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WNSWLHD appoints first Chief Medical Officer

12 September 2022

Western NSW Local Health District (WNSWLHD) is delighted to announce the appointment of its first Chief Medical Officer (CMO), with Professor Mark Arnold set to begin in the new role in January 2023.

Mark Spittal, WNSWLHD Chief Executive, said Professor Arnold’s appointment is an exciting milestone in the ongoing development of the LHD’s clinical workforce and the care it provides.

“We want our LHD to be a dynamic and supportive workplace, one that doctors and other clinical staff choose as the place to grow and develop life-long careers,” Mr Spittal said.

“Professor Arnold’s appointment as our first CMO is another step towards turning that vision into an everyday reality. He will be an integral part of the District’s executive team alongside senior leaders with professional oversight for nursing and allied health.

“The CMO role is specifically designed to put real emphasis on the standards of clinical practice, the ethics of care and the long-term development of the medical workforce in particular. In doing that the CMO will engage closely with clinical staff at all levels.

“Open, honest communication and collaboration between clinicians delivering frontline care and senior leaders responsible for steering the LHD is vital. It’s an essential part of providing world-class care and continually developing and improving the way we deliver that care.”

Professor Arnold has more than 30 years’ experience as a Rheumatologist and, as a senior Academic with the University of Sydney, he has been the Head of the Rural Clinical School and Professor of Rural Medicine.

Professor Arnold said as the District’s new CMO he is committed to fostering a District-wide culture of collaboration, cooperation and respect.

“Having practiced in community-based care and hospital-based health services, it’s apparent that we need coordination and cooperation between our clinicians across a broad range of nursing, allied health and medical disciplines across a vast area,” Professor Arnold said.

“The needs of our clinicians and communities have been stated and clearly understood. Recognising that this is a complex task, I’m delighted to be a part of a process which will aim to develop a workforce and culture across the District for the benefit of all of our communities’ health.”

Biography – Professor Mark Arnold

Professor Mark Arnold has more than 30 years’ experience in clinical practice as a Rheumatologist and has worked in a variety of settings including metropolitan, regional and rural practices.

Throughout his academic career, Professor Arnold has also played a crucial role in establishing pathways for medical students to establish their careers outside of metropolitan areas.

As the Head of Rural Clinical School and Professor of Rural Medicine with the University of Sydney, Professor Arnold was heavily involved in the establishment of the Murray Darling Medical Schools Network Graduate Medical Program at Dubbo.

He was also heavily involved in the ongoing Extended Rural Placements at the School of Rural Health at Dubbo and Orange which, for over 20 years, has delivered ongoing education and training opportunities outside of major metropolitan centres for University of Sydney medical students.

Professor Arnold is a current member of the Executive of the Medical Council of NSW and sits, or has sat, on a number of other important committees, councils and boards throughout his career.

Professor Arnold is also a long-standing member of the Australian Rheumatology Association (ARA) NSW Branch Council, prior Chair of the Regional Rheumatology Committee and is the current NSW President as well as member of the ARA Board. He is also a member of the Royal Australian College of Physicians’ Adult Medicine Division Clinical Examination Committee.

Professor Arnold has also undertaken key leadership roles in Human Research Ethics at the University of Sydney, and Clinical Ethics with the Royal Australian College of Physicians’ Clinical Ethics Committee and the Australian Health Ethics Committee of the National Health and Medical Research Council.