Rebekah E. Gee, MD, MPH, MHSPR
Secretary, Louisiana Department of Health
Gratis Assistant Professor, LSU Schools of Public Health & Medicine
Dr. Rebekah Gee is the Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health, the state’s largest agency with a budget of $14 billion. Her oversight responsibilities include public health and other direct service programs for citizens in need such as behavioral health, developmental disabilities, aging and adult services, emergency preparedness, and the Medicaid program. Under Dr. Gee’s leadership, over 480,000 Louisianans are newly insured under Louisiana’s Medicaid expansion, and for the first time, many are receiving much needed primary and preventive health care. Her Medicaid expansion work also resulted in the launch of a dashboard to measure access to healthcare services, which has become a national model used in other states. She has been a national leader in tackling pharmaceutical pricing, including spearheading an innovative effort to eliminate hepatitis C in Louisiana by negotiating with manufacturers on a subscription model for drug access. Dr. Gee is an obstetrician/gynecologist and brings a caregivers’ perspective to the people she serves. She is also a trained policy expert who has served in numerous state and national policy roles and in 2017 she was elected to the National Academy of Medicine. Prior to her role as Secretary, Dr. Gee served as the director for the Birth Outcomes Initiative where she led the charge to decrease infant mortality and prematurity statewide – an effort that in part led to a 25 percent reduction in infant mortality, an 85 percent drop in elective deliveries before 39 weeks and a 10 percent drop in NICU admissions statewide. She is married and the mother of five energetic children. She lives in New Orleans, where she continues to see patients.