Harborview Medical Center director abruptly quits

SEATTLE (AP) — The executive director of the region's top trauma hospital, Harborview Medical Center, has abruptly resigned.

The Seattle Times reports (http://is.gd/n6iQIL ) that Eileen Whalen's departure was announced in a memo to staff at the Seattle hospital Friday. Whalen is a noted trauma-services expert who had been executive director since 2008.

Harborview is the only top-level adult and pediatric trauma center in Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho.

Whalen's resignation followed several months of controversy after Harborview officials acknowledged in December that they were considering a plan to move hospital primary-care clinics into the community. Former hospital leaders opposed the plan and six members of the King County Council responded with a letter of concern.

Johnese Spisso, chief health system officer for University of Washington Medicine will assume Whalen's responsibilities until a new executive director is named. The Times reported that Whalen directed calls to her lawyer, who was not immediately available for comment.

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Information from: The Seattle Times, http://www.seattletimes.com

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