FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) — The Chief Medical Officer for United Health Centers in San Joaquin Valley passed away Saturday due to COVID-19 related causes, according to the medical group.

Officials say Dr. Robert Shankerman was in intensive care at Saint Agnes Medical Center since early August. It is not clear how Dr. Shankerman contracted the virus.

Dr. Shankerman was UHC’s Chief Medical Officer since 2014, he was responsible for clinical operations at 21 health centers in the Central Valley where over 125,000 patients receive their primary healthcare in Fresno, Tulare, and Kings Counties.

Dr. Robert Shankerman is survived by his partner of more than 20-years, Dr. Regis Debarros, who is also a physician with United Health Centers.