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Challenge Sponsored By

 

People struggle with making sense of their medical bills, especially in or right after times of crisis. AARP would like to see payers, providers, and others in the health care system come together with consumers to create a format that is simple and intuitive for consumers to navigate and understand.

AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, social welfare organization with a membership of nearly 38 million that helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families — such as health care, employment and income security, and protection from financial abuse.

 

In Collaboration With

 

Putting individuals at the center is essential to transforming our health care system to one that delivers better care, smarter spending, and healthier people. To put individuals at the center of the health care system, we must engage and empower them to take ownership of their health by:

  • Giving them the tools they need to navigate the health care system
  • Making price and quality information more accessible, and
  • Listening to the patient voice.

The medical billing process should embody each of these health care consumer priorities. With this challenge, HHS is starting a national conversation about what steps can be taken to improve the medical bill and patients’ experience of the medical billing process – something many Americans have voiced that they want addressed. The challenge invites new players that may traditionally be outside the health care space, such as designers, developers, digital tech start-ups, entrepreneurs, and other innovators, to be part of the solution.

It is the mission of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) to enhance and protect the health and well-being of all Americans. We fulfill that mission by providing for effective health and human services and fostering advances in medicine, public health, and social services.

+ More
 

Mad*Pow is passionate about fundamentally improving the experience of health for everyone, and is fully dedicated to supporting this design and innovation challenge. Mad*Pow has worked with AARP, HHS, the pilot partners, and other stakeholders to help construct the challenge so that it will yield solutions that are both forward-looking and implementable.  To help ensure that challenge participants have the information they need to understand the problem space, Mad*Pow led a research effort to help shape the challenge, including patient interviews, a patient survey, and interviews with health care organizations.

Mad*Pow is a design agency that improves the experiences people have with technology, organizations, and each other. The organization uses design thinking and human-centered design to fulfill its purpose of helping people improve their health, achieve financial wellbeing, learn, and connect. Mad*Pow collaborates with clients to fully understand and empathize with the needs of the people they serve and envision a journey across channels that delivers what is important, every step of the way. Founded in 2000, Mad*Pow has partnered with many industry leaders and has received honors for design excellence by the Webby Awards, MITX, and the W3C. The agency runs an annual conference focusing on improving health through human-centered design and technology called HxRefactored and just launched the Center for Health Experience Design which will serve as a resource for design and experiential innovation in health.

 

Through its series of conferences, code-a-thons, prize challenges and pilot programs, Health 2.0 reaches an innovation network which spans dozens of countries, and includes hundreds of thousands of people interested in technology innovation in health. Catalyst @ Health 2.0 (Health 2.0’s developer challenge team) facilitates innovation to move new technologies from concept to commercialization. In particular, Catalyst has run a number of design challenges that crowdsource new concepts to address problems in health. Design challenges provide an opportunity for a broad community of multidisciplinary individuals interested in health to showcase their work and bring attention to complex issues.

Health 2.0 is the premiere showcase and catalyst for the advancement of new health technologies. Through a global series of conferences, developer competitions, and leading market intelligence, Health 2.0 drives the innovation and collaboration necessary to transform health and health care. In addition to its flagship event held in the Bay Area each fall, Health 2.0 hosts events around the world including in Europe, Latin America, India, Korea, and Japan.

 

Pilot Partners

The following health systems and insurance companies are committed to improving the medical billing experience for the patients and members they serve. These organizations have agreed to identifying opportunities to work with challenge winners to test or implement their solutions in whole or in part to help bring something to market. These organizations participated in the stakeholder interviews that informed the challenge and have provided guiding resources as well.  

 
 

Cambia’s companies are working to streamline consumer financing issues because they understand the confusion and frustration that can result when consumers receive a “pre-bill” from health care providers, an explanation of benefits (EOB) from insurers, and multiple follow-up bills from different providers for different amounts. This challenge is a unique opportunity for Cambia and like-minded organizations to collaborate and find solutions to simplify and condense the consumer billing process. Given the opportunities that exist for payer and provider collaboration in this space, Cambia and University of Utah Health Care are teaming up to test or implement the solutions that may emerge from this challenge.

