Dr. Aldona Wos Tells News 2 IT Problems Hampering Efficiency In DHHS

11:43 PM, Jan 6, 2013   |    comments
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Raleigh, NC -- The state of North Carolina's largest department, Health and Human Services, is structurally broken.

That is according to the new head of the department.  

Dr. Aldona Wos was just appointed by Governor-elect Pat Mccrory as Secretary of DHHS.

In the department's own description of itself, officials boast their work touches the lives of virtually every North Carolinian from birth to death.

Dr. Wos says it will be difficult to "accomplish anything" with the level of dysfunction she's uncovered in her department.

News 2's Faith Abubey sat down with the highly energetic and passionate Dr. Wosh Friday afternoon in her Raleigh transition headquarters.

Starting December 5th, when Wos will be sworn into her new position, she says she'll have 18,000 employees under her authority but she won't be able to communicate with roughly 6,000 of them.

Wos says those state employees in her department don't have a work email account; the state just wouldn't pay for them.

"I think it is important for the citizens of North Carolina to realize that unless you fix the broken structural problems, it's very, very difficult to deal with the real issues we should be dealing with that we all care about," Wos said.

In addition to that, Wos says, the Department of Health and Human Services is scattered and employees are housed in 61 different buildings.

The former US Ambassador further explained that instead of working to comply with the new health care law or food stamps or the growing obesity issues in NC, she'll first have to fix the broken structure and technology problem.

"The issues of providing medical care, or dealing with Medicaid reform or dealing with the mental healthcare issues that in our state and in our country, can't even be addressed if you can't have efficient communication and efficient it system!" she said.

In her review of DHHS, Wos says she found several other problems and could come across even more as she settles into her new position.

Meantime, she says another internal department issue she's confronted with is the absence of a succession plan for top employees.

Wos says the state's largest department has no plan in place to replace top-level employees when they leave their positions; and right now there are several critical positions open.

Secretary-elect Wos will be working lawmakers to address the problem but is also urging North Carolinians - those well-versed in computers - to offer their services.

News 2 will have more of Faith Abubey's lengthy sit-down interview with Doctor Wos.

She talked about growing up in communist Poland, her plans for NC as the head of DHHS and how the Affordable Care Act dubbed "Obamacare" will affect residents in the state.

Stay with WFMY News 2 for updates.

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