Editor's note: This content, originally published on April 18, was updated on April 19 to reflect a change to enforcement of the mask mandate.
Fortune recently featured Delta’s Chief Health Officer, Dr. Henry Ting, and how his leadership on taking care of employees’ and customers’ health and well-being has evolved as COVID-19 transitions from a pandemic to a manageable respiratory virus.
Dr. Ting has increasingly focused his attention on the well-being of employees and customers alike, encompassing everything from mental health to financial literacy.
“The majority of us have experienced something on the spectrum of emotional stress, anxiety, burnout, or mental health crises,” Dr. Ting told Fortune. “Obviously we want to be the employer of choice for the workforce of the future. We believe that enhancing health and well-being enhances confidence and loyalty in our business.”
Dr. Ting began his relationship with Delta as a leader at the Mayo Clinic, which worked with the airline at the outset of the pandemic to advise on health topics like cleaning practices and ventilation. But his role is much more than that, with Dr. Ting approaching his job much like a chief financial officer would financial strategies and performance.
“I never would have joined Delta to be the chief COVID officer. … My role as the chief health officer is to enable and oversee people strategies, and at Delta, we believe this is vital to achieving our business goals,” Dr. Ting said.
Under Dr. Ting’s leadership, Delta implemented industry-leading protocols like the Delta CareStandard to keep employees and customers safe during the pandemic. The airline is continuing with its science-based approach to health and safety, including in its advocacy to end the U.S. mask mandate on airplanes and in airports as COVID-19 rates decline and widely available treatment and prevention options improve. The mandate was recently extended to May 3, then following the ruling of a U.S. district court judge on Monday, the Biden administration announced that the Transportation Security Administration will no longer enforce the federal mandate requiring masks in all U.S. airports and on board aircraft.
“These pandemic restrictions that we’ve implemented over the last two years were always meant to be lifted as soon as it was safe to do so,” Dr. Ting told Fortune.
Read the full article on Fortune’s website.