Cambia Health Solutions, headquartered in Portland, Oregon, is a nonprofit total health solutions company dedicated to transforming health care by creating a person-focused and economically sustainable system. Cambia’s growing family of companies range from software and mobile applications, health care marketplaces, non-traditional health care delivery models, health insurance, life insurance, pharmacy benefit management, wellness and overall consumer engagement. Through bold thinking and innovative technology, Cambia is delivering solutions that make high-quality health care more available, affordable and personally relevant for everyone. Cambia’s companies are working to streamline consumer financing issues, creating Treatment Cost Estimator and Provider Search tools to inform and empower their consumers with the information they need to better understand what to expect when they engage the health care system.

 
 

Geisinger welcomes this opportunity to collaborate with HHS and other leading health care organizations to improve the billing process. This effort aligns with Geisinger’s commitment to improve the patient and member experience and to “get it right every time for every patient and member.” It is also in line with Geisinger’s overall commitment to transparency in quality, estimating costs, and explaining benefits and medical bills. The organization is currently working to redesign its patient bill and Geisinger Health Plan member explanation of benefits (EOBs), focused on making the bills and EOBs easy to understand, and designed and written in a user-friendly manner. Through its involvement with this challenge, Geisinger anticipates learning from other organizations and is hopeful best practices for facilitating the public’s understanding of medical billing will emerge.

Geisinger Health System is an integrated health services organization widely recognized for its innovative use of the electronic health record and the development of innovative care delivery models. As one of the nation’s largest health service organizations, Geisinger serves more than 3 million residents throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The physician-led system is comprised of approximately 30,000 employees, including nearly 1,600 employed physicians, 12 hospital campuses, two research centers and a 510,000-member health plan. Geisinger has repeatedly garnered national accolades for integration, quality and service. In addition to fulfilling its patient care mission, Geisinger has a long-standing commitment to medical education, research and community service.

 
 

INTEGRIS believes patients should have access to all the information they need to make informed decisions about their care and understand the cost of their health care. It has established a Consumer Priceline to help their patients obtain pricing information on procedures and services offered at any INTEGRIS Health facility. This challenge will help INTEGRIS in its pledge to be transparent and accountable to its patients, with full, accurate, understandable and timely disclosure of information. Being a part of this challenge will help INTEGRIS hold itself and hopefully other health care providers accountable to that high standard.

INTEGRIS is Oklahoma’s largest locally owned not-for-profit health care system that provides a full spectrum of care, from wellness initiatives to leading-edge clinical care using the latest technologies and medical advancements. Collectively, INTEGRIS maintains more than 1,900 licensed beds and has medical staff that number more than 2,500 physicians. The entities that make up INTEGRIS include 10 hospitals (eight of which are acute-care), eight Centers of Excellence, more than 100 clinics, rehab centers, mental health facilities, fitness centers, independent living centers and home health agencies.

 
 

Improving the patient medical billing experience is important to MetroHealth because it is an opportunity to be innovative and disruptive. MetroHealth includes its patients as it continues to work on enhancing its billing statements, doing so using patient focus groups and soliciting continued patient experience and customer service feedback. MetroHealth believes including patients in the process is a catalyst to be completely patient-centric and promote patient satisfaction. It hopes that what comes out of the challenge is the opportunity to participate in multiple pilots that change culture for payers and hospitals; to standardize language and terms for the billing statement and explanation of benefits (EOBs); and to possibly combine both of these to eliminate reconciliation. 

The MetroHealth System is an essential health system committed to providing health care to everyone in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, and improving the health of the community overall. Its 6,900 employees deliver care to everyone at its main campus and at more than 27 other MetroHealth locations, providing more than one million patient visits last year. MetroHealth also provides health care at more than 20 additional sites in Cuyahoga County through community partnerships such as the School Health Program. It is an academic medical center committed to teaching and research; each of its active physicians holds a faculty appointment at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. MetroHealth has earned Magnet status, which places it in the top 6 percent of all hospitals nationwide for nursing excellence.

 
 

Providence believes that the bills that its patients receive should not reflect the complexity inherent in health care today. For some years, Providence has been on a journey to simplify its medical billing, and sees this work as a fundamental part of its care as a mission-driven organization. It is one of the many ways Providence expresses its deep commitment to providing for the needs of its communities and to simplifying health for everyone. Providence has conducted comprehensive research to discover consumer “pain points” with their health care bills and adapted their medical billing process based on these findings. Across its five-state system, including affiliates, Providence has one philosophy for billing that reflects patient-centered care. It works with its insurers to resolve any issues with its providers before involving patients—working hard to keep patients out of the middle. Providence is thrilled to be part of a nationwide design challenge to achieve better health care bills, and would like to see best practices broadly shared and adopted across providers. 

