VIKAND Strengthens Clinical Leadership Team 


Published Mar 5, 2023 12:51 PM by The Maritime Executive

Global healthcare specialist VIKAND has added two additional medical directors to strengthen its clinical leadership team to support its growing client base. 

Doctor Tanya Engelbrecht has been promoted from her fleet doctor role at VIKAND to become Medical Director for Viking Ocean, one of VIKAND’s key clients. She has over 20 years’ experience as medical doctor in community, public and private health institutes where she has consistently enhanced staff performance and productivity. She also has a proven track record of fostering optimum operations and process improvements by restructuring and implementing healthcare policies. 

She joined VIKAND in 2018 as a cruise ship doctor and was promoted to fleet doctor in 2022 where she was responsible for providing quality assurance for the onboard medical teams.
Her responsibilities as Medical Director will be to support the clinical healthcare services provided by VIKAND’s onboard medical teams to Viking’s crews and passengers. 

Dr. Thomas Gionis brings a wealth of experience to his role as Medical Director for VIKAND’s US flagged client vessels and some of the US based operators.

Dr. Gionis is an MD-JD-MPH (Physician – Attorney - Public Health Specialist). He is a fully trained cardiovascular surgeon who completed his emergency medicine research fellowship at Harvard-MGH, where he lectured for over a decade in advanced trauma life support. He is also Board Certified by the American Board of Quality Assurance & Utilization Review Physicians and is a Fellow of the American Institute of Healthcare Quality and the American College of Forensic Examiners. Dr. Gionis has been practicing medicine for 47 years; 37 of which were in the Emergency Department

Prior to joining VIKAND, he worked as senior physician for Viking Cruise Lines.  

His key responsibilities will be providing clinical support to VIKAND’s US flagged client vessels, US based clients and operational support to the shipboard medical operations teams. He will also be reviewing and implementing national medical requirements to ensure compliance, supporting client engagement from a clinical aspect, and continued quality assurance for the medical services provided by VIKAND.

Dr. Engelbrecht and Dr. Gionis join VIKAND’s growing team of Medical Directors under the leadership of Chief Medical Officer Dr. Bill Heymann. 
“Having Tom and Tanya join our leadership team of medical practitioners will enhance the care and clinical support we can offer our clients. Their proven management credentials as well as their clinical experience working in the maritime industry will be invaluable,” said Dr. Heymann.

“I would like to welcome Tom to the team and congratulate Tanya on her promotion. Tom is an outstanding physician whose organisational and strategic planning skills will help develop and improve VIKAND’s medical approach to our growing US market. Tanya has demonstrated that she can inspire her staff to provide outstanding patient care while her in-depth knowledge of healthcare policies and procedures will prove invaluable in her new role.  These new appointments will mean that our onboard medical professionals will have two more trusted and respected Medical Directors to help mentor and guide them in all aspects of their working lives,” added Dr. Karl Bergsten, Associate Chief Medical Officer for VIKAND.


VIKAND provides medical solutions and public health services to the cruise industry.  Operating 24/7 around the world, we are committed to delivering best in class healthcare solutions through pro-active and strong partnerships. VIKAND manages over 4,100 daily medical encounters across 220 vessels, supporting the medical and mental wellness needs of 160,000 crew with experienced onboard and onshore medical teams.  We act as a partner for our customers, guiding them through the regulatory and safety challenges facing shipping, whilst delivering tangible benefits to achieve the highest level of care onboard.  Our holistic approach and detailed understanding of maritime healthcare needs is complemented with state-of-the-art technologies to inform our decision making.   


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