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Daniel Derksen MD

Daniel  Derksen MD

Professor, Public Health Policy and Management Section, CEP Department Chair, Center for Rural Health Director

Community, Environment & Policy Department

1295 N. Martin
Campus PO Box: 245210
Drachman Hall A235
Tucson, AZ 85724
(520) 626-3085


Daniel Derksen, MD, is the Walter H. Pearce Endowed Chair & Director of the Center for Rural Health (CRH), and Professor in Public Health Policy and Management section at the University of Arizona’s Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health. As CRH Director, he oversees the State Office of Rural Health, the Rural Hospital Flexibility Program, and the Small Rural Hospital Improvement Program. 

After graduating from the University of Arizona College of Medicine in 1984, Dr. Derksen completed his family medicine residency at the University of New Mexico (UNM) where he worked as a faculty member for 25 years. 

In 2011 Governor Susana Martinez appointed Dr. Derksen Director, New Mexico Office of Health Care Reform where he submitted the state’s health insurance exchange establishment proposal funded by CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) for $34.3 million. 

Dr. Derksen completed a Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellowship in 2008 with U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman. He researched and drafted federal legislative provisions to improve the nation’s supply and distribution of the health workforce that were included in Title V of the “Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act.”   

Dr. Derksen was president of the New Mexico Medical Society in 2009 and worked on medical homes legislation for the state’s Medicaid programs, which was signed into law (HB 710). He serves as chair of the American Academy of Family Physicians Commission on Governmental Advocacy.  He serves on the American Hospital Association’s Governing Council Section on Rural or Small Hospitals.  He was President of the NM Academy of Family Physicians (2000) and the Greater Albuquerque Medical Association (2003). 

Dr. Derksen was principal investigator of state, federal, contract and private foundation funding in excess of $48 million. His health services research interests include improving health care coverage for the uninsured, enhancing access to quality health care, reducing health disparities, and implementing coordinated, community and team-based health services for rural, underserved and vulnerable communities and populations. 

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The University of Arizona