Providence is the third largest not-for-profit health system in the United States, operating 34 hospitals, 600 physician clinics, 22 long-term care facilities, 19 hospice and home health programs and 693 supportive housing units in 14 locations. Providence’s health plan serves its caregivers and other large employer groups, covering 513,000 members. On any given day, Providence cares for more than 1,200 people in its long-term care settings, more than 4,000 in its hospitals and more than 15,000 in its clinic settings. Daily, Providence also serves more than 7,000 people in many of its home health and palliative care programs and almost 800 in supportive housing.

 
 

University of Utah Health Care is transforming health care, and key to this transformation is focusing on the patient experience - pre–treatment, treatment, post-treatment. The health system currently encourages patients to use MyChart, a secure online health management tool that gives them more immediate access to their billing information. This challenge aligns with University of Utah Health Care’s patient-centric approach and it hopes the challenge leads to a health care bill that is easy for patients to understand. This bill should clearly show how much each item costs, what insurance covers, and what is left to be paid out of pocket. Given the opportunities that exist for provider and payer collaboration in this space, University of Utah Health Care and Cambia are teaming up to test or implement the solutions that may emerge from this challenge.

University of Utah Health Care is the Intermountain West’s only academic health care system, providing leading-edge and compassionate medicine for the people of Utah and a referral area encompassing five states and more than 10 percent of the continental United States. The health system includes four hospitals – University of Utah Hospital; the University of Utah Orthopedic Center; University Neuropsychiatric Institute; and Huntsman Cancer Hospital – with more than 1,300 physicians practicing more than 150 medical specialties. University of Utah Health Care has ranked among the top 10 U.S. academic medical centers in the rigorous University HealthSystem Consortium Quality and Accountability study for six years running. It is also consistently ranked among the country’s best hospitals in U.S. News and World Report’s annual Best Hospitals list.

 
 
 
 
 
 
"Our system is completely insane and I hope it collapses soon, so a new, more sensible system might arise from the ashes."

- MAD*POW PATIENT SURVEY RESPONDENT

 
 
 

46%

Of Mad*Pow patient survey respondents said that their actions didn't clear up their frustration with their bill

 
 
 
"No one could tell me what the procedure would cost exactly. Zero transparency."

- MAD*POW PATIENT SURVEY RESPONDENT

 
 
"Patients don’t want separate bills from the hospital, nursing, doctors. We want one statement that shows everything we owe for that service."

- MAD*POW PATIENT SURVEY RESPONDENT

 
 
 

52%

of Mad*Pow patient survey respondents didn’t do anything prior to their visit to research the cost

 
 
 
 
 
"The system is too complicated for me to change."

- MAD*POW PATIENT SURVEY RESPONDENT

 
 
 

56%

of Mad*Pow patient survey respondents were hesitant about seeking additional medical care after their experience with medical bills

 
 
 
 
 
“I finally gave up and paid the bills, still not knowing what they were for.”

- MAD*POW PATIENT SURVEY RESPONDENT


Judges

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Patrick Conway, MD, MSc


DEPUTY ADMINISTRATOR FOR INNOVATION & QUALITY, CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER, CENTERS FOR MEDICARE & MEDICAID SERVICES

Patrick Conway, MD, MSc, is the Deputy Administrator for Innovation and Quality & CMS Chief Medical Officer. He leads the Center for Clinical Standards and Quality (CCSQ) and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) at CMS.  CCSQ is responsible for all quality measures for CMS, value-based purchasing programs, quality improvement programs in all 50 states, clinical standards and survey and certification of Medicare and Medicaid health care providers across the nation, and all Medicare coverage decisions for treatments and services.

The center’s budget exceeds $2 billion annually and is a major force for quality and transformation across Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, and the U.S. health care system. The CMS Innovation Center is responsible for testing numerous new payment and service delivery models across the nation. Models include accountable care organizations, bundled payments, primary care medical homes, state innovation models, and many more. Successful models can be scaled nationally. The CMS Innovation Center budget is $10 billion over 10 years.

