The head of the much-beleaguered Cabinet for Health and Family Services has resigned. One of the first appointments of Gov. Steve Beshear, Secretary Janie Miller will step down Feb. 29 after four years in office.
Under her leadership, Miller has been overseeing the transition to managed care of 560,000 Medicaid recipients. The system has prompted many complaints about late payments. Under Miller's watch, the cabinet lost several legal battles with the state's largest newspapers over records of child-abuse deaths and near deaths.
In December, Sen. Julie Denton, R-Louisville, asked Miller to step down, saying the cabinet "treats everyone as an adversary." Beshear said in a press release that Miller has done "extraordinary work in an especially difficult time. "Her efforts to provide health insurance for children, to implement wellness strategies, and move more than half a million Kentuckians to a managed care health system in less than a year were enormous tasks," he said. "Her work has paved the way for generations of healthier Kentuckians."
In addition to the move to managed care, under Miller's leadership the cabinet has overseen improvement at Oakwood in Somerset and replaced infrastructure at aging state facilities, including Eastern State Hospital. And it has enrolled more than 60,000 children in the Kentucky Children's Health Insurance Program and Medicaid, Beshear said.
"I have been blessed with a long and fulfilling career in public service," Miller said in a statement. "During these last four years during one of the country's worst economic recessions, we have continued to move forward by looking to the future, with creativity and focus on alignment, integration and partnership across many sectors to improve the lives of vulnerable populations. I have been privileged to serve with CHFS employees who are some of the most dedicated, committed individuals in state government. I am excited about the future." (Read more)