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County Offers Doctor Top Health Post

November 14, 1986|DAVID SMOLLAR | Times Staff Writer

Dr. J. William Cox, former surgeon general of the United States Navy and currently associate director of the San Diego State University Graduate School of Public Health, has been offered the job as director of the San Diego County Department of Health Services, it was learned Thursday.

Cox, a 58-year-old cardiologist, said Thursday he is interested in taking the job, but details have to be worked out between the university and the county. Cox said the dean of the university's College of Human Services has recommended that he be granted a leave of absence if his selection becomes final.

Cox headed the Balboa Naval Hospital in the late 1950s and then headed the medical staff at the Subic Bay Naval Base in the Philippines. He later spent 14 years in Washington, the last three from 1980 to 1983 as surgeon general of the Navy.

Now retired from the Navy with the rank of vice admiral, he holds an academic rank of instructor in the department of public health.

For the Record
Los Angeles Times Saturday November 15, 1986 San Diego County Edition Metro Part 2 Page 3 Column 1 Metro Desk 3 inches; 84 words Type of Material: Correction
Because of an editing error, The Times on Friday erroneously reported details of the career of Dr. J. William Cox, former surgeon general of the United States Navy and currently associate director of the San Diego State University Graduate School of Public Health, who has been offered the job as director of the San Diego County Department of Health Services. Cox headed the Balboa Naval Hospital from 1978 to 1980 before assuming the post of surgeon general. Upon retirement in 1983, he became the associate director at the graduate school as well as receiving the rank of professor of public health.

Cox received his medical degree and doctorate from St. Louis University.

The appointment of a new director is part of a reorganization of the beleaguered county health services department proposed last week by top county administrators. The plan calls for a doctor to head the department to improve medical control of the department's responsibilities and to aid in recruitment.

The department, with a $145-million annual budget, has been wracked by problems of substandard care at its Hillcrest Mental Hospital and Edgemoor Geriatric Hospital, including a cutoff of Medicare funds at Hillcrest.

County officials have scheduled a press conference Monday to announce selection of the new director.

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