Health and Human Services has a new structure
State health agencies are undergoing a massive restructuring at the direction of the state legislature. The changes are being implemented to make the system more efficient, effective and responsive.
Client services have been combined into a single division at HHSC. The system is consolidating five agencies into three, with the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services and the Department of Aging and Disability Services no longer operating as separate agencies by 2017. Selected programs from the Department of State Health Services and the Department of Family and Protective Services have also moved to HHSC. The new Medical and Social Services division will combine client services and benefits like Medicaid, SNAP, TANF along with aging and waiver services from DADS; deaf, blind and independent services from DARS; and behavioral health programs from DSHS.
“This is a monumental effort that’s happening behind the scenes. Most people won’t notice a change, other than hopefully it’s easier for them to find what they need,” said Executive Commissioner Charles Smith. “It’s a work in progress, and we’re putting the system together in a way that puts Texans first.”
The effort to get the new structure in place has required massive logistics and change management. Over 4,100 staff and positions and administrative items like grant and contracts have undergone changes. Organizational changes will continue to more than 25,000 staff and positions.
The Texas Health and Human Services website has also undergone a makeover with a cleaner look and more intuitive navigation. This visible change highlights the agencies focus on services for the people of Texas.