Previously, he was Director of Hospital Medicine and an Associate Professor at Cincinnati Children's Hospital. He was also AVP Outcomes Performance, responsible for leading measurement, including the electronic health record measures, and facilitating improvement of health outcomes across the health care system. Other relevant experience includes previous work as the Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. In 2007-08, he was a White House Fellow assigned to the Office of Secretary in HHS and the Director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. He also served as Executive Director of the Federal Coordinating Council on Comparative Effectiveness Research coordinating the investment of the $1.1 billion for CER in the Recovery Act. He was a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar and completed a Master's of Science focused on health services research and clinical epidemiology at the University of Pennsylvania and Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Previously, he was a management consultant at McKinsey & Company, serving senior management of mainly health care clients on strategy projects.

He has published articles in journals such as JAMA, New England Journal of Medicine, Health Affairs, and Pediatrics and given national presentations on topics including health care policy, quality of care, comparative effectiveness, hospitalist systems, and quality improvement. He is a practicing pediatric hospitalist and was selected as a Master of Hospital Medicine from the Society of Hospital Medicine. He has received the HHS Secretary’s Award for Distinguished Service. This is the Secretary’s highest distinction for excellence. He completed pediatrics residency at Harvard Medical School's Children's Hospital Boston, graduated with High Honors from Baylor College of Medicine, and graduated summa cum laude from Texas A&M University.

 
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Karen DeSalvo, MD, MPH, MSc


ACTING ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HEALTH, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

Dr. Karen DeSalvo, the Acting Assistant Secretary for Health in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is a physician who has focused her career toward improving access to affordable, high quality care for all people, especially vulnerable populations, and promoting overall health. She has done this through direct patient care, medical education, policy and administrative roles, research, and public service. Her commitment to improving the public’s health includes leveraging public-private partnerships to address the social determinants of health through environmental, policy and systems level changes.

The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, which Dr. DeSalvo directs, oversees 12 core public health offices — including the Office of the Surgeon General and the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps — as well as 10 regional health offices across the nation and 10 Presidential and Secretarial advisory committees. The office is charged with leadership in developing policy recommendations as they pertain to public health issues that cut across HHS agencies and operating divisions.

Dr. DeSalvo also remains in her role as the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, where she continues to set high level policy and the strategic direction of the office, including efforts related to interoperability. The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) is at the forefront of the nation’s health IT efforts to adopt and meaningfully use health information technology, and collectively achieve health information technology interoperability, as a foundational element of better health for everyone in America.

Before joining the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, she was Health Commissioner for the City of New Orleans, and Senior Health Policy Advisor to New Orleans Mayor Mitchell Landrieu, from 2011-2014. While there, she transformed the outmoded health department to one that has since achieved national accreditation and recognition, and restored health care to devastated areas of the city, including leading the establishment of a public hospital.

Following Hurricane Katrina, Dr. DeSalvo was a community leader in building an innovative and award-winning model of neighborhood-based primary care and mental health services for low-income, uninsured and other vulnerable individuals.

Dr. DeSalvo was also a professor of medicine and vice dean for community affairs and health policy at Tulane University School of Medicine. She served as president of the Louisiana Health Care Quality Forum, the state’s lead for the health information exchange, and the National Association of Chiefs of General Internal Medicine. She has also served on the boards of the National Association of County and City Health Officials and the Society of General Internal Medicine.

Dr. DeSalvo has received many honors, including recognition as a "Woman of Excellence in Health Care" by the Louisiana Legislative Women’s Caucus. In 2013, Governing Magazine named Dr. DeSalvo one of nine Public Officials of the Year. The American Medical Student Association recognized her with a Women’s Leader Award in 2014. Modern Healthcare named her one of the 50 most influential physician executives in 2015.

Dr. DeSalvo earned her Medical Doctorate and Master’s in Public Health from Tulane University, and Master's in Clinical Epidemiology from Harvard School of Public Health. She has an honorary doctorate from her alumnus institution, Suffolk University. She was in the National Health Service Corps Scholarship program, an HHS/HRSA program that supports the development of students pursuing primary care health professions who are committed to working in underserved communities.

 

Mary Wakefield, PhD, RN


ACTING DEPUTY SECRETARY, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

Mary Wakefield, Ph.D., R.N., serves as the Acting Deputy Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.

Prior to becoming Acting Deputy Secretary, Dr. Wakefield was administrator of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) from 2009 to 2015. HRSA, an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, works to strengthen the health care workforce, build healthy communities, increase health equity, and provide health care and support services to people who are geographically isolated, economically or medically vulnerable, or live in a health professional shortage area.

