Merger between two North Dakota government agencies finalized

(Bismarck, ND) – Two North Dakota government agencies are officially joining forces and merging under one banner.

The new North Dakota Department of Health and Human Services is the combination of the Department of Health and the Department of Human Services. ND Department of Health and Human Services executive director Chris Jones said the merger may be complete, but the job is not done.

“The work will continue for a year,” Jones said, “there are so many opportunities to integrate programs to better serve the citizens of North Dakota. This just removed a few barriers that existed in the past.”

Jones says the new department will have new goals and challenges, but will otherwise operate as normal. It describes how inflation is affecting their ability to spend money on their departments, focusing on childcare assistance and prioritizing statewide behavioral health that requires cooperation to attack effectively. The issues that Jones says are all inhibited by one key factor.

“I wish I had a silver bullet for all of these problems, especially for all of these industries, but it’s going to be tough years from a labor perspective,” Jones said. “We will certainly work with our legislators during the next session to try to solve some of these problems.

You can view the new website designed for the Department of Health and Social Services by clicking here.

Ashley C. Reynolds