Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, Hospice

Kurt Merkelz

Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, Hospice

Kurt Merkelz, M.D., was named senior vice president and chief medical officer of Compassus in 2017. He previously served as medical director for the Compassus program serving Houston.


Dr. Merkelz leads the company’s quality and clinical initiatives, ensuring delivery of quality patient outcomes and increased access to end-of-life care across the communities Compassus serves.


Throughout his career, Merkelz has focused on caring for older adults. His perseverance in raising industry benchmarks for quality hospice care earned him the Compassus R. Sean Morrison, M.D., Award for Outstanding Achievement in Hospice Physician Leadership in 2012. He is currently serving a two-year term as co-chair for the National Quality Forum (NQF)’s Measure Applications Partnership (MAP) post-acute workgroup.


He received his medical degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center and completed residencies in family medicine and geriatric medicine at the University of Cincinnati. Following his residency at the University of Cincinnati, he became assistant director of the international health program.


Merkelz is triple-board certified in hospice and palliative care medicine, family practice and geriatrics.