The physicians at Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla have elected obstetrics and gynecology specialist Dale Mitchell, M.D., as the new chief of staff of the 432-bed campus. Dr. Mitchell took over as head of the 1,092-member physician team on Jan. 1.
During his two-year term, Dr. Mitchell will serve as medical staff liaison to Scripps La Jolla’s administrative staff and Scripps Health’s board of trustees. He will play a key role in driving continuous quality improvement in the delivery of health care services to the 126,000 patients cared for each year at the hospital.
He succeeds outgoing Chief of Staff Mark Sherman, M.D.
“Dr. Mitchell has a long history of service and leadership at Scripps La Jolla,” said Carl Etter, Scripps Health senior vice president and regional chief executive. “He will provide a strong, authoritative voice for his fellow physicians as they continue to build on the world-class patient care that has long been a hallmark of the hospital. We are fortunate to have such an experienced leader and skilled physician at the helm of the Scripps La Jolla medical staff.”
Dr. Mitchell is the first chief of staff at Scripps La Jolla to practice with the Scripps Clinic Medical Group. Previous chiefs of staff have worked for private medical practices affiliated with the hospital.
“One of my goals is to continue the integration between private practice physicians and Scripps Clinic physicians here at Scripps La Jolla,” Dr. Mitchell said. “We have much to learn from each other in terms of best practices for delivering the highest quality care to all of our patients.”
Dr. Mitchell is also the first OB-GYN to lead the hospital staff. He noted that OB-GYNs provide a wide range of in-patient and out-patient care, and that the care of their patients has become more complex over the years and often involves collaboration with other types of physician specialists.
“I would like to increase our overall focus on the medical care of women throughout their lives,” Dr. Mitchell said.
Dr. Mitchell has been a member of the Scripps La Jolla medical staff since 1991, and has held numerous leadership positions both at the hospital and with Scripps Clinic, including chairman of OB-GYN.
He received his undergraduate degree from Boston College and his medical degree from Georgetown University. He moved to San Diego to complete his residency training at Naval Medical Center San Diego. He is certified by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
Dr. Mitchell’s medical interests outside of his clinical practice include new technologies related to stem cell therapy and web-based telemedicine.
Born in Kittery, Maine, Dr. Mitchell now lives in the Kensington neighborhood of San Diego with his wife and two daughters.
Outside work, Dr. Mitchell enjoys downhill skiing, mountain bike riding, playing guitar and home brewing beer.