TX Work Comp Commissioner Steps Down

Liz Carey

Dallas, TX (WorkersCompensation.com) – Texas Workers’ Compensation Commissioner Ryan Brannan announced Monday that he would be stepping down from his position, effective May 1.

In a press release, the Texas Workers’ Compensation Commission said that Brannan had informed Gov. Greg Abbott of his decision, but no mention was made as to why.

“I’m so proud of what we have been able to achieve during my time here, and I am grateful to both Gov. Abbott and former Gov. Perry for this opportunity,” Brannan said in the release. “It’s time for me to take on new challenges. While I am excited about what lies ahead, I will never forget all the great people I’ve worked with at this division.”

During his almost four years with the DWC (Division of Workers’ Compensation), the department saw a decrease in workers’ compensation costs of 63 percent since 2005. Brannan not only eliminated expensive programs within the department, such as air ambulances, but also the development of a fraud and prosecution unit, the creation of a paperless initiative that included digitizing millions of claims, revisions to the letters sent to injured employees to make them easier to read, and the development of rules to include telemedicine in workers’ compensation, and limiting the use of compound drugs and opioids.

Brannan was most recently a part of WorkersCompensation.com’s Hot Seat covering opioids and medical marijuana.

Jeff Nelson, director of external relations with the Texas Department of Insurance, Division of Workers’ Compensation, said Brannan will leave the department in a great position.

“I think Commission Brannan has accomplished all the goals he set out to accomplish and felt it was time to move on to other things,” Nelson said in an interview with WorkersCompensation.com. “He’s done a great job with the agency and he’s leaving it in great shape.”

Nelson said he was made aware of the decision last week, but that he had no indication of whom Gov. Abbott may name as Brannon’s replacement. Gov. Abbott may appoint an individual to fulfill the existing term, which expires February 1, 2019.