The Iowa Departments of Public Health (IDPH) and Human Services (DHS) are one step closer to becoming a single agency. Today the Departments released the final change package and functional organizational chart. This serves as the roadmap to bring together both agencies under a single leadership structure. The goal of this work is to strengthen coordination amongst existing services and provide more comprehensive services to all Iowans. This will also allow us to gain efficiencies and better leverage resources to reinvest in our system. There are no plans for layoffs or to discontinue existing programs or services.
This work is the culmination of nearly two years of meetings with IDPH and DHS staff, local public health, community partners, stakeholders, and the public to gather feedback on how to establish a unified health and human services agency to better support all Iowans. These conversations resulted in a prioritized set of recommendations on how the agencies can work together to align programs and services. These recommendations are outlined in the final change package published today here.
This includes a functional organizational chart that outlines the major functions of the combined agency. Leveraging the resources, tools, and specialized expertise in both departments will allow us to better focus on overall population health and community wellbeing for all Iowans. The goal is to establish a true health and human services system that address the full continuum from prevention to intervention.
The next step in this process is the development of a detailed table of organization down to the division, bureau, and program level.
“This is a major milestone in a monumental effort to really think holistically about how we serve Iowans. Our teams have put in a lot of effort—amidst a global pandemic with a lot of lessons learned on the gaps in our system—to layout a path to a better system. The information we’re sharing today is the culmination of countless conversations, listening sessions, and feedback from around the state. I am proud of the recommendations put forward and am excited to begin the real work of bringing our agencies together,” said Director Kelly Garcia. “Keep in mind, this work is just beginning and we will work closely with, and solicit feedback from our clients, stakeholders and legislators throughout the months and years ahead.”