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Senators’ Diagnosis: State Health Head Janek Fit to Lead

Todd Wiseman, Texas Tribune

The Texas Senate's Nominations committee confirmed Gov. Rick Perry’s appointment of Dr. Kyle Janek as the head of the state’s largest healthcare service provider for low-income and aging Texans – the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.

Janek spoke to Sen. Jane Nelson about the future of funding and providing Medicaid services for Texans, asserting that the state should take a more streamlined approach to providing and funding healthcare.

“What I’d like to do, Senator, is find that business model that’s out there somewhere in a state this big and this diverse,” Janek said. “So, the issue with me is what’s next?” 

Janek suggested the agency should work with Medicaid healthcare providers to address service gaps and save the state millions in spending by adopting a more hands-on approach to Medicaid services – working with healthcare providers on more managed care measures along with the traditional fee for service model. 

Janek said that the agency could possibly contract directly with healthcare providers to save time and money. “If we could envision such a thing, will that save the state money?” Janek asked. 

Janek still has to be confirmed by a full Senate vote. 

Andrew Weber is a general assignment reporter for KUT, focusing on criminal justice, policing, courts and homelessness in Austin and Travis County. Got a tip? You can email him at Follow him on Twitter @England_Weber.
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