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Mississippi State Department of Health announces statewide reorganization

Monday the Mississippi State Department of Health announced an agency reorganization. 

Currently organized into nine public health districts, the agency will shift to a three-region model effective July 1. Regional offices will be located in Tupelo, Jackson and Biloxi.

“By closing two-thirds of our district offices, we’re immediately saving $1.5 million in administrative overhead,” said State Health Officer Dr. Mary Currier.

MSDH hopes the reorganization will greatly reduce administrative costs without affecting services delivered to the public.

“We have reduced district level leadership and our overall agency workforce through retirements, resignations and reassignments,” Currier said. “We have also realigned federal funds to support our clinic and district operations; therefore no layoffs within county clinics and district offices are anticipated at this time.”

At the same time, the supervision of many county-level programs — immunizations, tuberculosis control, epidemiology, disease intervention and emergency preparedness — will be centralized to relieve some of the burden in the field.

Currier said the goal of this reorganization has always been to reduce overhead and streamline operations while maintaining core public health services in the state and minimizing the impact on service delivery.

“Adapting to changes in budget and revenue has been a fluid process. We are continually working hard to determine where more cuts can be made, if needed, and we will continue to monitor and evaluate our programs and services throughout the state,” she said. “We are now and always will be committed to protecting and promoting the health of all Mississippians.”

Lincoln County has been part of Southwest Public Health District, or District VII.