The director of President Obama's White House Office of Health Reform has been on the job for more than a month but an executive order makes it official.

Obama named former Clinton administration health official Nancy-Ann DeParle to the White House office on March 2, the same day he nominated Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius (D) to be secretary of Health and Human Services. Technically, though, there was no White House health reform office until Wednesday, when Obama signed an executive order to bring it into being.

Reforming the health care system is a key goal of my Administration. The health care system suffers from serious and pervasive problems; access to health care is constrained by high and rising costs; and the quality of care is not consistent and must be improved, in order to improve the health of our citizens and our economic security.

According to the order, DeParle has a big portfolio and a broad reach. In addition to advising the president on healthare matters, DeParle will be able to direct the head of any federal department or agency to assign a liaison to her office and to provide information or assistance she requires. DeParle also will manage communications between the White House, Congress, states and local governments on health reform.. Within the White House, DeParle is tasked with coordinating the powerful people in the Office of Management and Budget, the Council of Economic Advisers, the National Economic Council and the Domestic Policy Council.

-Jeffrey Young