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Media Release

FRIDAY, JULY 7, 2006 615.532.8560 (OFFICE)
615.202.0701 (CELL)


NASHVILLE - Governor Phil Bredesen today announced that TennCare director JD Hickey will be leaving state government for a position in the private sector. Bredesen has named TennCare CFO Darin Gordon to be the new director of the bureau.

"I want to thank JD Hickey for his outstanding service to our state," said Governor Phil Bredesen."Under his leadership, TennCare has turned a corner to become a financially stable program focusing on making real advances in patient care. "Governor Bredesen appointed Hickey director of the TennCare Bureau in July of 2004. During his two year tenure, Hickey restored fiscal stability to the program and placed TennCare on track to achieve its third consecutive balanced budget. Hickey and the management team he assembled also returned the managed care network to financial risk, reduced pharmacy expenditures by 60 percent, and implemented performance and quality requirements on managed care contractors.

Darin Gordon will become the 11th director of TennCare. He was promoted to CFO in July of 2004 as a part of the management restructuring instituted by Hickey. For the last four years, he has served in a number of management roles at TennCare.

Gordon joined TennCare in October 2002 and assumed responsibility for the management and oversight of TennCare's nine managed care organizations and two behavioral health organizations. His duties included negotiating contracts with MCOs, monitoring contract compliance, developing cost and utilization analysis models and assisting in financial and contractual negotiations with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). He also created a managed care analytics unit to better analyze cost and utilization information provided by TennCare managed care organizations.

Prior to TennCare, Gordon served for two years as the budget director for health services in the Office of Health Services, which formerly existed under the Department of Finance and Administration. He previously spent three years in the division of budget under Finance and Administration. Gordon began his tenure with the state in 1995, serving for two years as an assistant research analyst with the Senate Finance, Ways & Means Committee.

"I am very pleased that Darin Gordon has agreed to lead the TennCare Bureau," said Bredesen. He has been a critical part of the new management team at TennCare. I am confident that he will maintain the fiscal discipline of this important program which will allow for continued progress in patient care.

Dr. Wendy Long, chief medical officer for the TennCare Bureau will remain an integral member of Gordon's TennCare Bureau leadership team. Dr. Long joined TennCare in September 2004 also as a part of the management restructuring instituted by Hickey.

Since joining TennCare, Dr. Long has helped create enhanced quality of care requirements in managed care organization contracts and spearheaded implementation of key disease management initiatives. Dr. Long is a veteran public health physician and former TennCare medical director. Prior to joining the Bureau in 2004, Dr. Long served as the Assistant Commissioner for the Bureau of Health Services in the state's Department of Health where she oversaw the regional and county public health system. She joined the Department of Health in 1998 and also served as acting director of the TennCare Bureau in 1998.

Hickey will become chief executive officer of Qualifacts, a software development company co-founded by Bredesen in 2000. Qualifacts has no contracts with the state of Tennessee and does not pursue business with the State of Tennessee.

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