Nationally known orthopaedist selected as chief medical officer for UF Health Shands

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — University of Florida orthopaedic oncologist C. Parker Gibbs Jr., M.D., has been named chief medical officer for UF Health Shands, effective Oct. 31.

In his new role, Gibbs will oversee medical staff practicing within UF Health Shands and will continue to provide a framework for a culture of safety and measurement of the quality of care by physicians and other clinicians. He also will represent UF Health Shands in physician recruitment, credentialing, discipline and continuing medical education, and will continue as an active, practicing member of the medical staff.

“Dr. Gibbs is the embodiment of a ‘triple threat’ academic physician, and thus has the respect and support of the entire faculty,” said David S. Guzick, M.D., Ph.D., senior vice president for health affairs at UF and president of UF Health. “He has developed a national reputation for excellence in clinical orthopedic oncology, has current NIH funding for his basic research on osteosarcoma and is an outstanding educator of future orthopedists. Building on this multifaceted career, and the excellent work he has done in the quality and safety arena for cancer patients at UF Health, Dr. Gibbs will no doubt be an outstanding chief medical officer at UF Health Shands Hospital.”

Gibbs, the Eugene L. Jewett Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, was appointed deputy director of medical affairs for the UF Health Cancer Center in 2014. He is chief of the UF College of Medicine division of musculoskeletal oncology. His research team studies the mechanisms that determine the malignant potential and loss thereof in osteosarcoma cells.

“As a respected orthopaedic surgeon with a reputation for patient-centered care, Dr. Gibbs is the natural choice for this position,” said Ed Jimenez, CEO of UF Health Shands. “His experience as a cancer surgeon, a clinical researcher and an administrator gives him a unique and extremely valuable perspective necessary to the effective execution of this position. I am eager to work with Dr. Gibbs.”

Gibbs is one of fewer than 200 surgeons nationwide who are considered to be experts at limb-salvage surgery to treat bone and soft tissue sarcomas. Gibbs is a National Institutes of Health/National Cancer Institute-funded investigator who has published nearly 70 scientific papers. He also directs the NIH-funded Musculoskeletal Oncology and Stem Cell Laboratory at UF.

“This is a key leadership position in our health system and Dr. Parker Gibbs is the ideal individual to serve as our next chief medical officer,” said Michael L. Good, M.D., dean of the UF College of Medicine. “He has distinguished himself as a physician leader and surgeon, and his clinical background and expertise speak for themselves.”

Gibbs earned his medical degree from UF in 1989 and completed his residency in orthopaedic surgery at the University of Colorado and fellowships in orthopaedic oncology and orthopaedic oncology research at the University of Chicago. He served as the director of musculoskeletal oncology at the University of Colorado for five years before his appointment to the UF department of orthopaedics in 2003.

“Dr. Gibbs understands the needs and concerns of our patients, our hospital leaders and our clinical staff, and is committed to our missions,” said Irene Alexaitis, D.N.P., R.N., N.E.A.-B.C., vice president for nursing and patient services and chief nursing officer for UF Health Shands.

Gibbs will succeed Timothy C. Flynn, M.D., who was named chief medical officer in 2010. As CMO, Dr. Flynn has been responsible for the direction and oversight of the medical staff practicing at UF Health Shands hospitals and outpatient programs. He closely collaborated with Alexaitis and served as a champion for expert nursing and patient care staff.

“It is obvious to me that UF Health Shands Hospital is already an outstanding institution,” Gibbs said. “Following the pioneering efforts of Dr. Tim Flynn, in my new role as CMO I hope to build on our existing strengths, leveraging the enthusiasm and skill of our physicians, staff and patients to take us to the next level in safety, quality of care and creating the perfect patient experience.”