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Governor Kathy Hochul announced Dr. Mary T. Bassett has been appointed Commissioner of the state Department of Health.

Dr. Bassett is the former commissioner of the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, serving in that role from 2014 to 2018. She currently serves as director of the Francois-Xavier Bagnoud (FXB) Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University and FXB Professor of the Practice of Health and Human Rights in the department of Social Behavioral Sciences at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

“I am humbled and honored to return to my home state of New York to lead the Department of Health at this pivotal time,” Bassett said in a statement. “The pandemic underscored the importance of public health, while also revealing inequities driven by structural racism. As we move to end the pandemic, we have a unique opportunity to create a state that is more equitable for all New Yorkers. I look forward to working toward this with Governor Hochul and the team at the Department of Health.”

Her appointment is effective December 1.

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