Summit on health care costs in america

Featured Speakers

Jessica Banthin, Ph.D., is the deputy assistant director of the Health, Retirement, and Long-Term Analysis Division at the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). She came to CBO in June 2011, arriving as a senior advisor on health care analyses. She was promoted two years later to the position of deputy assistant director. During her time at CBO, she has written and managed several reports and cost estimates related to the Affordable Care Act. She directs the development and application of the agency’s Health Insurance Simulation model as well as other models used to support estimates of how changes in policy would affect health insurance coverage and the federal budget. Before joining CBO, Dr. Banthin worked for many years at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), where she directed the Division of Modeling and Simulation. At AHRQ, she helped design and analyze the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, which yields nationally representative data on health care expenditures, premiums, and more. Her research has spanned a range of health care issues, including trends in out-of-pocket spending, employment-based coverage, eligibility for and enrollment in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, the “crowding out” of private insurance by public programs, premiums in the individual market, prescription drug expenditures, and the impact of policy reforms on costs overall, access to care, and families’ out-of-pocket expenses. Dr. Banthin received her doctorate in economics from the University of Maryland and her bachelor’s degree from Harvard University.


Stacy Becker, M.S., MPP, is vice president of programs at Rethink Health. In this capacity, she oversees the majority of ReThink Health’s place-based and research and development work. Previously, Stacy was director of sustainable financing for ReThink Health. She also has served as budget director for the City and County of San Francisco (CA) and for the City of Saint Paul (MN), as well as public works director for the City of Saint Paul. As a policy consultant for 18 years, she provided guidance on affordable housing, pay-for-success pilots, long-term care financing, and nonprofit strategic management. She has a master’s degree in public policy (MPP) from Harvard University, and an MS in city design and social science from the London School of Economics, which she attended as a Bush Leadership Fellow. Stacy has indulged her love for learning by taking up tennis and playing the harp. 


Rachel Block is a program officer with the Milbank Memorial Fund, focusing on a variety of state health policy issues.  In this capacity, and as an independent consultant, she has worked with states and non-profit organizations to address key issues in health care transformation, including but not limited to innovations in delivery system and payment models; behavioral health integration; population health improvement; health care cost measurement; health information technology; and new multi-stakeholder governance models. Ms. Block has served in numerous executive roles in the public and private sectors.  She served as deputy commissioner for Health Information Technology Transformation in the NYS Department of Health (2009-2013), and as founding executive director of the New York eHealth Collaborative (2007-2009).  She worked for 8 years at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (previously Health Care Financing Administration), where she held several senior management positions directing policy development and operations of Medicaid, State Children's Health Insurance, and Federal Survey and Certification Programs. She supported the development of a comprehensive health reform plan and legislation in Vermont from 1992-94; and worked for the New York State Legislature, where she concentrated on Medicaid, coverage for the uninsured, public health, and professional licensing issues from 1979-1992. 


Mollyann Brodie, Ph.D., is vice president for executive operations and executive director for public opinion and survey research at the Kaiser Family Foundation. She is responsible for all aspects of the Kaiser Family Foundation’s public opinion survey efforts, including the monthly Kaiser Health Tracking poll, the Foundation’s work on Americans’ attitudes toward global health policy, and the ongoing survey partnerships with media organizations including The Washington Post, The New York Times, and NPR.  Dr. Brodie’s efforts focus on understanding public opinion and knowledge on health care policy issues, and the role of opinion in health policy debates.  Her research has been published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of Health Politics, Policy, and Law and Health Affairs.  Dr. Brodie is co-editor of the book American Public Opinion and Health Care (CQ Press, 2011). She is also responsible for all executive operations of the Foundation, including directing the President’s Office and supporting the activities of the Foundation’s Board of Trustees and Board Committees. Dr. Brodie is a former president of the American Association of Public Opinion Research (AAPOR).  She previously served on AAPOR’s Executive Council and as president of its Pacific Chapter, PAPOR.  She received a master’s degree in Health Policy and Management and a doctorate degree in health policy from Harvard University.


Robin Gelburd, J.D., is the founding president of FAIR Health. Under her direction, FAIR Health has fulfilled its mandate to provide an independent, national database of healthcare claims; a free website to educate consumers about healthcare insurance and costs; and data for academic and policy research. She is a recipient of the 2016 Dig|Benefits Technology Innovator Award, bestowed by Employee Benefit News. She also has published numerous articles on topics such as data analytics in The Self-Insurer, healthcare cost transparency and clarity in Managed Healthcare Executive, the New York State consumer protection law in Employee Benefit Adviser and consumer preferences on the Institute for HealthCare Consumerism website, among many others. Prior to being recruited as President of FAIR Health, Ms. Gelburd served for eight years as general counsel of a medical research foundation comprising approximately 30 premier academic medical centers, hospitals and research institutions in New York State. During her tenure at this consortium, she also was appointed chairperson of New Yorkers for the Advancement of Medical Research, a statewide coalition of over 40 organizations that she helped found in 2003 and whose mission was the promotion of state funding and support for stem cell research and regenerative medicine. Previously, Ms. Gelburd was a health law partner at the New York City law firm Kalkines, Arky, Zall & Bernstein (now Manatt, Phelps & Phillips). Earlier, Ms. Gelburd worked as a litigation and corporate associate at the international law firm Morrison & Foerster. She began her legal career as a federal appellate law clerk to the Honorable Francis D. Murnaghan, Jr. from the Court of Appeals, 4th Circuit. She received her bachelor’s degree with honors from the State University of New York at Binghamton and a law degree from Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University.


