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Dr. David Barbe is leading an organization with more than 9 million members.
SBJ file photo
Dr. David Barbe is leading an organization with more than 9 million members.

Mercy exec becomes World Medical Association president

Posted online

Mercy Springfield Communities executive Dr. David Barbe today started his one-year term as president of the World Medical Association.

Barbe takes over leadership of the organization representing more than 9 million physicians after a year as president-elect.

“I think what we’ve learned from Dr. Barbe during his many leadership roles, both within Mercy and beyond, is that all of us in health care are facing similar challenges,” said Lynn Britton, president and CEO of Mercy, in a news release. “He’s been a strong advocate for things like high-quality medical care for everyone, which is a global concern.

"I know he’ll continue to do what he can to improve access, and patients around the world will be better for his leadership.”

Barbe serves as physician vice president of primary care for Mercy Springfield Communities, for which he oversees 75 clinics and more than 200 physicians, said spokesperson Sonya Kullmann. He's also a practicing physician.

During an early morning videoconference, Barbe spoke to the challenges the health care industry is facing amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Those already experiencing health inequity are often those with chronic diseases who are also at increased risk for COVID-19,” he said, according to the release.

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