Associate Director of Patient Care Services
VA Altoona health care
Mr. Chris Rickens was named Associate Director of Patient Care Services of the James E. Van Zandt VA Medical Center (VAMC) in Altoona, PA, in April 2019.
As ADPCS, Mr. Rickens assists with the management of an annual budget of approximately $160 million. Mr. Rickens is tasked with the oversight of all nursing staff, Chaplain services, and nutrition services within the main facility and five Community Based Outpatient Clinics throughout a 14-county catchment area. The healthcare system serves approximately 26,500 Veterans and provides more than 236,000 outpatient visits per year.
Prior to his current appointment, Mr. Rickens served as a Registered Nurse Field Representative for The Joint Commission. Since beginning his career in healthcare in 1983 as a surgical technologist, he spent 35 years in various roles in healthcare, culminating his career as the Chief Nursing Officer at UPMC Altoona for almost 11 years. Additionally, Mr. Rickens worked as a staff nurse, charge nurse, nurse manager and director of surgical services at Bon Secours Holy Family Hospital.
Born and raised in Cresson, PA, Mr. Rickens earned his Master’s in Health and Human Service Administration and Bachelor’s in Nursing from Mount Aloysius College. He has lived in Altoona for the past 22 years. He is currently a member of the American Organization of Nurse Executives.