Dr. Maria E. Franco Elected President of Medical Staff for Nicklaus Children's Hospital

Published on: 01/20/2020

Maria E. Franco, MD, pediatric pulmonologist at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, has been elected president of the hospital’s Medical Executive Committee (MEC) for a three-year term.  The MEC serves as the governing body of the hospital’s 800-member medical staff. 

Elected vice president for a three-year term is Ziad Khatib, MD, a pediatric hematologist/oncologist on the hospital’s medical staff since 1993.

Dr. Franco has been in private practice based at Nicklaus Children’s main campus since 1998.  She is board certified in both pediatric pulmonology and general pediatrics. She received her medical degree from Nuestra Señora del Rosario, Bogota and completed her residency at Crozer Chester Medical Center in Philadelphia and her fellowship in pulmonology at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children in Philadelphia.

Dr. Khatib has been in private practice with offices at the hospital since 1993. He received his medical degree from American University of Beirut, Lebanon and completed his residency in Pediatrics at Jackson Memorial Hospital and a fellowship in hematology-oncology at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.

Joining the MEC for three-year terms are Julie Kantor, MD, a pediatrician; and Christopher F. Tirotta, MD, Chief of Anesthesiology at Nicklaus Children’s.  

Nicklaus Children’s also recognizes the following outgoing MEC members whose terms conclude on Dec. 31, 2019:

  • Pablo Marcelo Laufer, MD – Outgoing President of the Medical Staff
  • Anselmo Cepero- Akselrad, MD – Outgoing Vice-President of the Medical Staff
  • Jose Rosa-Olivares, MD – Outgoing MEC Member  

About Nicklaus Children's Hospital, Where Children Matter Most ™ (2024)

Founded in 1950 as Variety Children's Hospital, Nicklaus Children's is South Florida's only licensed specialty hospital exclusively for children, with approximately 850 attending physicians, including more than 500 pediatric subspecialists. The 307-bed hospital is renowned for excellence in all aspects of pediatric medicine, with many specialty programs routinely ranked among the best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report since 2008. The hospital is also home to the largest pediatric teaching program in the southeastern United States and since 2003 has been designated an American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) Magnet facility, the nursing profession's most prestigious institutional honor. For more information, please visit www.nicklauschildrens.org.

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