Former federal Medicaid chief joins COCHS to strengthen systems of care for people involved in the justice system
April 20, 2020

Community Oriented Correctional Health Services (COCHS) announced today that it has appointed Vikki Wachino as Chief Executive Officer.  Vikki joins Dr. Homer Venters, who become COCHS president in January. COCHS has worked since its creation in 2005 to build bridges between correctional and community providers and advance the health and well-being of people involved in the justice system.

“COCHS has worked for more than a decade to build a stronger health care system for people who are involved with the justice system,” said Wachino.  “Together, we will build bridges across the health and justice systems to better meet the needs of people and communities and advance health, equity, public safety, and justice across the country.”

“Vikki joins the COCHS leadership team at a critical time, as COVID-19 is taking a heavy toll on people involved in the justice system, compromising public health approaches to mitigating the epidemic,” Venters, who previously served as Chief Medical Officer for the New York City jail system, said.

Wachino is the former Deputy Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, where she oversaw all policy and operations for the Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Programs, which serve more than 70 million Americans.  She has worked inside and outside of government for more than 25 years to advance stronger health care policy for low income people in the United States, including roles at the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, the Kaiser Family Foundation, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and NORC at the University of Chicago.  She is also a board member of Benefits Data Trust.

“Vikki’s leadership at the highest levels of government, her deep expertise in health policy and commitment to advancing polices to improve the health of low-income people positions COCHS to tackle some of most serious issues facing communities and all levels of government,” said COCHS founder and board chair Steve Rosenberg.

COCHS also announced that longtime employee Dan Mistak is returning to COCHS as the Director of Health Care Initiatives for Justice-Involved Populations after a two-year leave with the Legal Aid Society of Hawai‘i where he established medical legal partnerships in federally qualified health centers and worked to strengthen the interface between the behavioral health safety net and the criminal justice system.  Vikki and Dan join Chief Operating Officer Mike Dubose, whose has spent decades building community-oriented approaches to correctional health care, and Chief Information Officer Ben Butler,  who leads COCHS’ work creating connectivity and information exchange between health and correctional systems.

For more information on COCHS see  Information on COCHS COVID-19 response, including proposed mitigations and an interactive map of state Department of Corrections data are available at and