Department Of Health Shares Weekly Update On COVID-19 Investigations, Contact Tracing, Monitoring Efforts

Harrisburg, PA – The Department of Health today shared its weekly update on Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 case investigation and contact tracing data and encouraged Pennsylvanians to download the COVID Alert PA app to aid in contact tracing efforts.

“As Pennsylvania experiences increases in cases, the demand for case investigations and contact tracing increase,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “Case investigations and contact tracing are proven public health strategies to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, but in order to work successfully, we need Pennsylvanians to answer the phone. When you are confirmed positive, a public health professional will call to find out where you went while infectious and with whom you came in contact. Pennsylvanians can unite against COVID-19 by wearing a mask, washing hands, practicing social distancing, downloading the COVID Alert PA app and answering the call to stop this virus in its tracks before it affects your loved ones, co-workers or friends across the state.”

Blake Applauds Senate Confirmation of Two Local Residents to Wolf Cabinet Posts

HARRISBURG, May 13, 2015 – State Sen. John Blake (D-Lackawanna/Luzerne/Monroe) today applauded the unanimous Senate confirmation vote in favor of two Lackawanna County residents.

The Senate voted 47-0 earlier today to confirm Teresa Osborne as secretary of the Department of Aging and Karen Murphy, R.N., Ph.D., as secretary of the Department of Health.

“Teresa Osborne and Karen Murphy are excellent choices by Governor Wolf to lead the missions of the state Department of Aging and Department of Health and I am grateful that my Senate colleagues unanimously confirmed their respective nominations,” Blake said. “I have had the pleasure to work closely with both of these women over the years and I am confident that they will make a significant impact at the state level.”

Teresa Osborne had recently served as the executive director of the Luzerne/Wyoming Counties Area Agency on Aging. She has also served as the chancellor of the Diocese of Scranton; the executive director of the Lackawanna County Department of Human Services; and the executive director at the Lackawanna County Area Agency on Aging.

“Ms. Osborne has dedicated her life to improving the quality of life for the growing senior citizen population in northeastern Pennsylvania and now she will extend that dedication to seniors across the Commonwealth,” Blake added. “With significant challenges facing our seniors and their families across the state, it was imperative that Governor Wolf chose an individual such as Ms. Osborne who has a strong background in the field and good experience in public policy to lead the Department of Aging.”

Dr. Karen Murphy recently served as Director of the State Innovation Models Initiative, a $900 million investment by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation aimed at accelerating health care innovation across the nation. She is also the former president and CEO of Moses Taylor Health Care System in Scranton and is a Clinical Faculty Member in the Medicine Department at The Commonwealth Medical College.

“Ms. Murphy has a proven record of success at every level of the health care system and she has a wealth of knowledge and experience.  As someone who began her wonderful career as a nurse, she brings great sensibilities and intelligence to the PA Department of Health,” Blake said.  “As an effective leader and experienced managerial executive, she will keep our Department of Health on the cutting edge of technology and innovation in public health.”

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