James A. Cooley, a healthcare researcher and analyst in the Medical and Social Services division at the Health and Human Services Commission, died Nov. 11, 2017. In his ten years at HHSC, he worked on several initiatives, including the Medicaid/CHIP super-utilizers program, but his work in improving the quality of health for Texans stretched beyond that. As a chief legislative staff member for the House Committee on Public Health and the Select Committee on State Health Care Expenditures, he worked on furthering health information technology, including helping to establish the Texas Health Services Authority.
In a post on the Texas Health and Human Services web site, Quality and Program Improvement Director Matthew Ferrara described Cooley as a sunny personality, good-natured and with formidable intellect and keen insight. Ferrara said Cooley’s contributions to healthcare and advancing health were numerous.