BOSTON – Governor Charlie Baker today announced two key healthcare appointments who will be tasked with ensuring that Massachusetts’ Medicaid population are receiving proper coverage and that healthcare consumers have the tools necessary and readily available to seek out insurance on the private market and Connector website.
Governor Baker announced the position of Director of MassHealth will be elevated to Assistant Secretary for MassHealth under Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders and appointed Daniel Tsai to that post. This change in designation will allow for enhanced coordination between MassHealth and other state agencies and empower policy, payment and service reforms needed to benefit members and the Commonwealth.
Louis Gutierrez, a longtime information technology and planning specialist in the private sector and state government, was announced as the Executive Director for the Massachusetts Health Connector. Mr. Gutierrez will be officially appointed to the post by Administration and Finance Secretary Kristen Lepore under her office’s statutory authority as Chair of the Health Connector Board of Directors.
“Massachusetts has long been a leader in healthcare reform, but we must always look for ways to improve on how we serve those in need and ensure our residents have the information needed to find affordable coverage,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “I am confident in Daniel’s ability to fill this new and expanded role as Assistant Secretary to facilitate further cooperation among agencies who assist and care for our Medicaid population, and Louis’ talent will be a welcome voice and mind for those families and individuals searching for quality and affordable healthcare.”
"I believe deeply in the mission of MassHealth and the important services it provides for our most vulnerable populations," said Daniel Tsai. "I am humbled and honored to have this opportunity to work with Governor Baker and Secretary Sudders to enhance the voice of these individuals in state government."
“Rapidly evolving technology presents us every day with new opportunities and unique challenges to improve operations and services to our consumers -- in this case, healthcare for the people of Massachusetts,” said Louis Gutierrez. “I am looking forward to serving with Governor Baker as we work to streamline access to healthcare for those needing coverage for themselves and their families.”
MassHealth, the state’s Medicaid program, provides access to critical, affordable and quality health care to the Commonwealth’s most vulnerable populations in the communities where they live. MassHealth serves 1.7 million low-and moderate-income individuals and individuals with disabilities, or approximately one in four Massachusetts residents. Through grants and demonstrations, MassHealth seeks to enhance the ability of hospitals and community health centers to more efficiently and effectively deliver integrated health care services to the MassHealth members they serve.
The Health Connector is Massachusetts’ own health insurance marketplace for individuals, families and small businesses to shop for health and dental coverage, helping Massachusetts to achieve the highest rate of health insurance coverage in the nation. Problems developing with the site last year cost hundreds of millions of dollars in recent technology fixes and temporary Medicaid coverage plans for over 300,000 residents, contributing to Massachusetts’ recently announced, $765 million budget deficit.
About Daniel Tsai:
Daniel Tsai currently serves as a Partner in McKinsey & Company’s Healthcare Systems and Services practice, co-leading the firm’s Medicaid service line. He has significant experience designing and implementing innovative, state-wide payment systems for Medicaid, Medicare and Commercial populations, and has worked closely with multiple Medicaid programs, private payers, and Fortune 50 health services companies. Tsai regularly leads workshops and conference sessions on health care payment and care delivery strategies and holds an A.B. in Applied Mathematics and Economics from Harvard.
About Louis Gutierrez:
Louis Gutierrez has spent the last seven years as a principal in the Massachusetts-based IT consulting firm Exeter Group. Until this appointment, he served on the boards of directors of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care and the New England Health Exchange Network. He is returning after previous roles in Massachusetts state government and information technology, including Chief Information Officer for the Commonwealth in the Romney, Weld and Celluci administrations where he was also an Assistant Secretary for Administration and Finance. Gutierrez also served as a Senior Vice President and Chief Information and Technology Officer (CIO/CTO) at Harvard Pilgrim Health Care during its 1999-2002 corporate turnaround, and was a 2002 recipient of Computerworld’s Premier 100 award for distinguished CIOs.