The Department of Health and Social Services has named Noel Rea to serve as interim chief executive for the Alaska Psychiatric Institute.

Rea replaces acting CEO John Lee, who will return to his director post for the Senior and Disabilities Services Division, according to the department’s Tuesday news release.

Rea takes over a few weeks after API says the facility resumed good standing status with state and federal regulators.

The department said that on Dec. 27 the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services notified the state that API is “in substantial compliance” with their requirements and found no deficiencies.

“I’m pleased to be given the opportunity to provide leadership at API during this transition,” Rea said in a prepared statement. “There is a strong team in place and I will focus on ensuring the staff and governing board have the information and resources they need to succeed.”

Rea brings 30 years experience in public, private and tribal healthcare service. He worked as senior director for NetworxHealth, a health care consulting division of Virginia Mason Medical Center. He has also served as an interim CEO for other Alaska hospitals: South Peninsula Hospital, Cordova Community Medical Center and Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium.

Deputy Commissioner Albert Wall said the department will continue looking for a permanent CEO. 

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