Torres confirmed as NM health secretary

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SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Senate has confirmed Dr. Catherine Torres as the state's health secretary.

The 48-year-old Las Cruces pediatrician will be in charge of the department that runs public health clinics across the state, manages programs for the developmentally disabled and operates several state health facilities, including a mental hospital and long-term care nursing homes.

The health department also administers New Mexico's medical marijuana program.

Torres earned her undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of New Mexico. Most recently, she worked at Rio Grande Medical Group in Las Cruces.

Torres also served on the U.S. Mexico Border Health Commission until 2006 and was chairwoman of the New Mexico Border Health Council Advisory Committee for two years.