Tribpedia: Health And Human Services Commission

Tribpedia

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission, with its $16 billion annual budget and 9,300 employees, administers and determines eligibility for programs for underprivileged Texans, including Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).

The commission oversees the four other state health agencies, including the Department of Aging and Disability Services, the Department ...

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Texas Task Force on Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response Director Dr. Brett Giroir during a press conference at the Texas State Capitol on October 17th, 2014 joined by Gov. Perry, Dr. Kyle Janek, Col. Steve McCraw and Chief Nim Kidd
Texas Task Force on Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response Director Dr. Brett Giroir during a press conference at the Texas State Capitol on October 17th, 2014 joined by Gov. Perry, Dr. Kyle Janek, Col. Steve McCraw and Chief Nim Kidd

Ebola Task Force's Report Includes Call for New Facility

In a new report, the Texas Task Force on Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response called for the establishment of a treatment facility specifically for children, among other recommendations.

Sen. Charles Schwertner R-Georgetown, speaks about health care in Texas at a February Tribune event.
Sen. Charles Schwertner R-Georgetown, speaks about health care in Texas at a February Tribune event.

HHS Committee Releases Interim Recommendations

The Senate Committee on Health and Human Services released a series of recommendations late Monday for the 2015 legislative session. Among those recommendations: a push to renew the "transformational" Medicaid waiver that, among other things, helps reimburse hospitals for the emergency care they provide to the uninsured.

Jack Stick, the top lawyer for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.
Jack Stick, the top lawyer for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.

In Stick's DWI Case, Perry Critics See Double Standard

The DWI case of Republican Jack Stick, the top lawyer for the state’s sprawling health care agency, is scheduled for a pretrial hearing next week after two years of delay. But it has received little attention from politicians or the media, spurring accusations of inconsistency in Gov. Rick Perry's administration. 

 

State Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, leaving the Senate chamber with colleagues Sen. Carlos Uresti, D-San Antonio, and Sen. John Whitmire, D-Houston, after a press conference on May 30, 2011.
State Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, leaving the Senate chamber with colleagues Sen. Carlos Uresti, D-San Antonio, and Sen. John Whitmire, D-Houston, after a press conference on May 30, 2011.

Abortion Opponents: Davis Disclosure Changes Nothing

Texas’ leading anti-abortion groups, reacting to the news that state Sen. Wendy Davis had two abortions years ago for medical reasons, reiterated their opposition to the termination of pregnancies, including ones where an unborn child is diagnosed with severe disabilities.

 

 

 

 

Patients are shown checking out in 2010 at the People's Community Clinic in Austin, a safety-net clinic that serves Medicaid recipients and the underinsured.
Patients are shown checking out in 2010 at the People's Community Clinic in Austin, a safety-net clinic that serves Medicaid recipients and the underinsured.

Rule Changes Address Contraceptive Devices

Texas women who receive state-financed health services may be able to more easily access contraceptive products like intrauterine devices and hormonal implants beginning Friday, when rule changes to the state’s Medicaid program and the Texas Women’s Health Program go into effect.

Yesenia Alvarado holds her daughter, Medicaid patient Melanie Almaraz, 2, while waiting to see Dr. Alberto Vasquez for the treatment of a fever at the Su Clinica Familiar in Harlingen on Jul. 9, 2013.
Yesenia Alvarado holds her daughter, Medicaid patient Melanie Almaraz, 2, while waiting to see Dr. Alberto Vasquez for the treatment of a fever at the Su Clinica Familiar in Harlingen on Jul. 9, 2013.

Texas Sees Rise in Medicaid Signups

More than 80,000 additional Texans have enrolled in Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program since the rollout of the Affordable Care Act last fall, despite Republican state leaders’ decision not to expand eligibility to poor adults. 

 

Dr. Rose Okoro, a nurse practitioner, who owns Daystar Family Clinic in Katy, is shown on May 12. 2014. She says she has struggled to treat a greater number of Medicaid patients because of state regulations.
Dr. Rose Okoro, a nurse practitioner, who owns Daystar Family Clinic in Katy, is shown on May 12. 2014. She says she has struggled to treat a greater number of Medicaid patients because of state regulations.

Nurse Practitioners Look to Ease Supervision Rules

Nurse practitioners say state regulations, which link them to supervising physicians, limit their ability to treat patients in a state with a looming shortage of primary care physicians. As they seek more freedom in the state Medicaid program, physicians say the the current “team-based” model has proved to be effective.

Helen Hawkins, a certified pediatric nurse practitioner, treats 13-month-old Kevin Gorostieta at Carousel Pediatrics in Austin on Nov. 8, 2012.
Helen Hawkins, a certified pediatric nurse practitioner, treats 13-month-old Kevin Gorostieta at Carousel Pediatrics in Austin on Nov. 8, 2012.

Medicaid Fraud Settlement Worries Health Providers

For health providers who treat the state’s poorest patients, a high-profile settlement between the Texas health commission's office of inspector general and Carousel Pediatrics has raised questions about how the inspector general’s office distinguishes fraudulent intent from human error.