Dr. Ensy Atarod Assumes Dental Director, Medicaid-CHIP, Position

Two weeks ago, TDMR reached out to Texas HHS to find out if a new dental director had been hired for the Medicaid CHIP program to take the place of Dr. Margaret Laccabue.

And, yes, that has occurred.  We were informed that Dr. Ensy Atarod has been in the position of Dental Director, Medicaid CHIP, since June.

Dr. Atarod, prior to joining HHS as dental director, worked for St. David’s Foundation for over 16 years in several clinical dental positions.  According to their LinkedIn page, St. David’s Foundation is one of the largest health foundations in the United States and operates the largest mobile dental program providing charity care in the country.

She was highlighted in the ADA’s New Dentist blog back in 2015 for her work in the ADA’s Diversity in Leadership program.

That being said, Dr. Atarod herself reached out to us with an introductory email, which she has approved we share here.  Also she wanted to provide her email address so that any Medicaid dentist could reach back to her – Ensy.Atarod@hhs.texas.gov.

My name is Dr. Ensy Atarod, and I recently assumed the role of Dental Director for Medicaid and Chip Services in mid-June.  I am writing to introduce myself and provide you with some background information about my experience and goals in this position.

I completed my undergraduate studies in biology at the University of Texas in Austin and subsequently earned my Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from Creighton University School of Dentistry in Omaha, Nebraska. Following this, I pursued a master’s degree in public health from Creighton University School of Public Health.

While I am relatively new to this specific role, I bring with me a wealth of experience in the field of public health. Over the past 16 years, I have served as a full-time public health dentist at the St. David’s Foundation. In this capacity, I dedicated my efforts to providing free dental care to underserved communities in high-needs elementary schools and safety-net clinics across Central Texas.

My unwavering commitment is to advance oral health for all Texans, a goal I believe we all share. I firmly believe that we can achieve significant improvements by working together collaboratively. As I continue to settle into my new role, I would like to schedule a meeting with you and your colleagues to engage in a productive conversation.  It is crucial for me to actively listen to on-the-ground providers such as yourselves and implement changes based on the valuable input of our key stakeholders.

I wanted to express my sincere gratitude for the outstanding work you do in providing essential dental care to children and vulnerable populations.  Your dedication is greatly appreciated.   I look forward to the opportunity to meet with you all in the coming months and will be reaching out to schedule a suitable time for our discussion.

Once again, thank you for your invaluable contributions to oral health, I anticipate an effective collaboration.


Ensy Atarod

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