Dan Derksen, MD, professor and the Walter H. Pearce Endowed Chair, has been named director of the community, environment and policy division at the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health.
Dr. Derksen is director of the Arizona Center for Rural Health at the UA College of Public Health, where he oversees the State Office of Rural Health, the Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility Program and the Small Rural Hospital Improvement Program.
“Dr. Derksen will provide a strong and effective vision and leadership for the division. During his time at the college, he has proven to be an exceptional researcher and a creative leader in health policy, health administration and rural health,” said Dean Iman Hakim, MD, PhD, MPH.
Dr. Derksen said, “It’s an incredibly exciting time for the community, environment and policy division. As we welcome new faculty and students this fall, there is much for us to contribute to improve public health and health outcomes research conducted across the Arizona Health Sciences Center, and with our diverse community partners.”
Prior to joining the UA in 2012, Dr. Derksen was director of the New Mexico Office of Health Care Reform. Appointed by New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez in 2011, he submitted the state’s health insurance exchange establishment proposal, funded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Dr. Derksen completed a Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellowship in 2008 with then-U.S. Sen. 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.
He was president of the New Mexico Medical Society in 2009 and worked on medical homes legislation for the state’s Medicaid programs. Dr. Derksen chairs the American Academy of Family Physicians Commission on Governmental Advocacy and serves on the American Hospital Association’s Governing Council Section on Rural or Small Hospitals. He also serves on the Arizona Health Improvement Plan Advisory Committee to the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS).