Utah DOH and DHS release organizational structure draft for merger

The Utah Department of Health (DOH) and Department of Human Services (DHS) released a draft of their new Department of Health and Human Services’ (DHHS) organizational chart last week, marking a “critical milestone” into the new department’s implementation. 

 

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The new organization is broken up into three main branches: Operations, Healthcare Administration, and Community Health and Wellbeing. In each section, services from both departments were centralized and consolidated to make it easier for people to gain easier access services. 

See the organizational structure draft here. 

Tracy Gruber, executive director of DHS and incoming executive director to the new DHHS, will have several key positions reporting directly to her such as the communications director, assistant attorney general field, and legislative affairs. 

Gruber said this is an important marker for the new DHHS and it supports their vision to advocate and serve all individuals and communities within Utah. She said it is a person-centered model designed to deliver services and programs seamlessly to all. 

Gruber said the chart represents input from the workgroups, stakeholder engagement, engagement from public Q&As, and feedback from an online form on their DHHS plan website. 

The creation of the map allows the Steering Committee, who is making most of these decisions about department implementation as a whole, to start thinking about budgeting different sections, staffing needed for the new department, rules, and policy changes, according to Gruber. These preliminary metrics are needed to help the legislature make decisions when they convene again in January. 

“We hope that it provides a clearer picture of what our combined department will look like.”

Gruber said many different functions can be assigned to one unit in an effort to centralize services that often interact in one communication space. This can lead to easier communication and make it easier for the patient to access related services in one unified area.

Expectations around communicating and collaborating between sections are still in place, said Gruber. She said they are still working to make intersectional communication as efficient as possible. 

The Utah plan for DHHS will host any public, virtual Q&A about the new organization structure draft to spend time reviewing their decisions and responding to questions. Anyone can join via Zoom on July 27th at 12:15 pm MDT.