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Dr. Robert Oldham Selected As New Public Health Officer

January 17, 2014

Placer County has a new Health Officer: Dr. Robert Oldham, a physician who until recently was interim Health Officer in Fresno County.

The Placer County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously at its Dec. 10 meeting to appoint Dr. Oldham to serve as Health Officer effective Jan. 6.

Dr. Oldham has worked for Fresno County since 2010, serving first as a psychiatrist and as Medical Director for the Department of Behavioral Health since 2011. Last year, he served both as Medical Director and interim Health Officer. As Interim Health Officer for Fresno County, he was responsible for core public health functions such as disease surveillance and investigation, environmental health, and emergency preparedness and response.

In Placer County, he was hired to replace Dr. Richard J. Burton, who retired recently after serving as Health Officer for the past 17 years. For the past decade, Dr. Burton also was Director of the Placer County Health and Human Services Department.

Dr. Burton’s successor as Health and Human Services Director is Jeffrey S. Brown, who had been Director of the Nevada County Health and Human Services Agency since 2005. Brown started his new job Dec. 30.  

As Placer County Health Officer, Dr. Oldham will

  • Plan, organize, direct and coordinate the County’s public health medical services and programs;
  • Consult with citizens, public officials, staff, community organizations and agencies on public health and preventative medicine issues;
  • Coordinate with the state as necessary;
  • Provide medical and administrative support to the Health and Human Services Director; and
  • Act as a medical and public health consultant to the Board of Supervisors and County Executive Officer David Boesch.

“Dr. Oldham is an outstanding public health expert who has the experience and qualifications we were looking for and a management style that is a good fit with the collaborative approaches favored by the Health and Human Services Department,” explained Brown.      

Dr. Oldham holds a Doctorate of Medicine from the University of Alabama School of Medicine and a Master’s Degree in Health Administration from Virginia Commonwealth University. He is a licensed physician who then received postdoctoral training to be both a psychiatrist and a local health officer. He is board-certified in general psychiatry, general preventive medicine and public health, psychosomatic medicine, and medical quality.

In Placer County, he will be paid a salary of approximately $246,000 and receive other management benefits.

Each county is required by state law to have a health officer responsible for helping protect the public’s health.

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