On Wednesday Governor Doug Ducey announced Arizona Department of Health Services Director Dr. Cara Christ will leave her position on August 27 for another leadership role as chief medical officer for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona.
Christ has led the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) as director since May 2015 after serving as chief medical officer, licensing director and deputy director of public health for the department since 2008. She will be the longest-serving director in the history of the department as of August 13, before her departure from the position.
Christ, an Infectious Disease Epidemiologist, earned a Bachelor and Master of Science in Microbiology from Arizona State University. She earned her Doctor of Medicine from the University of Arizona College of Medicine in Tucson.
“When Cara Christ became a doctor, she did it to help others and save lives. That’s exactly what she’s done,” said Ducey. “She dedicated countless hours to protecting millions of Arizonans from the COVID-19 pandemic — and she’s done it with grace, stability and confidence. She implemented effective statewide testing and internationally-recognized mass vaccination sites, established the national model Arizona SurgeLine, worked hard to increase vaccinations for communities in need, and so much more.”
“Before and during the COVID-19 pandemic, my number one priority has been protecting the health of Arizonans all across our state,” said Dr. Christ. “When the pandemic hit, the entire state came together to contain the spread and protect one another — and I’m grateful to everyone who worked with our team at the Arizona Department of Health Services to protect fellow Arizonans. It has been an honor to lead ADHS and work to keep Arizonans of all ages, backgrounds and unique needs healthy and safe. I’m so proud to have been a part of this administration, and I thank Governor Ducey for entrusting me with responsibility for public health in Arizona and for working with me closely in the state’s response to COVID-19.”