Northwest Navigator: News and Information from Navy Region Northwest in Washington State's Puget Sound, including Bremerton, Kitsap County, Oak Harbor, and Everett

Naval Hospital Oak Harbor command changes

Capt. Susan E. Lichtenstein

Capt. Susan E. Lichten-stein, will relieve Capt. James A. Thralls as commanding officer, Naval Hospital Oak Harbor, in a change of command ceremony at the Skywarrior Theatre on Friday, April 16. Rear Adm. Christine Bruzek-Kohler, Commander, Navy Medicine West will be the guest speaker.

Thralls assumed command June 2008. During his tenure, he focused on mission readiness, improved access and continuity of care while 17 percent of the medical staff deployed around the world supporting global war on terror and humanitarian efforts. Under his leadership, the naval hospital received the Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval in July 2009 for demonstrating compliance with national standards for health care quality and patient safety.

Thrall’s accomplishments were the result of his genuine desire to ensure every war fighter was ready to perform the mission at hand knowing their family would be well cared for during their absence. His next assignment is in Colorado as Director, Aurora Operations, TRICARE Regional Office West.

Lichtenstein, from York, Pa. graduated from Pennsylvania State in 1983 and was commissioned as a Medical Service Corps officer in 1985. She has also earned masters in business administration and educational administration from Old Dominion University.

Her career has taken her from Naval School of Health Services in Portsmouth, Va., to Naval Hospital Great Lakes, Ill. She qualified as a Surface Warfare Medical Department Officer while serving on the USNS Comfort (T-AH20). She is no stranger to the Pacific Northwest. In 2003 she served as the officer-in-charge of the David R. Ray Health Center (Branch Medical Clinic) in Everett. She is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives.

She is anxious to continue the evolution of making Naval Hospital Oak Harbor the premier facility of choice for quality patient care in the area of Whidbey and Fidalgo Islands. 

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