The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department has selected Dr. Noemi “Mimi” Doohan as the medical director for the county’s Health Care Centers effective Oct. 31.
As a member of the department’s executive team, Dr. Doohan will direct the 25 staff physicians, eight advanced practice practitioners and 24 contracted specialists delivering care at the county’s five Federally Qualified Health Centers and three shelter-based Health Care for the Homeless clinics.
Dr. Doohan joins Santa Barbara County with 20 years of experience in the medical field. She is board certified in family medicine and earned her medical degree at Stanford University, followed by a residency in family medicine at the Contra Costa County Regional Medical Center in Martinez, California.
She earned a Ph.D in molecular biology from UCSB and a master’s degree in public health from the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
Dr. Doohan has broad experience in all aspects of primary care as a family medicine provider and as a leader in private practice, FQHCs, rural and tribal clinics, urgent care, hospitalist medicine, street medicine, corrections, global health and medical education.
She has experience in public health as the Mendocino County Health Officer through the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, deputy health officer in Mendocino and Santa Barbara counties, and as a medical officer focusing on COVID-19 and other public health emergencies for the California Department of Public Health.
She served as co-chair of the Health Equity Committee from September 2020 through March 2022 for the California Conference of Local Health Officers.
“We are thrilled that Dr. Doohan will be our medical director leading the exceptional Health Centers physicians, clinicians and quality teams and as we pivot from pandemic footing back into our privileged role as a key provider in our county’s Health Care Safety Net Delivery System,” said Dana Gamble, deputy director of the Primary Care and Family Health Division.
“Dr. Doohan brings extensive experience in all aspects of healthcare and is exceptionally well equipped to guide our healthcare teams in providing excellent care to our patients,” she said.
Dr. Doohan has been involved locally since 2005 when she founded, along with Dr. Mark Stinson, the long-standing Santa Barbara Street Medicine program Doctors Without Walls.
As a founding medical director, she was instrumental in the development of the Santa Barbara County Medical Reserve Corps, the Public Health Department’s backup medical response team activated during disasters.
“To return home and serve the Santa Barbara County Health Care Centers as medical director is a great privilege and an honor. I am humbled by this opportunity to help lead such an exceptional public health team,” Dr. Doohan said.