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Henrik Love Hanssen (né Lövborg) is a consultant general surgeon who works at Holby City Hospital. He joined the hospital in October 2010 as the new joint director of surgery, serving alongside cardiothoracic surgeon Connie Beauchamp.

Biography

Medical career prior to Holby

Hanssen was the youngest surgeon to become a consultant in the United Kingdom in 25 years. Prior to his transfer to Holby City Hospital, he elevated two NHS hospital trusts to foundation trust status. (HC: "Shifts")

Transfer to Holby City Hospital

Leaving the past behind is difficult. It can be bewildering — frightening even — but it's also vital. It's what keeps us alive. So we must look to the future; we must move forwards. It isn't going to be easy, but it's time for a change.
— Hanssen's first speech to his new staff. (HC: "Shifts")

In October 2010, Connie Beauchamp was appointed as Holby City Hospital's new Director of Surgery, and the Holby City Hospital board decided, following the tenures of Ric Griffin and Michael Spence as joint directors of surgery, that having two directors was beneficial. However, the strategic health authority saw Connie as an "unknown quantity" and issued the hospital with an ultimatum — accept Hanssen as their choice for joint director of surgery with Connie Beauchamp and make efficiencies or close half of the hospital's wards and merge them with St James' Hospital.

Ultimately, Hanssen was selected, and he and Connie were faced with making at least 5% of the hospital's staff redundant (HC: "Shifts") in order to save around £200,000. Hanssen proposed making Ric Griffin redundant, but Connie was vehemently opposed to the idea and wanted to avoid cutting staffing levels. However, Connie eventually conceded that redundancies were essential, and Hanssen allowed her to make the final decision on who was let go; she ultimately decided to spare Ric and dismissed six nurses instead. (HC: "The Short Straw")

In November, while Connie was in London visiting her sick father, Hanssen carried out operational audits and devised a new discharge policy that would halve the number of used ward beds in order to save money. (HC: "Betrayal", "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year") He also found that Elliot Hope was underperforming; he warned Connie that, if Elliot failed to improve, he would be made redundant. Connie was keen to show Hanssen that Elliot was still at the top of his game, but Hanssen later learned that Elliot had lied to one of his patients about their child still being alive. (HC: "Betrayal")

On 7 December, Elliot was scheduled to perform a Nuss procedure — a highly expensive operation — but Connie's patience started to wear thin when Elliot refused to discharge a patient named Emily who he deemed as being vulnerable. When Elliot walked out of the Nuss procedure and prioritised Emily when she was readmitted as an emergency, Connie voiced her concerns to Hanssen about the effect of Elliot's job on his health and suggested that "the kindest thing to do [would] be to reconsider his position". (HC: "Losing Game") Consequently, Hanssen arranged for Elliot to undergo a stress test. (HC: "The Lying Kind")

As a result of the new discharge policies, Connie's father William was discharged (HC: "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year") and readmitted on Christmas Day with a pleural effusion; he was later diagnosed with stage-four lung cancer. Later, Hanssen confronted Connie after she pressured the family of a patient into agreeing to organ donation and went against protocol; sick of the cuts and redundancies, Connie promptly resigned and warned Hanssen that it would have been a "huge" mistake to get rid of Elliot. (HC: "Snow Queens")

Hospital shooting

On 5 December 2017, Hanssen oversaw the transfer of the equipment of the eminent neurosurgeon and close friend John Gaskell to a basement-level wet laboratory after appointing him as the hospital's director of surgical innovation. (HC: "Group Animal - Part One") Later in the day, after Gaskell introduced Hanssen, Sacha and Essie to Laszlo Furz, whose motor neuron disease he claimed to have cured, they were informed of a power outage and a gunman on AAU, and Hanssen ordered for the hospital to be put on lockdown. Outside the lab, the medics discovered that Jac had been shot in the back, and they were forced to use basic equipment to treat her. Despite Sacha's objections, Hanssen supported Gaskell's suggestion of using a haemostatic patch to fix one of Jac's major blood vessels.

As Hanssen attempted to have equipment delivered to the basement, Gaskell informed Hanssen that Fredrik had been identified as the shooter. Determined to stop his son, Hanssen left his colleagues and proceeded to search for Fredrik. On Darwin, Hanssen was horrified to discover that Fredrik had shot Ollie in the head as he was operating on David, and Roxanna urged him to stop Fredrik before he could harm anyone else.

On Keller, Hanssen managed to prevent Fredrik from breaking into the theatre room where the ward's occupants were hiding and confronted him. Once an armed police unit arrived at the scene, Hanssen attempted to negotiate with his son, but Fredrik asserted that he did not want anything from him anymore and loudly declared that he would decide how the situation ended. As the two began sizing each other up, with Fredrik asserting that Hanssen was not a part of the hospital's "family" and proclaiming that he was there to "end it", the police shot Fredrik in the chest, instantly killing him. A hysterical Hanssen, desperate to save his son, rushed Fredrik into theatre and demanded the lifts be turned back on, but he eventually realised that Fredrik was dead and wept. (HC: "Group Animal - Part Two")

Trivia

  • When Hanssen first arrived at Holby, he earned nicknames such as "The Angel of Death", "Horrid Henrik", "Henrik the Heron" and "The Slasher". (HC: "The Short Straw", "Snow Queens")
  • He detests tomatoes and considers them "the Devil's fruit". (HC: "Tough, Love")

Behind the scenes

Guy Henry initially portrayed Henrik Hanssen in Holby City from October 2010 to October 2013.

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