Governor’s rotation of acting secretaries inexcusable

We certainly wish Dr. Denise Johnson the best as she begins to serve as acting state health secretary, as the Associated Press reported in Tuesday’s Sun-Gazette.

But we also must pause for a moment to acknowledge the stunning failure of Gov. Tom Wolf and his administration in naming the third acting state secretary of health since Dr. Rachel Levine left to serve as U.S. assistant secretary of health in March 2021.

For 13 months — more than a year — the state’s Department of Health has been led by an unvetted, interim figure. The state now is on their third acting health secretary, after the departures of Alison Beam and Keara Klinepeter.

This turnover and the administration’s inability to nominate and confirm a health secretary through proper channels would be questionable in normal times.

During a persistent pandemic it is inexcusable.

We hope Dr. Johnson is successful in leading the department. But we must note that Gov. Wolf’s game of musical chairs is a failure on his part.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *


Starting at $4.62/week.

Subscribe Today