Behavioral Health Services at Nationwide Children's Hospital Names Three New Associate Chiefs

September 22, 2022

(COLUMBUS, Ohio) - After a decade of immense growth in its behavioral health and psychology services, Big Lots Behavioral Health Services at Nationwide Children’s Hospital has established new associate section chief roles and has promoted three of its own medical directors to provide additional clinical and psychiatric leadership.

“We are at a critical point in our program’s history where we need additional psychiatry leadership to continue building on our success,” says David Axelson, MD, chief of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health and section chief of Psychiatry at Nationwide Children’s. “Fortunately, we have three outstanding senior medical directors who already provide much of this leadership. I am confident they will excel in their roles and further our advancements in providing outstanding clinical and operational care.”

Bela Gandhi, MD, has been promoted to associate chief of outpatient and intermediate levels of care for behavioral health. Dr. Gandhi came to Nationwide Children’s in 2007 after receiving her medical degree from Northeast Ohio Medical University, completing her general psychiatry residency at The Ohio State University and finishing her child and adolescent fellowship at New York Presbyterian University. While at Nationwide Children’s, she has been the medical director of the psychiatry consultation and liaison service and the medical director of outpatient services.

Rajeev Krishna, MD, PhD, MBA, is now the associate chief of behavioral health acute services, including inpatient, Youth Crisis Stabilization Unit (YCSU), Psychiatric Crisis Department, Extended Observation Suite, crisis assessment and intervention services. After completing a doctorate in computer engineering from University of Michigan, Dr. Krishna received his medical degree from The Ohio State University and then completed his adult psychiatry residency and child and adolescent fellowship at University of Michigan, where he simultaneously completed his MBA. Since arriving to Nationwide Children’s in 2013, Dr. Krishna has served as medical director for both quality improvement and inpatient services.

Nadine Schwartz, MD, is now the associate chief of the psychiatry consultation liaison service, primary care integration efforts and medical psychiatry programs. Before joining Nationwide Children’s in 2016, Dr. Schwartz was section chief of Child Psychiatry at Drexel University/St. Christopher’s Children’s Hospital. She completed her medical degree at Temple University, followed by a triple-board combined residency and fellowship in pediatrics, general psychiatry and child psychiatry at Mt. Sinai Medical Center. At Nationwide Children’s, Dr. Schwartz has served as medical director of outpatient services and medical psychiatry.

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About Nationwide Children's Hospital

Named to the Top 10 Honor Roll on U.S. News & World Report’s 2021-22 list of “Best Children’s Hospitals,” Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of America’s largest not-for-profit free-standing pediatric health care systems providing unique expertise in pediatric population health, behavioral health, genomics and health equity as the next frontiers in pediatric medicine, leading to best outcomes for the health of the whole child. Integrated clinical and research programs, as well as prioritizing quality and safety, are part of what allows Nationwide Children’s to advance its unique model of care. Nationwide Children’s has a staff of more than 13,000 that provides state-of-the-art wellness, preventive and rehabilitative care and diagnostic treatment during more than 1.6 million patient visits annually. As home to the Department of Pediatrics of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Nationwide Children’s physicians train the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric specialists. The Abigail Wexner Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the Top 10 National Institutes of Health-funded free-standing pediatric research facilities. More information is available at