U.S.C Medical Center in Los Angeles, one of the busiest trauma centers in the world.

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