Oklahoma City, OK (STL.News) The Oklahoma Senate Health and Human Services Committee voted to confirm Dr. Lance Frye as commissioner of the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH). Frye was appointed interim commissioner by Governor Kevin Stitt on May 22, 2020.
“I want to thank the state of Oklahoma for trusting me to serve in this role during such a difficult time for our state,” said Frye. “As we continue in our fight against COVID-19 and progress into our new normal, my number one priority will remain to protect the lives and health of Oklahomans.”
Prior to his role as Commissioner of Health, Frye served as interim department chair, residency program director and professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences. He received his Doctorate in Medicine from Loma Linda University, School of Medicine in 1993.
After practicing medicine for several years, Frye’s desire to serve his country led him to join the Air Force, where he entered active duty as a flight surgeon at Nellis AFB. He was later deployed in Operations ENDURING FREEDOM and IRAQI Freedom, providing life-saving support in the highest-threat environment of Afghanistan in 2008. He later transitioned to the Oklahoma National Guard, where he served as state air surgeon.
“It has been an honor to work with Dr. Frye throughout our state’s pandemic response,” said Governor Kevin Stitt. “His extensive medical and military experience is a reflection of his longstanding commitment to serving others in times of crisis and uncertainty. He was the right man for the job at the height of the pandemic, and I’m confident his leadership will continue to benefit the health and lives of Oklahomans.”
During Frye’s tenure at OSDH, the agency has taken significant steps to increase COVID-19 testing capacity, provided essential personal protective equipment to healthcare providers and led the state’s largest vaccination effort in history, which has consistently ranked Oklahoma in the top 10 states nationally.