Georgia Department of Community Health
The Georgia General Assembly created the Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH) in 1999 by combining the four state agencies that were responsible for purchasing and regulating healthcare into a single, new agency. The DCH is now the main state agency in Georgia that provides health care planning and purchasing. In 2009, the DCH took over the duties of the Division of Public Health and Emergency Preparedness in addition to its normal functions. The DCH is also the sole state agency for Medicaid.
In addition to fulfilling the duties of the agencies that were consolidated into the Georgia Department of Community Health, the DCH has published a mission statement about its goals for the people of Georgia:
- ACCESS to affordable, quality health care in our communities
- RESPONSIBLE health planning and use of health care resources
- HEALTHY behaviors and improved health outcomes
Georgia Department of Community Health Divisions and Offices
The Georgia Department of Community Health is run by a commissioner who is appointed by the governor of Georgia. The present commissioner is Clyde Reese, an administrative law specialist. The commissioner is in charge of overseeing the ten divisions and six offices that make up the DCH and are responsible for fulfilling the DCH's responsibilities to the citizens of Georgia.
Divisions within the DCH:
- The Emergency Preparedness and Response Division manages the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Public Health Emergency Preparedness Cooperative Agreement and the Health and Human Services Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response Hospital Preparedness Program Cooperative Agreement. Its activities include planning support for pandemic influenza and the distribution of medication during disease outbreaks.
- The Division of Financial Management deals with the DCH's financial needs, including its accounting and budgeting.
- The Office of General Counsel takes care of several administrative and legal tasks for the DCH. It creates policies to comply with federal and state record requirements, drafts rules and regulations to be considered by the Board of Community health, and supplies services for the legal part of the State Health Benefit Plans.
- Healthcare Facility Regulation Division ensures that healthcare providers are safe and competent and comply with professional standards.
- Information Technology is in charge of maintaining the systems for processing and collecting Medicaid and PeachCare for Kids payments.
- The Office of Inspector General prevents and investigates fraud related to Medicaid, PeachCare for Kids, and the State Health Benefit Plan.
- The Division of Public Health promotes healthy lifestyles for all Georgians and works to reduce deaths that are caused by avoidable accidents.
- The State Health Benefit Plan gives health insurance to state employees and their dependents.
- The Division of Medical Assistance Plans runs the state Medicaid program, which offers medical help to children, pregnant women, and people with disabilities.
- The Operations Division is in charge of human resources for the DCH as well as several other initiatives including the Office of Minority Health, the Office of Women's Health, the Georgia Commission on Men's health, the Georgia Volunteers in Health Care program, and the State Office of Rural Health.
Offices within the DCH:
- The Office of Communications serves as the DCH's liaison with the media and the public and maintains the DCH website.
- The Office of Health Improvement is a part of the Operations Division and is comprised of the Office of Minority Health, the Office of Women's Health and the Georgia Commission on Men's Health.
- Office of Health Information Technology and Transparency (HITT) facilitates the exchange of information regarding healthcare between healthcare providers, professionals, and consumers.
- Office of Legislative Affairs and External Affairs works with the Georgia General Assembly to evaluate and provide input on legislation that relates to public health in the state of Georgia.
- The Office of Procurement Services (OPS) is responsible for procuring the highest quality services possible at the lowest cost possible to fulfill the DCH's need. This office works closely with the Department of Administrative Services.
- The State Office of Rural Health is in charge of providing increased access to healthcare throughout rural Georgia.
Contact the Georgia Department of Community Health
Georgia Department of Community Health Main office
2 Peachtree Street, NW
Atlanta, GA 30303
Georgia Department of Community Health Office of Rural Health Services
502 Seventh Street South
Cordele, GA 31015-1443
Please use this form to send the DCH electronic mail: http://dch.georgia.gov/00/dch_email/0,2641,31446711_31784421,00.html