The California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) funds healthcare services for more than 15.4 million Medi-Cal beneficiaries. About one-third of Californians receive health care services financed or organized by DHCS, making the Department the largest health care purchaser in California. In this episode of Legal Prescriptions, Heather Claus talks with John Puente, who served as Deputy Director and Chief Counsel to DHCS before joining Nossaman in May 2023. While in this role, John provided strategic legal counsel and advice to the organization and oversaw the Office of Legal Services and Office of Regulations. Heather and John discuss what it was like to work at this government agency during the COVID-19 pandemic and what to expect from DHCS going forward.