LINCOLN — Matthew Van Patton, the head of a health care technology startup, was announced Friday as Nebraska’s new state Medicaid director.

Gov. Pete Ricketts said Van Patton, of Greer, South Carolina, will bring broad experience in health care and public policy to the job.

“His background will serve the agency and our customers well as he administers the state of Nebraska’s largest program,” the governor said.

Van Patton is currently the president and chief executive officer of Cadre Medical Technologies, a health care technology company.

His 18-year career includes working as the chief of staff for U.S. Rep. Trey Gowdy, a Republican from South Carolina’s 4th District. He also held various administrative positions within the Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System.

Van Patton has a doctoral degree in health administration from the Medical University of South Carolina, a master’s degree in strategic communications and leadership from Seton Hall University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Carolina Upstate. He is a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.

He will fill a spot as director of the Division of Medicaid and Long-Term Care within the Department of Health and Human Services that has been vacant for nearly 10 months.

In that position, he will administer one of the state’s costliest programs and oversee its revamp, known as Heritage Health, which has drawn criticism from some providers and patients.

Calder Lynch, the previous division director, left for a job with the federal government.

Van Patton is slated to start March 1. His salary will be $155,000.

Martha Stoddard keeps legislators honest from The World-Herald's Lincoln bureau, where she covers news from the State Capitol. Follow her on Twitter @StoddardOWH. Phone: 402-473-9583.

Commenting is limited to Omaha World-Herald subscribers. To sign up, click here.

If you're already a subscriber and need to activate your access or log in, click here.

Load comments

You must be a full digital subscriber to read this article You must be a digital subscriber to view this article.