SCDHHS Welcomes Dr. Kevin Wessinger as Agency’s Medical Director
COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (SCDHHS) today announced it hired Dr. Kevin Wessinger as the agency’s new medical director. Dr. Wessinger, a Medical University of South Carolina graduate, practiced as a pediatrician for 33 years at Sandhills Pediatrics in the Midlands region of the state and served as the president of Sandhills Pediatrics and the South Carolina Pediatric Alliance until November 2022. Dr. Wessinger will join SCDHHS in January 2023.
A respected leader among South Carolina’s medical community, Dr. Wessinger is a member of SCDHHS’ Quality Through Innovation in Pediatrics (QTIP) Advisory Committee, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control’s Pediatric Advisory Committee and is a clinical associate professor of pediatrics at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine.
“I couldn’t be more pleased to welcome Dr. Wessinger, one of South Carolina’s preeminent experts on pediatric medicine, to the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services,” said SCDHHS Director Robby Kerr. “Our agency is the largest payor of health care services for children in South Carolina. Dr. Wessinger’s experience, not only as a physician, but as a physician who has spent 33 years treating Healthy Connections Medicaid members, and commitment to seeking innovation in improving health outcomes for our state’s children will be a tremendous asset with benefits that far exceed the state’s Medicaid members.”
Throughout his 33-year career as a practicing pediatrician, at least one-third of Dr. Wessinger’s patients have been covered by the state’s Healthy Connections Medicaid program. He has served as a member of SCDHHS’ QTIP Advisory Committee since its inception in 2016. His leadership in QTIP has included emphases on screening new mothers for postpartum depression, incorporating mental health screenings into primary care physician visits and a stronger alignment between health care quality measures and Medicaid financial incentives.
In addition to his medical degree from the Medical University of South Carolina, Dr. Wessinger holds a Bachelor of Science degree in microbiology from Clemson University, where he graduated magna cum laude. He completed his medical internship and residency at the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Children’s of Alabama. He is a native of Clinton, South Carolina.
Approximately 60% of South Carolina’s children receive their health care coverage through SCDHHS’ Healthy Connections Medicaid program. Similarly, approximately 60% of the nearly 1.3 million South Carolinians who receive full-benefit health care coverage through Healthy Connections Medicaid are children.
About the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services
The South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services provides health care benefits to nearly 1.3 million South Carolinians. Its mission is to be boldly innovative in improving the health and quality of life for South Carolinians.