The Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) today announced that Dr. Jewel Mullen has accepted a senior position with the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, Department of Health and Human Services. She will join the office in the New Year.
"Serving Connecticut residents for nearly the past five years as the state’s Public Health Commissioner has been a tremendous privilege, as has working with the many dedicated professionals at DPH,” said Dr. Mullen. “Together, we tackled many public health challenges, and made changes to the department which will help further its vision for healthy communities across the state. Governor Malloy has been extremely supportive of our efforts to make Connecticut a healthier state for all its residents, and I thank him for the opportunity to serve and his confidence in my leadership.”
As Connecticut’s Public Health Commissioner, Dr. Mullen has led efforts that include advancing population health improvement and health equity, reducing racial disparities in low birth weight and infant mortality, improving end-of-life care, and strengthening emergency preparedness and response.
Dr. Mullen launched several performance-based initiatives at DPH that promote a culture of quality. These include an agency quality plan which provides a comprehensive performance management framework for how DPH establishes, manages, deploys, and monitors quality throughout the agency, the completion of the LEAN process to improve programmatic areas, and leadership training for over ten percent of agency staff.
Other department accomplishments that occurred under Commissioner Mullen's leadership include:
An organizational strategic plan that establishes a unified vision for the agency's future and the shared work ahead.
Establishing health equity as the foundational principle for all of the department’s work, including the establishment of a new Office of Health Equity, which supports state and federal initiatives that emphasize the principle of health as a human right and social good for all people as well as the recognition that Connecticut residents hold multiple statuses in addition to race and ethnicity that may predispose them to toward health inequity.
Healthy Connecticut 2020, a state health assessment and comprehensive plan that includes goals, objectives, and strategies to improve the health of Connecticut by 2020.
Live Healthy Connecticut, a coordinated chronic disease prevention and health promotion plan, which addresses obesity, diabetes, heart health, and asthma. The plan incorporates policy and systems changes that are likely to have the broadest and longest lasting impact.
A successful expansion of the state's childhood vaccination program, which added three lifesaving immunizations to those available to Connecticut children across the state.
Modernizing state hospice regulations to improve access to patients and families.
The opening of the new Connecticut Public Health Laboratory in Rocky Hill
Rebuilding the state’s Oral Health and Injury Prevention Programs
The launch of the Medical Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (MOLST) initiative. MOLST serves to encourage more clinicians to have conversations with their patients about end of life care and treatment options before a crisis occurs, and to promote the value of having written statements that clarify treatment plans for patients and physicians.
During her tenure as Commissioner, Dr. Mullen served as the 2014-2015 President of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, a national organization which represents the state health commissioners across the country. During her term, she led her presidential challenge which focused on building partnerships to promote healthy aging in communities.
Appointed Public Health Commissioner by Governor Malloy in December 2010 and reappointed in 2014, Dr. Mullen has combined clinical work, research, teaching, and administration throughout a career focused on improving the health of all people, especially the underserved.