The new director of the state Department of Health and Senior Services is settling in this week. Jane Drummond replaces Julie Eckstein who has resigned. Drummond used to be the department’s general counsel before becoming Governor Blunt’s top lawyer. She says her familiarity with the department and all of its programs gained through her experience as the agency’s lawyer makes her a good fit for the director’s job. In fact, she says she has missed working with the department. Drummond says she got an early briefing on the Governor’s Medicaid reform proposal, which will be made public soon. She says several department programs, primarily in-home services, that are funded by Medicaid will be affected. Drummond thinks the plan will closely follow recommendations from the legislature’s special Medcaid Reform Joint Committee, which filed 82 recommendations a year ago. The legislature took no action on them this year. But legislative leaders say they have to act in 2007. If they don’t, they’ll face a June 30th, 2008 termination date for the program.
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