State health director Dr. Laura Gerald resigns

After serving as State Health Director and Director of the Division of Public Health for 18 months, Dr. Laura Gerald has resigned from her position effective immediately, according to a statement from Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Dr. Aldona Wos. The announcement was sent to members of the press at 9:22 p.m. on Tuesday night.

In the three-paragraph note Wos sent to all Division of Public Health employees earlier in the evening, she gave no reason for Gerald’s resignation.

For now, Deputy Director of Public Health Danny Staley will serve as the acting director of the Division of Public Health. Former Gov. Bev Perdue appointed Gerald to the post on January 24, 2012. Before accepting the position, the pediatrician was a consultant and senior advisor for Community Care of North Carolina (CCNC) on disease management, quality improvement, cost-containment efforts and coordination of CCNC across state agencies. She also served as an advisor to the Secretary on community care and chaired the Governor’s Eugenics Compensation Task Force.

The announcement from N.C. DHHS regarding Gerald’s resignation can be found in full below.

Media release

From N.C. DHHS:

Raleigh, N.C.—Today, the Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Aldona Wos, M.D., accepted the resignation of Dr. Laura Gerald, the State Health Director and Director of the Division of Public Health, effective immediately. Earlier this evening in a note to all Division of Public Health employees, Dr. Wos wrote:

Colleagues -

Today, I have accepted the resignation of Dr. Laura Gerald, who for the past 18 months has served the people of the state as the Director of the Division of Public Health and the State Health Director, effective immediately. On behalf of nearly 18,000 DHHS employees, please join me in thanking Dr. Gerald for her service to the state and wishing her well on her future endeavors.

During this period of transition for the Department, I have asked Danny Staley, the Deputy Director of Public Health, to temporarily serve as the Acting Director of the Division of Public Health. I have also asked Robin Cummings, M.D., the Director of DHHS’ Office of Rural Health and Community Care, in addition to his current duties, to temporarily serve as the Acting State Health Director.

From newborn screenings to chronic disease prevention and management, the functions of the Division of Public Health are vital to protecting the health and safety of all North Carolinians. I thank you for your continued dedication and service as we seek to better serve our customers.

Aldona Wos, M.D.

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