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Governor Dunleavy’s Executive Order to Divide DHSS Becomes Law

Mar 21, 2022

Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy’s Executive Order 121, to divide the State’s largest department in two, has become law and takes effect July 1. The reorganization of the Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) will create two smaller, more nimble departments focused on a more proactive approach to serving Alaskans.

“Reorganization will create an environment for innovation and greater responsiveness,” said Governor Dunleavy. “The two departments will be able to manage their programs more efficiently and more responsibly to the constituents they serve. And they’ll be able to work on long-term strategic goals such as focused stakeholder engagement, federal partner negotiations, and Alaska-specific solutions for health care.”

The budget of DHSS is bigger than 12 other state departments’, the legislature, court system and Governor’s office combined. A small executive team of five people manage 3,200 employees.

Governor Dunleavy’s Executive Order divides DHSS into two departments that are aligned by functionality:

  • Dept. of Health (DOH) aligns divisions that focus on payments, processes and programs
  • Dept. of Family and Community Services (DFCS) offers direct care to Alaskans 24/7 either in a facility or in the community

“The reorganization was designed to not disrupt services to beneficiaries or payments to providers,” said DHSS Commissioner Adam Crum. “These two departments allow for proper management and support to work on improving critical services delivered to and for Alaskans.”

View a pdf on the reorganization. Read EO 121 here.

The news conference is streaming live and will be recorded. It can be viewed on Governor Dunleavy’s facebook page.