COLUMBUS, Ohio (WKBN) – The Ohio departments of Health and Aging have named their new medical director.

Dr. John M. Weigand, a central Ohio physician, who has served as a leader in the state’s COVID-19 pandemic response, has been appointed to the position.

Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff said Weigand is up to the task due to his work thus far to protect those living in nursing homes and other congregate care settings.

“Dr. Weigand has long served aging Ohioans and didn’t hesitate to jump in to fill critical roles in the state’s COVID-19 pandemic response. We are fortunate to have the opportunity to tap into his expertise and experience as we tackle the state’s most pressing public health issues and strive to advance the health and well-being of all Ohioans.”

Dr. Weigand, who started in his new role earlier this month, previously served as president and managing partner at Central Ohio Geriatrics, located in Columbus and Granville. Beginning in 2015, he served as Chief Medical Officer at National Church Residences, a non-profit organization providing affordable housing for vulnerable older adults; and medical director at Kendal at Granville, an older adult residential community.

He earned his medical degree from the University Cincinnati College of Medicine and served as a major in the U.S. Air Force Medical Corps.

In the newly-created role at the Ohio Department of Aging, Weigand will assist with the development and implementation of statewide, older adult public health policies and programs, with an emphasis on helping older adults remain active and independent in the community for as long as possible.

At the Ohio Department of Health, Weigand will help guide the state’s pandemic response and will work on developing approaches to address all public health needs.