DES MOINES, Iowa -- One state department leader will now oversee two separate agencies after Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds asked Department of Human Services Director Jerry Foxhoven to resign Monday.
Gerd Clabaugh, currently the director of the Department of Public Health, will also serve as interim DHS according to a news release from the governor. The statement read:
“Gerd has done an incredible job at the Department of Public Health and is well positioned to lead the Department of Human Services. He will play a very important role in implementing my vision for an integrated, compassionate, and coordinated health care system.”
Foxhoven served almost exactly two years in the position and was tasked with improving the state's switch to turn over management of Medicaid delivery services to private companies. That switch, which began under former Governor Terry Branstad with a pledge to save the state hundreds of millions of dollars, has faced numerous complaints of reduced services to the low income, elderly and disabled Iowans Medicaid serves, as well as criticism from providers who say it takes too long to get paid and that they don't always get reimbursed for their services.
Foxhoven release a brief statement regarding his resignation:
“At the Request of the Governor, I submitted my resignation. It was an honor to serve Iowans at the Department of Human Services during an important time of transition. I wish the many hard-working employees at the Department the very best and know that they will continue to serve the people of Iowa well.”
The governor provided no reason for dismissing Foxhoven and didn't mention the pending announcement to reporters during an event in Des Moines Monday morning, three hours before her office sent out the news release regarding the change.
Reynolds left the state to attend a meeting North Carolina scheduled for Tuesday.
Her staff also did not provide a reason for Foxhoven's departure.