Corp Comm Connects

York Region yet to name new medical officer of health
Oct. 4, 2021

Dr. Richard Gould taking on acting medical officer of health role after Dr. Karim Kurji's retirement
York Region is not yet naming a successor for retiring medical officer of health Dr. Karim Kurji.

The longtime medical officer left the role Sept. 30. Corporate communications advisor Melissa Pinto said the associate medical officer of health, Dr. Richard Gould, would be acting in Kurji’s capacity in the meantime.

Kurji officially departed the role after announcing his retirement in June after helping to steer the region through three waves of the pandemic. York Region council gave him a send-off at its Sept. 23 meeting, but Kurji assured residents in his last video message that there would be a smooth transition.

Kurji faced pushback from some of his decisions as a medical officer, but York Region council consistently stood by him. He continued issuing orders in his final days in the role, including letters of instruction to end a provincial vaccination verification exemption for youth in organized sports, as well as increasing restrictions in child care settings.

Gould has worked with York Region Public Health for eight years. He has also delivered several of York Region’s COVID-19 updates in recent months, including Sept. 27.

York Region had the appointment of a new medical officer of health on its Sept. 23 council agenda, but the discussion was held during a private session.