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Dr. Cheryl Bettigole to resign as Philadelphia health commissioner

Philadelphia Health Commissioner Dr. Cheryl Bettigole to resign
Philadelphia Health Commissioner Dr. Cheryl Bettigole to resign 00:25

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Dr. Cheryl Bettigole is resigning as Philadelphia's health commissioner effective Feb. 15, Mayor Cherelle Parker announced Friday. Parker named Deputy Health Commissioner Frank Franklin as the city's interim health commissioner.

The mayor said the search for Philadelphia's next health commissioner will be nationwide.

"Dr. Bettigole has served our city and citizens well as health commissioner, and we thank her for all her public service to Philadelphia," Parker said in a news release.

Bettigole has served as Philadelphia's health commissioner since 2021. She was named the city's interim health commissioner on May 14 after Dr. Thomas Farley stepped down for his mishandling of remains belonging to the 1985 MOVE bombing victims. In November 2021, former Mayor Jim Kenney named her the full-time commissioner.

In a news release, Parker highlighted Bettigole's commitment to developing a five-year plan focused on equity in the department, improving primary care access and preparations for future health emergencies,

During her time as health commissioner, Bettigole helped push COVID-19 vaccines out to Philadelphia residents and helped lead efforts to multiple mass displaced people, including Afghan and Ukrainian evacuees and migrants coming from Texas.

Philadelphia's health department also renewed its accreditation through the Public Health Accreditation Board and Project Public Health Ready under Bettigole.

"It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as health commissioner for the past three years," Bettigole said in a statement. "I am immensely proud of the work that has taken place in the Health Department and am profoundly grateful for the professionalism, expertise, and dedication found within the employees who I was fortunate to serve with."

Franklin has been Philadelphia's deputy health commissioner for the past three years.

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