DUHS Names Accomplished Health Care Leader to Chief Operating Role

Craig Albanese comes as a leading pediatric surgeon and health care executive

Craig Albanese comes from NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, where he’s serves as group senior vice president and chief medical officer.
Craig Albanese comes from NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, where he’s serves as group senior vice president and chief medical officer.

Craig Albanese, an accomplished health care leader and distinguished academic pediatric surgeon, has been named executive vice president and chief operating officer of Duke University Health System (DUHS).

Albanese comes to DUHS from NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, where he’s currently group senior vice president and chief medical officer of the $9.2 billion, 10-hospital academic health system. He will start his new role at Duke on Jan. 17, 2022.

“Dr. Albanese is a passionate and collaborative executive with deep experience in leading cutting-edge academic health systems such as ours in becoming the best place to work, delivering highest-quality patient care, and helping to advance our other missions, including research, education and community health,’” said A. Eugene Washington, M.D., chancellor for health affairs and DUHS president and CEO.

“Given his impressive achievements and commitment to our values, I am confident that Duke University Health System will begin a new era of excellence and impact under his leadership,” Washington said.

As executive vice president, Albanese will serve as the senior leader overseeing the timely execution of DUHS goals and strategic priorities. He will work with other clinical enterprise leaders to deliver outcomes and care across Duke’s network, from the hospital to ambulatory clinics to care in homes and the community. He will also bring new insights to manage the COVID pandemic response, to support the health system’s diverse faculty and staff and to further advance the clinical enterprise strategic plan.

“I am honored to accept this position and to join the Duke family,” Albanese said. “I look forward to growing Duke’s presence in the community and building upon the existing quality improvement work that contributes to Duke’s reputation as a world-class health system.”

In his current role at NYP, Albanese is responsible for all site chief medical officers and all eight service lines, including oversight for enterprise clinical standardization, network integration and all medical affairs. In addition, he oversees quality, safety, and infection prevention and control for the enterprise.

His prior roles at New York’s largest nonprofit health system include overseeing the redesign of service line strategy at NYP to drive integration and single standards of care across 10 hospitals and two medical schools, Columbia Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons and the Weill Cornell Medical College. He also served as the COO of NewYork-Presbyterian’s Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital and the Sloane Hospital for Women, which is located within the Children’s Hospital.

“Dr. Albanese is a seasoned health care leader who possesses a collaborative management style and is deeply committed to Duke’s values,” said Duke University President Vincent E. Price.  “We welcome him to the university and the communities we serve.”

“It was quite clear in the interview process that Dr. Albanese is uniquely qualified to lead us at this pivotal moment in the life of our health system,” added William A. Hawkins, chair of the DUHS Board of Directors.

Prior to NYP, Albanese held senior leadership roles at Stanford University and the University of California San Francisco (UCSF). A respected surgeon-scientist and clinical investigator, he co-directed the team that pioneered in-utero fetal surgery.

Albanese received his medical degree from SUNY Health Science Center in Brooklyn and was a resident and chief resident in general surgery at Mount Sinai Medical Center. He completed pediatric general surgery and critical care research fellowships at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. Albanese also holds a Master’s in Business Administration from the Leavey School of Business at Santa Clara University. He has published more than 160 peer-reviewed articles, was an NIH-funded investigator, the program director for Stanford’s pediatric general surgery fellowship and is the lead author of Advanced Lean in Healthcare, a book providing practical information about how “organizations can move beyond stabilizing work processes to get to continuously improving the entire system – all within an empathetic healing environment.” 

Albanese’s appointment concludes a national search to fill the position that will be vacated by William J. Fulkerson, MD, MBA, who will step down from the role at the end of the year.

“I cannot imagine the health system would be where it is today without having had Bill guiding the way forward,” said Washington. “I am deeply grateful he has spent his career at Duke and has served as our EVP for more than a decade.”