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Tue May 12, 2020, 02:53 PM

In abrupt move, Connecticut replaces health commissioner amid pandemic

(Reuters) - Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont said on Tuesday that he was replacing his public health commissioner, in an abrupt decision to shake up leadership of the agency at the heart of the state’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Lamont said in a statement that Department of Social Services Commissioner Deidre Gifford would take over as head of the state’s public health department, replacing Renee Coleman-Mitchell, effective immediately.

While the statement did not disclose a reason for the change, Coleman-Mitchell has been the subject of controversy since taking the helm last year, including an allegation of racial discrimination by a former deputy commissioner.

The move also comes one day after Connecticut disclosed that it had surpassed 3,000 deaths from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus. It is one of the hardest-hit states due in part to its proximity to New York City, although like other states, it has struggled with large numbers of deaths in nursing homes.

Read the rest at: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-usa-connecticut/in-abrupt-move-connecticut-replaces-health-commissioner-amid-pandemic-idUSKBN22O2QK

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