James Gelfand, J.D., is senior vice president of health policy at the ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC). He works with ERIC members to develop and advance public policies to support their ability to design and administer health plans, including legislative and regulatory advocacy at the federal, state, and local levels. Mr. Gelfand has broad experience across the health care policy spectrum, including insurance, coverage, quality, reimbursement, innovation, benefits, government programs, and many other related issues. He has led a number of successful legislative initiatives as director of Federal Affairs at the March of Dimes Foundation. Prior to this, he served as associate project director for Luntz Global Partners, where he helped spearhead the firm’s political practice during the 2014 election. He also worked for four years on Capitol Hill, serving as counsel to Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME) on the U.S. Senate Small Business Committee, and to Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) on the U.S. Senate Homeland Security Committee, covering health care and other Senate Finance Committee issues. Mr. Gelfand served four years as a lobbyist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, where he directed the trade association’s health policy team throughout the health reform process. Prior to that, he was a lobbyist for ERIC, where he assisted in building a number of successful initiatives that are ongoing today. Mr. Gelfand earned his law degree at George Washington University Law School, and his undergraduate degrees in Political Science and Legal Studies at Northwestern University.


Douglas Holtz-Eakin, Ph.D., is the president of the American Action Forum and has a distinguished record as an academic, policy adviser, and strategist. Since 2001, he has served in a variety of important policy positions. In 2001and 2002 he was chief economist of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers. He was the sixth director of the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office from 2003 to 2005. During 2007 and 2008 he was director of Domestic and Economic Policy for the John McCain presidential campaign. Dr. Holtz-Eakin built an international reputation as a scholar doing research in areas of applied economic policy, econometric methods, and entrepreneurship. He began his career at Columbia University in 1985 and moved to Syracuse University from 1990 to 2001. At Syracuse, he became Trustee Professor of Economics at the Maxwell School, chairman of the Department of Economics and associate director of the Center for Policy Research.


Tom Miller, J.D., is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), where he studies health policy, with particular emphasis on regulatory barriers to choice and competition, market-based alternatives to the policies of the Affordable Care Act, health care litigation, and the political economy of health care reform. He is the coauthor of “Why ObamaCare Is Wrong for America” (HarperCollins, 2011) and author of “When ObamaCare Fails: The Playbook for Market-Based Reform” (AEI, 2012). Mr. Miller was a member of the National Advisory Council for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality from 2007 to 2009. He was a senior health policy adviser for the John McCain presidential campaign in 2008. Before joining AEI in 2006, Mr. Miller served for three years as senior health economist for the Joint Economic Committee of the US Congress. He has also been director of health policy studies at the Cato Institute and director of economic policy studies at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. He is a member of the State Bar of Georgia. Before coming to Washington, he was a trial attorney, a journalist, and a radio broadcaster (including several seasons as play-by-play voice of the Davidson College Wildcats basketball team). Mr. Miller’s writing has appeared in many publications such as Health Affairs, The Wall Street Journal, American Journal of Medicine, and other publications. Mr. Miller has testified before various congressional committees on issues including healthcare consolidation and competition, the uninsured, health care costs, pre-existing health conditions and high-risk pools, cost-sharing reduction subsidy funding, Medicare cost-sharing reform, Medicare prescription drug benefits, medical savings accounts, health insurance tax credits, genetic information, social security, federal reinsurance of catastrophic risks, and terrorism insurance. Mr. Miller holds a bachelor's degree cum laude in political science from New York University and a law degree from Duke University.


Farzad Mostashari, M.D., is the chief executive officer of Aledade, a start-up he co-founded aimed at helping primary care doctors transform their practices and form accountable care organizations (ACOs). Prior to Aledade, he was a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington DC, where he focused on payment reform and delivery system transformation. He served from 2011-2013 as the national coordinator for Health Information Technology where he coordinated US efforts to build a health information technology infrastructure for healthcare reform and consumer empowerment. During his tenure at the Office of the National Coordinator, including his two years as principal deputy, he led the implementation of the Health IT for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act. He also collaborated with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on the design and implementation of the “Meaningful Use” Incentive Program, in addition to programs for health information exchange, health IT workforce, research, and privacy and security. Previously, Dr. Mostashari served at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene as assistant commissioner for the Primary Care Information Project, where he co-led agile development of population health management functionality within a commercial EHR. Dr. Mostashari also led the NYC Center of Excellence in Public Health Informatics and an Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality-funded project focused on quality measurement at the point of care.  He conducted graduate training at the Harvard School of Public Health and Yale Medical School, served his internal medicine residency at Massachusetts General Hospital, and completed the CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service program. He was a lead investigator in the outbreaks of West Nile Virus, and anthrax in New York City, and among the first developers of real-time nationwide electronic disease surveillance systems.


