Tribpedia: Health And Human Services Commission

With 4 Candidates in Health Care, Senate Race Stirs Unique Debate

Top row, left to right: Jon Cobb, Brent Mayes, Dawn Buckingham. 
Bottom row, left to right: Reed Williams, Susan King,  Ryan Downton.
Top row, left to right: Jon Cobb, Brent Mayes, Dawn Buckingham. Bottom row, left to right: Reed Williams, Susan King, Ryan Downton.

In a Republican primary cycle dominated by talk of illegal immigration and national security, four of six candidates for an open state Senate seat have ties to the health care industry. The candidates are talking at length about issues not coming up in other races, like boosting Medicaid payments and improving health care access.

A group gathered at Wooldridge Park in Austin on Nov. 22, 2015, to protest Gov. Greg Abbott's decision not to accept refugees from Syria.
A group gathered at Wooldridge Park in Austin on Nov. 22, 2015, to protest Gov. Greg Abbott's decision not to accept refugees from Syria.

Abbott Holding the Line on Syrian Refugees

After unsuccessfully demanding that private resettlement groups stop helping Syrian refugees move to Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott's administration is now insisting that the federal government turn over medical, security screening and other background information on them. 

A child walks in a United Nations refugee camp in Turkey where thousands of Syrian refugees reside.
A child walks in a United Nations refugee camp in Turkey where thousands of Syrian refugees reside.

Refugee Nonprofits: Texas Response is What ISIS Would Want

A day after about half of the country’s governors promised to block Syrian refugees from resettling in their states, religious and nonprofit leaders warned that those actions could have a dramatic impact on refugee resettlement. Gov. Greg Abbott announced on Monday that Texas would not allow Syrian refugees to be resettled here.

Jasmine Johnson, with 10-month-old daughter Rain, lost her Medicaid coverage and was told she could not re-enroll, even though federal law allows former foster children like Johnson to stay in the health insurance program until they turn 26.
Jasmine Johnson, with 10-month-old daughter Rain, lost her Medicaid coverage and was told she could not re-enroll, even though federal law allows former foster children like Johnson to stay in the health insurance program until they turn 26.

Is Texas Denying Health Coverage to Foster Youth?

Advocates say Texas officials are routinely denying health care coverage to former foster children after they turn 21, even though federal law says they should continue to be covered by Medicaid until they turn 26.

Video: Transforming Texas Hospitals

Here's full video of our conversation Tuesday on "Transforming Texas Hospitals," a discussion of how the new economics of health care, the politics of reform, the technology revolution and other modern-world realities are transforming Texas hospitals. The event was held at the Texas Medical Center's Innovation Institute in Houston. Our panelists included John Warner, vice president and CEO of UT Southwestern University Hospitals; Israel Rocha, CEO of Doctors Hospital at Renaissance; Debbie Sukin, regional senior vice president of Houston Methodist and CEO of Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital and George Masi, president and CEO for the Harris Health System.

Patients wait to be seen at the People's Community Clinic in Austin, which provides state-subsidized women's health services to low-income women, in July 2014.
Patients wait to be seen at the People's Community Clinic in Austin, which provides state-subsidized women's health services to low-income women, in July 2014.

2 State Women's Health Programs to Consolidate in July

Following a directive from the Legislature, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission announced Wednesday that it would combine two of the state's main women’s health programs to create the “Healthy Texas Women” program on July 1.

Jack Stick, former chief counsel of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, sits inside a Travis County courtroom during his 2015 trial for a 2012 DWI arrest.
Jack Stick, former chief counsel of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, sits inside a Travis County courtroom during his 2015 trial for a 2012 DWI arrest.

Trial Begins for Former State Official Accused of DWI

More than three years after his original arrest, Jack Stick, a former state representative and a former inspector general for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, went on trial Friday for a drunk driving charge he has fiercely contested in the court system.

Greg Abbott, then the state's attorney general, discusses Texas' lawsuit against federal health care reform on Jan. 31, 2011.
Greg Abbott, then the state's attorney general, discusses Texas' lawsuit against federal health care reform on Jan. 31, 2011.

Abbott Courting Feds for Health Care Money, Emails Show

A newspaper editorial prompted Gov. Greg Abbott to have aides research the finances of a Houston health insurance plan to see if some hospitals caring for poor and uninsured Texans are "rolling in dough," emails obtained by The Texas Tribune show.