Dr. Wakefield joined HRSA from the University of North Dakota (UND), where she was associate dean for rural health at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences.

In the 1990s, she served as chief of staff to two North Dakota senators: Kent Conrad (D) and Quentin Burdick (D).

She also has served as director of the Center for Health Policy, Research and Ethics at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., and worked on site as a consultant to the World Health Organization's Global Programme on AIDS in Geneva, Switzerland.

Dr. Wakefield is a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing and a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM). She served on the IOM committee that produced the landmark reports To Err is Human and Crossing the Quality Chasm. She also co-chaired the IOM committee that produced the report Health Professions Education and chaired the committee that produced the report Quality through Collaboration: Health Care in Rural America.

In addition, she has served on the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, as chair of the National Advisory Council for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, as a member of President Clinton's Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry, and as a member of the National Advisory Committee to HRSA's Office of Rural Health Policy.

Dr. Wakefield is a native of Devils Lake, N.D. She has a bachelor of science degree in nursing from the University of Mary in Bismarck and master's and doctoral degrees in nursing from the University of Texas at Austin.

 

Advisory Panel

Amy Cueva


FOUNDER & CHIEF EXPERIENCE OFFICER, MAD*POW

Amy believes that design can help improve the human condition. It was with that mission and vision that she founded Mad*Pow in 2000 with Will Powley, and together they’ve created an award-winning agency that partners with clients to improve health, help people achieve financial wellbeing, help them learn, and connect.

Amy plays an essential role in Mad*Pow’s visualization of a changed healthcare system in the United States. Her work with organizations like Dartmouth Hitchcock, Brigham and Women’s Hospital , CVS, and Fidelity has helped them improve the customer experience, leverage design to drive change, and facilitate human-centric innovation. As the chief instigator behind Mad*Pow’s Healthcare Experience Design Conference, HxRefactored, and the managing director of the Center for Healthy Experience Design Amy has successfully connected and networked disparate parts of a challenging and siloed system.

As a speaker, Ms. Cueva shares her vision worldwide at influential events such as Design Management Institute, Innovation Learning Network, UXPA, IA Summit, Partners Center for Connected Health Symposium, Stanford MedicineX, Mobile World Congress, Health 2.0, and HIMSS.

With her partners Will Powley and Bradley Honeyman, Amy’s grown Mad*Pow’s presence, client base, and revenue, leading to Mad*Pow’s 2009 recognition as one of Inc. 500’s fastest growing privately held companies. Mass High Tech, which named her one of its 2009 Women to Watch, has recognized Amy’s passion, energy, and commitment, and she’s been acknowledged as one of Boston’s “40 Under 40" by the Boston Business Journal for 2014 and also made MedTech Boston’s “40 under 40” list in that same year.. She supports the vision and mission of An Orphan's Dream a nonprofit organization offering an oasis for AIDS-orphaned children in Gachoka, Kenya. Amy also serves as an advisory board member for Behavioral Health Innovators, a group dedicated to improving mental health and addiction recovery experiences.

 

Paul Kahn


EXPERIENCE DESIGN DIRECTOR, MAD*POW

Paul has been working professionally with digital information for many years, specializing in solving large information problems. The name for what he does keeps changing – hypertext research, information design, digital design, information architecture, user experience. But whatever you call it, his work always has the same focus: shaping and designing collections of digital information to improve user experience. Paul is constantly looking for the difference that makes a difference, the threshold of acceptance, the patterns that connect people to the information they need.

Paul joins Mad*Pow after a decade working in the design community of Paris, France, where he created the first agency in France focused on information architecture. He also taught the subject in several professional Masters programs. His portfolio includes clients in the biomedical field, literary publishers, large cultural institutions and international corporations in the US and Europe.

Paul has been a thought leader on both sides of the Atlantic, developing many of the visualization techniques used in information architecture practice through his collaborations with Krzysztof Lenk, with whom he co-founded Dynamic Diagrams in Providence, RI. He teaches information architecture and interaction design at several design schools, holds a Docent position at Media Lab, Aalto University in Helsinki, and often presents at professional conferences.

Whether he’s playing with computers or not, Paul is a writer, a reader of books and a traveler. He writes scientific and design books, journal articles and conference papers, as well as poetry, fiction and essays on visual art and literature.

