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March 3, 2015

New appointments to HQC board include leaders from health regions, clinical practice, and industry

Four new members are joining the board of Saskatchewan’s Health Quality Council, bringing leadership experience from the clinical care setting, industry, and health regions.

  • Cheryl Craig is Chief Executive Officer of the Five Hills Health Region, a position she has held since April 2009. A registered nurse by training, Craig has worked in administrative roles in community care, acute care, and long-term care. With the formation of the Moose Jaw Thunder Creek Health District and subsequently the Five Hills Health Region, Cheryl served as Vice-President and Executive Director of the Clinical Services portfolio. 
  • Tom Kishchuk is President and Chief Executive Officer of Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Canada, Ltd. and has served in this role since 2006. A native of Saskatoon, Kishchuk joined Hitachi as a founding employee when Hitachi, Ltd. established its first manufacturing plant for power generation equipment to be built outside of Japan in 1988. Since then, he has held a wide range of technical and leadership roles within the company with a constant focus on safety, environment, quality and continuous improvement.
  • Dr. Werner Oberholzer is a family physician in Radville, Saskatchewan. In 2013 he received the Canada Family Physician of the Year Award and the Saskatchewan Family Physician of the Year Award. Dr. Oberholzer has been Medical Director of Sun Country Health Region’s Emergency Medical Services since 2012, and served as an expert member of the Saskatchewan Ministry of Health’s chronic disease management program from 2013 to 2015. Dr. Oberholzer completed his medical training in South Africa.
  • Beth Vachon has served as the Chief Executive Officer of the Cypress Health Region since April 2010.  Prior to her appointment, she served in a variety of leadership positions within the Cypress Health Region and the Swift Current Health District, most notably as a member of the Senior Leadership Team and the Executive Director of Community Health Services since 2003. She has been employed in health care for more than 30 years, with front-line and managerial experiences in long-term care, acute care and community health programming.

“I am pleased to see each of these accomplished individuals offer their support and expertise to the Health Quality Council by serving on the board,” said Health Minister Dustin Duncan. “We are fortunate to have leaders willing to step forward to champion quality improvement and patient safety in Saskatchewan’s health system.”

Dr. Susan Shaw, HQC’s board chair, welcomed the appointments, noting she is excited to be joined by others committed to accelerating improvement in Saskatchewan’s health care system.

“As our province continues its journey to make health care better and safer for patients and families, it’s great that we’re adding a pair of seasoned senior leaders and a front-line provider to the HQC board,” said Shaw. “We’re also sure to benefit from the experience and insights of Mr. Kishchuk, who represents an industry outside health care similarly committed to continuous improvement.”

HQC is the first agency of its kind in Canada. Formed in 2002, the organization is committed to working with partners in the province’s health system to make care better and safer for the people of Saskatchewan.