PITTSBURG, Kan. — Randy Cason, president of Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg, has announced plans to leave that position, which he has held for the past decade, the hospital said in a press release Thursday afternoon.

Cason has accepted a position as regional vice president for the University of Kansas Health System, beginning in January 2021.

“For the past 10 years, Randy has truly proven himself a servant leader, building connections with local health providers, advocating for the needs of others and supporting his team and helping them to succeed in their roles,” Ascension Via Christi Chief Operating Officer Kevin Strecker said in the release.

Most recently, Cason led the effort to expand healthcare services into Fort Scott after its community hospital closed in early 2019. Since February 2019, the Ascension Via Christi Emergency Department in Fort Scott has provided 24/7 care to nearly 10,000 people.

“During Randy’s time leading the Pittsburg team, he has been a champion of ensuring that poor and vulnerable populations in southeast Kansas and the four-state area have access to the care they need,” Strecker said. “Under his leadership, Randy has helped make quality and service line improvements that positively impact the patients and associates who work and live in and around Pittsburg and Fort Scott.”

Strecker will be working with the Ascension team in Pittsburg to develop and put in place a transition plan as they begin the search for a new hospital president, according to the release. In the interim, the team will be led by Pittsburg’s vice president of operations, Drew Talbott.