Island Health leaders recognized for outstanding contributions

VANCOUVER ISLAND – Island Health leaders, Dr. Richard Stanwick, Chief Medical Health Officer, and Dr. Wilma Arruda, Medical Director of Pediatric Services, are being honoured for their outstanding contributions to children’s health and wellness in B.C.

The American Academy of Pediatrics acknowledges Drs. Stanwick and Arruda for exceptional work in their fields. The B.C. Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics nominated Stanwick and Arruda for this honour.

Dr. Richard Stanwick is acknowledged for outstanding contributions to healthy public policy and injury prevention. As Chief Medical Health Officer since 2001, Dr. Stanwick is responsible for monitoring and assessing and protecting the health of the public. For more than three decades, he has contributed to healthy pediatric policy in both Canada and the United States on issues such as crib safety, preventing injuries on all-terrain vehicles and eliminating flammable children’s sleepwear. He has been a key figure in promoting infant, child car seats including booster seats across Canada. He has served as the Chair of the Injury Prevention Committee of the Canadian Paediatric Society for three terms and in 2014 was the President of the Society.

“Childhood is an critical time that establishes life-long health,” says Dr. Stanwick. “I am humbled to receive this honour for my efforts to encourage health and wellness for Canadian children.”

Dr. Wilma Arruda is honoured for her foundational work in starting Nanaimo’s John Barsby Wellness Centre in 2015. Dr. Arruda initiated the wellness centre, which provides health and wellness services to students on their school grounds. She champions youth-focused health care and brought together a wide range of community partners to support the centre. 

“My vision is to empower youth in their own health and encourage health and resilience,” says Dr. Arruda. “I am honoured to be recognized for starting the Barsby Wellness Centre, which not only improves youth health, but also builds trusting relationships between caregivers and youth.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 66,000 pediatricians committed to the optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents, and young adults. The Special Achievement Awards recognize outstanding AAP work of individuals or chapter achievements accomplished in the previous years.

Island Health provides health care and support services to more than 767,000 people on Vancouver Island, the islands in the Salish Sea and the Johnstone Strait, and mainland communities north of Powell River.
Central/North Island media inquiries:
Cheryl Bloxham

South Island media inquiries:
Meribeth Burton