Joe Selby, M.D., MPH, is the executive director of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). After obtaining his medical degree from Northwestern, Dr. Selby moved to Northern California for internship and a family medicine residency and eventually a Masters of Public Health degree at UC Berkeley. His fellowship project concerned Behavioral Factors in Cardiovascular Disease. He stayed in the bay area at Kaiser Permanente for 27 years, including 13 as director of research supervising up to 50 investigators and 500 staff members. He has had academic appointments at UC Berkeley, UCSF and Stanford. He has authored more than 200 peer-reviewed articles on far-ranging topics such as quality measurement and improvement, primary care delivery, colorectal cancer screening and many studies that could be classified under the heading of “comparative effectiveness” – largely in the areas of diabetes, HTN and cardiovascular disease. He has received honors from the Public Health Service, the American Epidemiological Society, Kaiser Permanente and in 2009 he was elected into the Institute of Medicine. In July 2011 Dr. Selby became the first executive director of the Patient-Centered Outcome Research Institute (PCORI). PCORI’s mandate is to improve the quality and relevance of the evidence available in order to help patients, caregivers, employers, insurers and policy makers make informed healthcare decisions.


Topher Spiro, J.D., is a senior fellow for Economic Policy and the vice president for health policy at American Progress. He leads teams in conducting policy analysis and mobilizing grass-roots resistance in defense of the Affordable Care Act. Mr. Spiro has regularly advised senior administration officials and members of Congress on policy and strategy. His work has been published in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New England Journal of Medicine, and other publications. Mr. Spiro often testifies before Congress and has appeared on National Public Radio, CNBC, and C-SPAN. Prior to joining American Progress, Mr. Spiro worked on health policy and economic policy in the U.S. Senate. He served as deputy staff director for health policy for the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions under Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA) and Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA). In that role, Mr. Spiro was a member of the team that drafted the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010. As a policy analyst for the Senate Special Committee on Aging and the Joint Economic Committee, Mr. Spiro analyzed and developed policies on pensions, Social Security, and tax and budget issues. Mr. Spiro received his bachelor’s degree from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University and his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law.




Mary Ella Payne, R.N., MPH, is the acting president and chief executive officer at the Alliance for Health Policy. Previously, Ms. Payne was senior vice president for Ascension, the nation’s largest not for profit health care system. Ms. Payne led Ascension’s systemwide advocacy strategy with special attention to persons living in poverty and the vulnerable. Prior to working for Ascension, she was a health care advisor for a senior member of the Finance Committee for 10 years and helped craft the legislation creating the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Ms. Payne has a master’s degree in public health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Bachelor of Science in nursing with honors from the University of Louisville. 


Julie Rovner is the Robin Toner Distinguished Fellow and Chief Washington correspondent at Kaiser Health News. She joined KHN after 16 years as health policy correspondent for NPR, where she helped lead the network’s coverage of the passage and implementation of the Affordable Care Act. A noted expert on health policy issues, Ms. Rovner is the author of the critically praised reference book Health Care Politics and Policy A-Z, now in its third edition. In 2005, she was awarded the National Press Foundation’s Everett McKinley Dirksen Award for distinguished reporting of Congress. Prior to NPR, Ms. Rovner covered health policy for National Journal’s Congress Daily and for Congressional Quarterly, among other organizations.


Kirsten Sloan is vice president for policy for the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) and a member of the Alliance for Health Policy Board of Directors.  In this capacity, she manages a team of seven senior policy principals and analysts with a focus on access to care, emerging science and prevention. Prior to joining ACS CAN Ms. Sloan was vice president of the National Partnership for Women & Families with responsibility for the organization's multi-faceted health portfolio.  Ms. Sloan was also director of Federal Health Issues for AARP. In that role, she served as chief health lobbyist and managed a team of senior lobbyists in AARP’s Government Relations Department.  Earlier in her career at AARP, Ms. Sloan worked as the national coordinator for Health Issues, Health Team Deputy director, Medicare lobbyist, and as legislative specialist with a focus on the Catastrophic Coverage Act. Prior to AARP, Kirsten was the legislative aide for Congressman Norm Dicks (D-WA). Ms. Sloan is a graduate of the University of Washington in Seattle, WA.


Reed Tuckson, M.D., is chair of the Alliance for Health Policy Board of Directors and the managing director of Tuckson Health Connections, a health and medical care consulting business that brings people and ideas together to promote optimal health outcomes. Previously, he enjoyed a long tenure as executive vice president and chief of medical affairs for UnitedHealth Group. Prior to that, Dr. Tuckson’s career includes leadership positions at the American Medical Association, the Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science in Los Angeles, the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, the District of Columbia government.