Air Force Vet Meersman Named Pine Ridge Hospital CEO

PINE RIDGE – The Indian Health Service says a new CEO has joined an embattled government-run hospital on South Dakota’s Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

Mark Meersman will be responsible for managing all administrative and health care activities at Pine Ridge Hospital. His appointment was announced Monday.

Meersman retired from the U.S. Air Force as a lieutenant colonel after 23 years of service. He most recently was chief of the Health Benefits Branch in the Air Force Surgeon General’s office, where he oversaw health policy and programs for 75 hospitals and clinics.

Meersman says he is looking forward to working with hospital staff to deliver “safe, high-quality health care and an excellent patient experience.”

The 45-bed Pine Ridge Hospital has been under intense scrutiny this year after federal health inspectors uncovered severe quality-of-care deficiencies.

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