Pain doctor appointed as chief medical officer

| 25/07/2019 | 16 Comments
Cayman News Service

(CNS): Dr John Lee, who was a pain specialist at the Health Services Authority, has been appointed as the Cayman Islands’ top medical professional by the health ministry. According to a press release, he has been appointed as the chief medical officer and will be based at the ministry to oversee and monitor the health of the Cayman Islands population, quality of healthcare services and professionals.

There is no indication in the release however about the recruitment process or how the new top doctor was appointed.

Chief Officer Jennifer Ahearn said the CMO plays an important statutory role in several laws and regulations that impact security and immigration as well as health. The job is a focal point for Cayman’s participation in international health conventions and a liaison to the Caribbean Public Health Agency, the Pan American Health Organisation, Public Health England and similar regional and international bodies.

“As chief medical officer, Dr Lee will be developing the country’s approach to monitoring the standards of our healthcare systems,” Ahearn said in the release. “He will also be one of our foremost advocates as we work to engage Caymanians and residents in national public health matters like the reduction of preventable illnesses.”

Health Minister Dwayne Seymour said he will help to drive forward government’s healthcare agenda.

“Dr Lee is a truly world class medical professional,” the minister stated. “He is exceptionally qualified to take on a leadership role at this level and to help the ministry team deliver government’s promise of improving access to quality, affordable healthcare.”

Dr Lee said he was excited to be starting his new role. “It offers a wonderful opportunity to develop healthcare systems on the islands that will positively impact the lives of people here in both the short and long term,” he added.

Before joining the HSA, Dr Lee spent ten years as a consultant in pain medicine at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, University College London Hospital, in the United Kingdom. He is affiliated with a number of professional organisations in the UK, including Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians, Fellowship of the Royal College of Anaesthetists, and Fellowship of the Faculty of Pain Medicine (Royal College of Anaesthetists).

A published author with over 100 publications, reports, presentations and audits to his name, Dr Lee has been involved in medical management and implementation of quality standards throughout his career. He has been closely involved in the development and implementation of professional medical guidelines, for example, through the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence in the UK. 

He has a medical degree from University College London. He also has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the sciences.

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Comments (16)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    On the plus side, he’ll be able to treat himself, as this job will undoubtedly be painful.

  2. Anonymous says:

    We need a more International Staffed Hospital. Too many of of one Nation and not only in the Hospital but in the different various Offices.

    • Anonymous says:

      What do you expect? Some countries/cultures push their children into medical careers more than others. Studying to be a doctor is a SIGNIFICANT investment of time and money – I can see why relatively fewer people choose to go into it. However, as an educator in the public schools here, I don’t see any real push for our children to pursue medicine as a career choice. I would like to see more of my own Caymanian people as doctors.

      – Driftwood

      • Anonymous says:

        I agree with you but normally the Rhetoric is ” too many Caymanian parents ARE expecting their children to become doctors, lawyers and the like instead of getting them into trades” Personally I think both areas are equally important. .I trust that you are doing your best to get the kids interested. If you are helping our students to the best of your ability that makes you someone to be appreciated and definitely not a driftwood. “Each one should teach one”

  3. Anonymous says:

    This is just another square peg being jammed into a round hole and Caymanians will pay the price. There is no where in the this article that indicated this Pain doctor has any training or experience in Health Policy development and implementation.
    In most countries the CMO is usually expected to have the professional qualification in Public Health administration.
    So we will do the usual recruit some unqualified foreigner, train him for the job, send him on Public Health Seminars where his lack of knowledge will embarrass this country and then give him Cayman Status.

  4. Anonymous says:

    His job is with the Ministry. He will liaise with the hospital. Not head the hospital

  5. Anonymous says:

    Great appointment. I was treated by Dr. Lee and not only did he treat my symptoms successfully, he identified the cause (which 5 other Doctors had been unable to do) and I now live ‘pain free’!

    • Anonymous says:

      Did other 5 lose their license or refunded money? Or it is okay to continue to practice medicine? The only profession where they get paid for incompetence. You won’t pay an auto mechanic if he won’t find what is wrong with your car.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Pain doctors mask pain with pills and injections. To address the cause of pain they would send you to another doctor.

    • Slacker says:

      It’s considerably more complicated than your comment suggests.

      • Anonymous says:

        Pain is an indicator. How complex could it be to see a human body as a whole, not as parts of the whole. Anyone can give you a pill or make an injection. It takes a real doctor to find the cause of a pain and address it.

    • Anonymous says:

      Agreed. This was his approach to me also. I found him condescending and disinterested.

      • Anonymous says:

        EXactly how would Dwayne Seymour know that the Dr is a world class medical professional? Who told him so?

    • Anonymous says:

      I do not understand this. Dr. Jefferson, a Caymanian, has held this position for a number of years. What has happened to him? Has he been removed? Where has he gone? And why? Was this position advertised? Was the new position that Dr Jefferson has moved to been advertised? What qualifications does Dr Lee have to fill this position?

      CNS: Dr Jefferson is the medical director, a different job. As far as I know he is still in that position.

      • Anon says:

        Sorry Medical Director is not Caymanian

        CNS: The medical director is a first generation Caymanian. That makes him a Caymanian. I don’t know how long he’s been here but it must be in the region of 25 years.

        • Anonymous says:

          CNS please note: the medical director is a Jamaican by birth and moved to Cayman around 20 years ago.

          CNS: As I said, he’s a first generation Caymanian. That means he was born somewhere else but is a Caymanian now – a full Caymanian, not a partial one. He is also a wonderful doctor and a huge asset to the Cayman Islands.

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