(Salt Lake City, UT) – The Utah Department of Health (UDOH) today announced Gov. Spencer Cox has appointed Emma Chacon as the Interim State Medicaid Director.
Chacon will be replacing Nathan Checketts who has served as Medicaid director for the past five years. In addition to overseeing the Medicaid program, Checketts also served as the deputy director of the UDOH. Checketts will be joining the Utah Department of Human Services (DHS) as a deputy director.
Chacon brings years of public service experience, having served as Medicaid deputy director and operations director, as well as other positions within the agency since 2005. Prior to her service within Medicaid, Chacon was the director of the Office of Recovery Services for 12 years, in addition to nearly 25 years at DHS.
“As Medicaid director, Nate Checketts worked tirelessly to ensure Utah’s most vulnerable populations remained the focus of the Medicaid program, while still being a good steward of funds provided by the taxpayer,” said Rich Saunders, executive director of the UDOH. “We are fortunate to have Emma Chacon continue to lead such a complex program with her expertise and dedication. Medicaid will continue to be in good hands, especially under the current pandemic circumstances.”
Medicaid is one of the largest programs in state government and contributes significantly to the financing of Utah’s health care system. Medicaid has an operating budget of more than $4.5 billion, and through its many programs provides more than 410,000 Utahns access to health care every year.
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