FREDERICTON (GNB) – Health Minister Dorothy Shephard has appointed Moncton lawyer Mathieu Picard to chair the board of directors of the Vitalité Health Network.

“Mr. Picard has spent his career advocating for the health of New Brunswickers,” Shephard said. “He is a strong leader, and I am confident his breadth of experience will help to inform and guide the board of the regional health authority during these very challenging times.”

Picard holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration as well as a law degree from the Université de Moncton. He has been practising law in both official languages since 2011. For the past year, Picard had also been a member of the New Brunswick Health Council whose mandate is to engage New Brunswickers and to hold the health-care system accountable to its responsibilities in the delivery of services.

“My role as chair of the board is to be a strong voice to ensure quality care to patients, to ensure Vitalité is a good place to work for every employee and to engage all of our stakeholders,” Picard said. “Together we have to address the significant human resource challenges. Human resource issues are a problem in all sectors of the province right now, but the strained resources in health care affects the most vulnerable and is therefore felt most acutely.”

Picard says he wants all sectors within Vitalite to feel that the board is reachable and ready to listen to and understand concerns.

The appointment is effective immediately.