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Wisconsin Department of Health Services

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June 19, 2013

CONTACT: Stephanie Smiley, (608) 266-1683


MADISON—Secretary Kitty Rhoades announced that effective Wednesday, June 19, 2013 she will be taking a leave of absence for a hip replacement and recovery time. Today Secretary Rhoades offered the following statement:

“This was an extremely difficult decision for me to make, especially so early in my tenure as Secretary; however, at the urging of my family I have decided not to delay this surgery any longer. I have a wonderful executive team, who will continue to provide strong leadership for the Department of Health Services during my absence. I will be briefed and involved in decision making as my recovery allows. It is my hope to return to my post in Madison by the end of July. I had wanted to take a vacation this summer, but this isn’t exactly how I planned to do it.

As we discussed how we would handle the challenge resulting from my health situation, I was struck again by how lucky the state of Wisconsin is – and how lucky I am – to have such an exceptionally strong group of managers and staff in the Department of Health Services. I appreciate everyone’s encouragement and well wishes and am very much looking forward to returning to the Department pain-free.”

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Last Revised:  June 19, 2013