New Chief Medical Officer arrives

  • New face: Ayoola Oyinloye will be Bermuda’s next Chief Medical Officer (Photograph supplied)

    New face: Ayoola Oyinloye will be Bermuda’s next Chief Medical Officer (Photograph supplied)

  • Cheryl Peek-Ball, the outgoing Chief Medical Officer for Bermuda (File photograph)

    Cheryl Peek-Ball, the outgoing Chief Medical Officer for Bermuda (File photograph)

The next Chief Medical Officer was announced yesterday as the Government confirmed that Cheryl Peek-Ball will leave the post at the end of this month.

Ayoola Oyinloye arrived in Bermuda this week and will join the Ministry of Health after his quarantine requirements are completed.

Dr Oyinloye was the Deputy Director of Public Health and Consultant in Public Health for Swindon Borough Council, in England.

A health ministry spokeswoman said: “He is an experienced epidemiologist, and was steeped in managing the pandemic in his community in the United Kingdom.

“Dr Oyinloye trained as a doctor at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria, and had his postgraduate training in the universities of Ibadan and Liverpool.

“He is a Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health UK.”

The CMO’s work includes health professional registration and regulation, epidemiology and surveillance as well as drugs control.

The remit also covers statutory responsibilities such as consultation with government departments and, in recent months, leading Bermuda’s public health response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Dr Peek-Ball has been Bermuda’s CMO since June 2013 and will retire on August 31.

Her career included work as a senior medical officer in the health ministry from 2009 to 2013 and as a medical officer for maternal health and family planning in the Department of Health from 1990 to 2009.

Kim Wilson, the health minister, said: “Words cannot express my gratitude to Dr Peek-Ball for all that she has done for the health of our island throughout a career spanning almost 30 years with the Ministry of Health.

“Dr Peek-Ball has become a trusted resource over the years, a go-to encyclopaedia of medical knowledge and a reliable friend.

“Her calm demeanour and positive attitude have never been more apparent, and certainly appreciated, than during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Her name will always be synonymous in my mind with Bermuda’s success against Covid-19. Her knowledge and insight have been the guiding light throughout this crisis to an extent that I know will never be fully realised by most.

“She will be missed greatly and I wish her all the best in her retirement.”

Dr Peek-Ball added: “A year ago I confirmed my intention to retire from public service in 2020, and the time has arrived swiftly, with a backdrop I could not have imagined.

“In looking ahead, despite the pandemic and longstanding social injustices, I remain optimistic and excited about the future of Bermuda’s health system and the wider community.

“In these current challenges, we are being reminded that we cannot prosper or even survive without solidarity and co-operation.

“Thus far, the community has shown much creativity, cohesiveness and fortitude; and as we know, there is enormous talent, goodwill and dedication in the health community.

“Bermuda is fortunate and we will get through this.”

Ms Wilson said: “We are so very pleased to have joining us, and welcome to Bermuda, Dr Oyinloye.

“The entire staff at the ministry headquarters are very much looking forward to working under his expert guidance.

“He has been well briefed about our public health situation and the health system challenges on island.”

She added: “The Ministry of Health endeavours to ensure the hiring of Bermudians wherever possible and actively works to support the development planning process for potential successors to ensure future appointments of Bermudians for leadership positions.

“This government committed to investing in Bermuda’s future and we have kept our promise by increasing medical and health scholarships by 81 per cent since 2017.

“This has seen Bermuda move from awarding $223,000 to 11 deserving Bermudians in 2017 to this government awarding $403,000 to 21 health students in 2019.”

Ms Wilson said: “The Ministry of Health encourages Bermudians to seek careers in public health and reminds any Bermudian interested in a career in health that they can also apply for the Dr Barbara Ball Scholarship which is awarded annually for study in a range of health professions that support public health, with priority given to nursing, allied health and social work.

“We have a shortage of health professionals in Bermuda, particularly in specific areas that benefit public health, and we encourage our young people to consider professions in the health sector as they are enormously fulfilling and there are a great many job opportunities.”

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Published Aug 15, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Aug 15, 2020 at 8:00 am)

New Chief Medical Officer arrives

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