 

Jeffrey Makowka


DIRECTOR, MARKET INNOVATION, AARP

Mr. Makowka has over fifteen years’ experience in strategic consulting and market research. For more than half of that time, he has been focused on the wants and needs of the 50+, both domestically and internationally. As a Director of Market Innovation in AARP’s Enterprise Strategy and Innovation group, Jeff helped to launch, and now co-manages, the Innovation@50+ initiative, which aims to spark entrepreneurial activity across public and private sectors.  Anchored by the AARP social mission – to enhance the quality of life for all as we age – the program enlists the expertise of visionary thinkers, entrepreneurs, the investment community, industry, and not-for-profits to spur innovation to meet the needs and wants of people over 50.

A frequent public speaker and recognized expert on the needs and wants of the 50+, Jeff speaks regularly at industry events and conferences including Digital Health Summit, Healthbeat, Health 2.0, HXR Refactored, SilversSummit, Medcity Converge, What’s Next Boomer Business Summit. He has been quoted in publications such as Fast Company, Venturebeat.com, NPR.org, USA Today, Forbes.com and AARP the Magazine.

Mr. Makowka earned a Bachelors of Arts in Philosophy and English Literature (double major) and received his Masters of Arts (Licentiate) in Philosophy (Magna Cum Laude).

 
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Diana Cruz


VP, Claims Operations and Tech Services, Cambia

Diana spent 16 years at Cigna, in a variety of leadership roles in Finance, Claims, and Operating Effectiveness before coming to Cambia in October, 2015. Diana is also a Six Sigma Black Belt.                                              
Diana serves on the Board of Directors for Familias en Acción, an organization that focuses on serving Latino individuals who have been diagnosed with chronic diseases.   

                                   
She completed her undergraduate studies at Stanford University with a B.A in International Relations.

 

Sara Lehman Laskey, MD


VP & CHIEF PATIENT EXPERIENCE OFFICER, METRO HEALTH SYSTEM

Dr. Sara Laskey, MD, was named the first Chief Patient Experience Officer at Cleveland’s MetroHealth System in late 2013. In this position, Dr. Laskey is responsible for the leadership, design, and implementation of initiatives that fulfill the patient-centered mission and vision of MetroHealth. She collaborates with MetroHealth executives, medical staff, and department directors to develop and implement best practices, training programs and communications that are transforming the culture of MetroHealth.

In the past two years, Dr. Laskey and her team developed and implemented Pathways to Patient Experience, an innovative three-hour training for every MetroHealth employee. She has launched a recognition program, “Star IQ Genius,” to honor those employees whose behavior is exemplary of patient-centered care as well as implementing “Executive Leadership Rounding” for administrative and clinical leaders throughout the organization. Currently, she is deploying an intensive service and leadership program, Pathways To Caring. She also oversees the departments of Volunteer Services, Patient Relations and Survivor Recovery Services.

In December of 2014, Dr Laskey along with Linda Jackson started the first department of Arts in Medicine for the MetroHealth System. The department mission is to promote healing, wellness and increased sense of engagement through the integration of the creative and therapeutic arts into the healthcare experience of the patient, family, caregiver and greater community.

In addition to her Patient Experience responsibilities, Dr. Laskey is also an attending physician in the Emergency Department at MetroHealth and previously was the Director of Medical Operations for the department, a position she held from 2011 through 2013. She is an assistant professor at Case Western Reserve School of Medicine. Her undergraduate degree is in performance studies from Northwestern University. She has also studied at The Second City in Chicago and earned a BFA (bachelor of Fun arts) from Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Clown College. She performed as a circus clown with the Greatest Show on Earth from 1988-1990.

 

Greg Meyers


SYSTEM VP, REVENUE INTEGRITY, INTEGRIS

Greg Meyers joined INTEGRIS Health in August, 1994. He is currently responsible for system wide payer contracting, pricing strategy, as well as all physician and hospital revenue cycle activities.

In addition, Mr. Meyers was instrumental in the development of INTEGRIS Health Partners, the state of Oklahoma’s first Clinically Integrated Network comprised of over 1,150 physicians affiliated with INTEGRIS Health and which currently covers 40,000 covered lives under risk-based agreements. 

During his tenure at INTEGRIS Health, Mr. Meyers served as Interim CEO of HealthCare Oklahoma, one of the state’s first provider sponsored HMOs which served both commercial and Medicare Advantage populations.

