UTHealth Surgeon Tien Ko Named Chief of Staff at Harris Health’s LBJ Hospital

Dr. Tien C. Ko has been named chief of staff at Harris Health System’s Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital, becoming only the fifth chief of staff in the hospital’s 28-year history.

Aside from his new title, Ko also has been appointed associate dean for Harris Health Programs at McGovern Medical School at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). He will continue to serve as chief of Surgery at LBJ Hospital and holds the Jack H. Mayfield, M.D. Distinguished Professorship in Surgery.

“It’s a huge privilege to represent UTHealth at this important hospital for our community and be able to promote the medical school’s values of high-quality patient care, education and research,” Ko says. “To be the lead physician in this effort is a tremendous honor and a great responsibility.”

His top two goals are patient care and enhancing the collaboration of the medical team with Harris Health leadership and staff.

“I’ve always worked very well with Harris Health’s leadership and staff,” he says. “Harris Health has great people and I look forward to promoting synergy between UTHealth and Harris Health to achieve our common goal of high-quality care for our patients.”

Alan Vierling, executive vice president and administrator, LBJ Hospital, is happy with Ko ascending to his new role. He says Ko’s 10 years of work experience at LBJ Hospital will be invaluable as he aims to achieve his goals.

“Dr. Ko brings a refreshing air of logic, reason and practicality to everything he does,” Vierling adds. “He sees the answer to a problem quickly and understands how to make things happen in a timely fashion. His experience at LBJ Hospital helps him understand how things work and who to tap to get things done.”

Ko was jointly appointed by Dr. Giuseppe Colasurdo, president, UTHealth, Dr. Barbara Stoll, dean, McGovern Medical School at UTHealth, and Harris Health’s executive leadership. His position was formally ratified by the Harris Health Board of Trustees during its September meeting.

“Dr. Ko is a wonderful surgeon and skilled leader,” Stoll says. “He is passionate about the mission of LBJ Hospital and the patients we are privileged to serve. We are grateful for his dedication and leadership.”

Ko’s clinical and research interests are on benign and malignant diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. He has served as the President of the Association for Academic Surgery and the South Texas Chapter of the American College of Surgeons.

LBJ Hospital is a 207-licensed bed facility and the state’s busiest Level III trauma center. The facility is a regional center for neonatal intensive care and is staffed by physician faculty and residents from McGovern Medical School at UTHealth.



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