MADISON, Wis. -

The chief operating officer of University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics will serve as the organization’s interim president and chief executive officer.

Ron Sliwinski took over the position Friday, two days after UW Health president and CEO Katen-Bahensky announced her retirement. She said her retirement is effective Sept. 1 and said her position was being eliminated.

A UW Health spokeswoman told News 3 Katen-Bahensky is using time off which is why an interim CEO is being named before her retirement date. She also said there's no timeline for eliminating the position, which is why an interim CEO was named.

“Ron brings a true passion for UW Health’s mission and vision,” said David Walsh, chairman of the UWHC Authority Board. “He has a thorough understanding of UWHC’s patient care operations, its role as a nationally recognized regional referral center and its commitment to be a workplace of choice for staff and physicians.”

Sliwinski joined UW Hospital and Clinics in 2009 as vice president for professional services and served in that role for eight months before taking the position of senior vice president and COO.

In an email to employees, Katen-Bahensky said that her position was being eliminated as part of an effort to bring UWHC and its physicians group, the UW Medical Foundation, into a single integrated organization.