Prior to joining INTEGRIS, Mr. Meyers held leadership positions at the Saint Francis Health System in Tulsa, in the Provost Office at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and as Assistant to the President at the Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Mr. Meyers is a nationally recognized authority in healthcare finance and is a regular speaker for the Leadership Institute, World Congress, World Research Group and is a winner of the 2015 HFMA MAP award for Revenue Cycle Excellence. He is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma and holds a Bachelors Degree in Economics and a Masters of Business Administration degree.

 
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Teresa Spalding


VP, REVENUE CYCLE, PROVIDENCE HEALTH & SERVICES

As a member of the leadership team at Providence, Teresa leads work to develop and maintain innovative revenue models that will provide significant value to our patients, our providers and the many organizations that partner with our large health system. Her teams work to be highly cost effective and integrated while ensuring compliance with all levels of government regulation. Together, they are helping to create healthier communities and simplify health care for everyone.

Teresa’s entire career has been in service of not-for-profit health care. Her continuing passion has been to improve the patient experience and help make free and discounted care available to those most in need, including the growing numbers of patients who are underinsured. These priorities have animated her work to lead redesign of service delivery models since joining Providence in 1991, such as a successful simplified billing initiative. She has created a uniquely integrated structure that brings hospitals, employed physicians and home services into common, integrated revenue cycle functions to better support the consumer experience. Thanks to her leadership during the recent installation of one of the country’s largest installations of an electronic health record, Providence has fully evolved from a decentralized revenue cycle to an integrated model.

Prior to joining Providence, Teresa worked at PeaceHealth in Oregon. Her professional contributions include serving as past president of the Healthcare Financial Management Association in Oregon, and participating in many public and private advisory groups charged with improving access to and process for charity care.

Teresa holds a degree in computer science from Evergreen State College in Washington. She divides her time between the Seattle, Washington and Portland, Oregon areas.

 

Barbara Tapscott


VP, Revenue Management, Geisinger

Barbara Tapscott has served as Vice President Revenue Management since 2008 and is responsible for end-to-end revenue cycle management for the clinical enterprise; Ms. Tapscott previously served as GHS Senior Director of Hospital Revenue Cycle operations.

 

Stan Sorensen


DIRECTOR, CLINICAL MARKETING, UNIVERSITY OF UTAH HEALTH CARE

Stan Sorensen joined University of Utah Health Care in 2016 as Director of Clinical Marketing.  His responsibilities include creating strategies that help service lines achieve their goals while steering the broader discussion around how healthcare is changing and what that means to patients and practitioners.  Stan brings 20 plus years of marketing and product management experience to the University of Utah.  

 
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Andrea Brassard, PhD, FNP-BC, FAANP


Senior Strategic Policy Adviser, Center to Champion Nursing in America, AARP

Andrea Brassard recently returned from the American Nurses Association to the Center to Champion Nursing in America, an initiative of AARP Foundation, AARP, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to improve America’s health through nursing. Andrea is a senior adviser on strategic policy for the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action,a national initiative of those same organizations to transform health care through nursing and build healthier communities for everyone in America. 

At the American Nurses Association, Andrea was director of health policy. She was formerly full-time faculty at the School of Nursing at the George Washington University and continues as an adjunct professor. A nationally certified family nurse practitioner, she is past president of the Nurse Practitioner Association of the District of Columbia and occasionally practices at a retail health clinic system on weekends. Andrea received PhD and MPH degrees from Columbia University, where she was a funded public policy fellow.

 
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Michael Villaire, MSLM


Chief Executive Officer, Institute for Healthcare Advancement

Michael Villaire, MSLM, is Chief Executive Officer for the Institute for Healthcare Advancement, a nonprofit healthcare public charity dedicated to empowering people to better health, with a major mission emphasis in health literacy.  He has written numerous articles and two books on various aspects of health literacy, and lectures nationally on health literacy. His background includes 20 years as managing editor for peer-reviewed journals in nursing and medicine. As CEO of IHA, he leads its health literacy initiatives, including its annual continuing education conference, easy to read self-help health books, and several research projects.

 

Ateev Mehrotra, M.D.


Associate Professor, Department of Health Care Policy, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Mehrotra is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School and a Hospitalist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.  Much of Dr. Mehrotra’s research focuses on the role of consumerism and whether price transparency and public reporting of quality can impact patient decision making.

