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Second deputy minister appointed to Yukon HSS

The existing deputy minister will focus on service delivery and COVID-19.
Tracy-Anne McPhee, the current Yukon government Health Minister, pictured at the Government of Yukon COVID-19 press conference in Whitehorse, Yukon on June 9, 2020. (Alistair Maitland Photography file)

The Yukon government says that work on healthcare reforms in the territory is continuing.

In a release put out on Dec. 16, the government said that Premier Sandy Silver has appointed Michael Hale as an additional Deputy Minister with the Department of Health and Social Services to oversee the development of the new public health agency.

Hale was previously serving as the president of Northern Vision Development and is a former vice-president of BMC Minerals and CAO of Yukon College.

The existing deputy minister, Stephen Samis, will be focused on the delivery of social services and continuing to oversee COVID-19 responses in the Yukon.

Implementing the 76 recommendations from the People Putting First report, which included healthcare reforms on everything from childcare to medical travel, will be a big job.

One of the recommendations was to create an arms-length government agency to oversee healthcare delivery and contract NGOs or other providers to deliver specialty services.

This includes responsibility for the hospitals currently under the Yukon Hospital Corporation and primary care, long-term care and treatment facilities under the Department of Health and Social Services.

“Creating a new public health agency will improve outcomes and experiences for clients, patients, families and health and social service providers,” said Minister of Health Social Services Tracy-Anne McPhee, in the statement.

Contact Haley Ritchie at