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As Delaware’s population has expanded, so too has the need for social services grown proportionately. The types of services, however, have changed very little. Generally, they are:

1. Providing assistance (financial, medical, etc.) to the citizens.
2. Establishing qualitative standards of care.
3. Licensing and regulation of medical professionals.
Delaware’s comprehensive reorganization of state government in 1969/1970 attempted to streamline its social service operations to more efficiently serve the needs of the citizens and government of Delaware. It was during that reorganization that the Department of Health and Social Services was established, combining many smaller, pre-existing heath and welfare agencies. The Department Secretary, a gubernatorially-appointed officer, was to be the administrator and head of the new department. In turn, he was to appoint directors of the following agencies and to direct and monitor their divisions’ activities:

• Division of Physical Health
• Division of Mental Health
• Division of Social Services
• Division of Corrections
• Office of Business Administration & General Services
• Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation
• Office of the Medical Examiner1
All of the Divisions were given councils to advise them on establishing procedures, advising on current developments in the field, and setting goals for the agency. They were designated as follows:
Division of Physical Health/State Board of Health

Ã? Council on Physical Health
Ã? Council on Radiation
Ã? Council on the Delaware Home and Hospital

Division of Mental Health and Mental Retardation

Ã? Council on Mental Health
Ã? Council on Mental Retardation

Division of Social Services
Ã? Council on Family Services
Ã? Council on the Blind
Ã? Council on Children and Youth

Division of Aging2

Ã? Council on the Aging

Division of Corrections

Ã? Council on Adult Correction
Ã? Council on Youth Services

Drug Control Coordinator

Ã? Council on Drug Control

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The chairpersons of each council were ex officio members of the Governors Council on Health and Social Services.3
The new agency assumed the duties of the following agencies:

• State Board of Health
• Board of Trustees of the Delaware Home and Hospital for the Chronically Ill
• Hospital Advisory Council
• Department of Mental Health (and their Board of Trustees)
• Department of Welfare
• Board of Welfare
• Youth Services Commission of Delaware
• Department of Corrections
• Commission for the Blind
• Commission for the Aging
• Commission on Children and Youth
• Board of Post-Mortem Examiners of the State of Delaware
The Division of Physical Health was administered by and synonymous with the State Board of Health (composed of the Director of the Division of Physical Health and the Secretary of DHSS). It seems the duties and responsibilities of the previously existing Board of Health; Board of Trustees of the Delaware Home and Hospital; and the Hospital Advisory Council. (Note: The Director of this Division also served as Registrar of Vital Statistics [see RG 1502] and the State Health Officer.)
This Division was responsible as well for the following regulatory agencies:

• State Board of Examiners of Barbers
• State Board of Chiropractic Examiners
• State Board of Cosmetology
• State Board of Dental Examiners
• Medical Council of Delaware
• Board of Medical Examiners
• Board of Nursing
• State Board of Examiners in Optometry
• State Board of Pharmacy
• State Examining Board of Physical Therapists
• Board of Podiatry
• State Board of Examiners of Psychologists
• State Board of Examiners of Undertakers
• State Board of Veterinary Medicine
In 1979 (62 D.L., ch. 86) all of the above boards were placed within the Division of Administrative Services (RG 1340).

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A chronology best illustrates the Department’s organizational changes in its first two decades of existence:

1971 – Office of Business Administration and General Services of Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation became “Division of . . . . “, respectively.4

– Division of Mental Health expands to Division of Mental Health and Mental Retardation.5
– Division of Corrections separates into Division of Adult Corrections and Division of Juvenile Corrections.6

1972 – Executive Order #63 changes Division of Physical Health to Division of Public Health.7
1975 – Division of Corrections removed to create separate Department of Correction.8
1976 – Creation of separate Division of Mental Health and Division of Mental Retardation.9
1977 – Established Division for the Visually Impaired.10
– Established Delaware Emergency Medical Services Advisory Council, comprised of representative members of 18 health and safety organizations to provide advice to Secretary of DHSS.11
1981 – Established Office of Emergency Medical Services.12
1983 – Established Department of Children, Youth and Their Families, a separate, cabinet-level department; abolishes Commission on Children and Youth.13
1984 – Division of Mental Health becomes Division of Alcoholism, Drug Abuse and Mental Health. Also establishes and advisory council to this new Division. Council on Drug Control is dissolved.14
1985 – Established Division of Child Support Enforcement.15
Presently in 1988 the Department’s organization scheme is as follows:

I. Office of the Secretary

A. Division of Aging
B. Division of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse

1. Bureau of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse
2. Delaware State Hospital
3. Governor Bacon Health Center
4. New Castle County Community Mental Health Center
5. Kent/Sussex Mental Health Center
6. Psycho/Social Rehabilitation Program
7. Residential Programs

C. Division of Business Administration and General Services

1. Labor Relations
2. Office Systems
3. Capital Program
4. Controller
5. Personnel
6. Budget
7. Procurement
8. Office of Computer Services

D. Division of Child Support Enforcement
E. Division of Economic Services
F. Chief Medical Examiner and Forensic Sciences Lab

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G. Division of Mental Retardation

1. Stockley Center
2. New Castle County Community Services
3. Kent and Sussex Counties Community Services

H. Division of Planning, Research and Evaluation

1. Bureau of Health Planning and Resources Development

I. Division of Public Health

1. Office of Health Education
2. Community Health Section
3. Bureau of Disease Prevention
4. Bureau of Environmental Health
5. Office of Nursing
6. Bureau of Personal and Family Health
7. New Castle County Health Unit
8. Kent County Health Unit
9. Sussex County Health Unit
10. Long Term Care Section
11. Emily P. Bissell Hospital
12. Delaware Hospital for the Chronically Ill
13. Governor Bacon Health Center

J. Division of State Service Centers (twelve centers statewide)
K. Division for the Visually Impaired

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1 57 D.L., ch. 301

2 The Commission for the Aging (RG 1512) and the Bureau of Aging, by order of 59 D.L., ch. 136, became the Division of Aging (RG 1500B) and its advisory group, the Council on the Aging (RG 1522).

3 57 D.L., ch. 301

4 58 D.L., ch. 698

5 Ibid

6 Ibid

7 Ibid

8 60 D.L., ch. 251

9 60 D.L., ch. 677

10 61 D.L., ch. 329

11 61 D.L., ch. 164

12 63 D.L., ch. 383

13 64 D.L., ch. 108

14 64 D.L., ch. 467

15 65 D.L., ch. 89
jrf/January 14, 1988; March 22, 1988; May 6, 1988

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