HHS appoints DeSalvo to head ONC

Diana Manos | Government Health IT | December 19, 2013

The Department of Health and Human Services announced Thursday morning that Karen DeSalvo, MD, City of New Orleans Health Commissioner, will take over the helm of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology on Jan. 13th [2014].

DeSalvo, also a senior health policy advisor to New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, will replace Jacob Reider, MD, who has been serving as the Acting National Coordinator for Health Information Technology since Oct. 4.

In a Dec. 19 internal letter, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius praised DeSalvo’s qualifications, describing her as a key leader of efforts to modernize the New Orleans healthcare system following Hurricane Katrina. DeSalvo has led projects to increase access to care by augmenting the city’s neighborhood-based medical homes for low income, uninsured and other vulnerable populations in the New Orleans area.

In addition, DeSalvo has served as president of the Louisiana Health Care Quality Forum, the Louisiana lead for their health information exchange and regional extension center grants...