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Health secretary looks to improve access to care in New Mexico | Legislature | New Mexico Legislative Session

Newly confirmed New Mexico Health Secretary Patrick Allen doesn’t dodge questions about leaving his post as Oregon’s top health official in early January, just before a new governor took office.

He announced his resignation in November, days after Democratic Gov. Tina Kotek was elected. He didn’t have much of a choice.

It was step down or be tossed out for 60-year-old Allen, who had spent five years as director of the Oregon Health Authority — Kotek had said on the campaign trail she would fire him amid criticism of his handling of problems with the state’s behavioral health system.

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