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Two join county health board


Last updated 5/11/2021 at 3:48pm


A local physician and the retired chief of the Colorado Springs Fire Department were appointed as new members to the El Paso County Board of Health.

Dr. Richard Vu, an internal medicine specialist at Matthews-Vu Medical Group, and Ted Collas, a long-time paramedic and recently retired chief of CSFD, joined the Board of Health on April 28.  Their appointments were made by the El Paso Board of County Commissioners March 30.

"I've had the pleasure of working closely with Dr. Richard Vu and Ted Collas during the COVID-19 pandemic response and on other community efforts, and I'm excited to continue working with them in their new roles on our Board of Health," said Susan Wheelan, director of El Paso County Public Health. "Dr. Vu has been a local leader in expanding health care opportunities in our region, and Chief Collas was instrumental in the creation of the fire department's community assistance and mental health programs. Their commitment to the goals of Public Health will benefit everyone in El Paso County."

Vu is a board-certified internist, practicing at Matthews-Vu Medical Group. He received his medical degree from Northwestern University Medical School, and completed his residency in Internal Medicine at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center in Chicago. Vu has been serving patients in Colorado Springs since 2004.

"I am honored and privileged to join the Board of Health," said Vu. "I hope to be able to contribute in a meaningful way."

Collas retired earlier this year after a 36-year career with the Colorado Springs Fire Department, the last five as its chief. He was an emergency medical technician for 25 years and served as a paramedic for 17 of those years. He oversaw the largest emergency medical services agency in El Paso County during his tenure as fire chief and the community and public health division of the department.

"I believe that every person in the community should be treated with dignity and have equitable access to health care," Collas said. "From the start of my career as an EMT, I've always focused on making sure we provide services to anyone, especially those who tend to be overlooked."


As the governing body for El Paso County Public Health, the Board of Health is responsible for developing public health policies, approving a local public health improvement plan, advising the Public Health director and overseeing Public Health financial matters.

"While Dr. Richard Vu and Ted Collas have both played integral roles to the county's pandemic response, their commitment to promote and protect public health will allow us to continue our vision for everyone to achieve optimal health," said Dr. James Terbush, president of the Board of Health. "I also want to thank the service of the outgoing members of the board, Dr. Robert Bux and Victoria Broerman, who oversaw the growth of new programs and initiatives."


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