 
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Ann Hwang, M.D.


Center for Consumer Engagement in Health Innovation, Community Catalyst

Ann Hwang, MD is Director of the Center for Consumer Engagement in Health Innovation. The Center is a hub devoted to teaching, learning and sharing knowledge to bring the consumer experience to the forefront of health. The Center works directly with consumer advocates to increase the skills and power they have to establish an effective voice at all levels of the health care system. It collaborates with innovative health plans, hospitals and providers to incorporate the consumer experience into the design of their systems of care. It works with state and federal policymakers to spur change that makes the health system more responsive to the needs of consumers, with an emphasis on the care of vulnerable populations.

Dr. Hwang has been a visiting Fellow at the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School where she teaches and contributes to research on health care policy. As the former Director of Health Care Policy and Strategy for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services, Dr. Hwang played a leading role in the implementation of the state’s major health care initiatives, including the Affordable Care Act (ACA), payment and delivery system reform and the Commonwealth's State Innovation Model grant. She has also served as a Senior Health Policy Advisor to the Massachusetts Health Connector, advised states on ACA implementation as a Senior Consultant with the Wakely Consulting Group and worked on HIV and global health issues as a legislative aide to U.S. Senator Richard J. Durbin (D-IL).

Dr. Hwang received her medical degree from the University of California, San Francisco. She completed her internship and residency in Internal Medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston and has worked as an attending physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the VA Boston Healthcare System. In addition to leading the Center, she is a primary care physician with Commonwealth Care Alliance.

 
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Joseph Ditré


Director of Enterprise and Innovation, Families USA

Joseph Ditré is the Director of Enterprise and Innovation at Families USA, where he oversees two large areas of work: the private insurance marketplace and health system improvement. His role includes deepening alliances, collaborations, and partnerships with the group’s extensive network of state-based partner organizations and with national consumer organizations, as well as expanding the group’s collaborative work with other health system stakeholders, especially those who live in, work in, advocate for, and serve communities of color and non-English speaking communities.

Mr. Ditré has more than 30 years of experience in researching, analyzing, and reporting on private and public health insurance policies and programs. In addition, as the Founding Executive Director of Consumers for Affordable Health Care, a Maine health policy and advocacy organization, he understands the budget constraints faced by state-based nonprofit organizations and how essential collaboration is to advancing and achieving major system reforms.

 
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Sonji Wilkes


Marketing & Communications Manager, Hemophilia Federation of America

Sonji Wilkes began her advocacy work after a decade of dealing with her family’s insurance struggles. Her battle led to the story of her family being published by multiple national and international media, as well as being recognized by the White House. Soon after, Sonji joined the Hemophilia Federation of America (HFA) as a Program Manager for the HFA Families Program, coordinating educational and advocacy outreach for parents of children with bleeding disorders. She began HFA's popular “Infusing Love” mom’s blog; over 225,000 people saw the blog on social media in the blog’s first year. Most recently, Sonji has taken on the role of HFA’s Marketing and Communications Manager, overseeing HFA’s digital communications. Sonji’s son has hemophilia and inhibitor, and she is intimately familiar with the challenge of caring for a child with a chronic disorder medically while also navigating the health care system and is dedicated to helping other families better understand how to advocate for their families. Sonji graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Behavioral Science from the Metropolitan State College of Denver in 2001.

 
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Robin LaRue


Benefits & Employment Specialist, National MS Society

Robin LaRue has nearly 20 years of experience in the fields of education and the human services.  In her role of Benefits & Employment Specialist, she makes complex matters such as Medicare, the Affordable Care Act and employment rights accessible to individuals with MS who reach out to the National MS Society for support.  Her goal is to ensure that every constituent has the tools they need to make informed choices so they may live their best lives.

 
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Courtney Jones


Senior Case Management Director, Patient Advocate Foundation

Ms. Jones is the Senior Case Management Director for the Patient Advocate Foundation. She is responsible for all aspects of the case management department, ensuring compliance with contractual obligations, quality service levels and serves as the primary operational point of contact for existing donor partnerships. She monitors trends on various healthcare related issues and provides information on emerging trends to the PAF leadership team. While working collaboratively with PAF Executives, she promotes and expands programs that continue to support PAF’s mission. 

Ms. Jones has over 12 years of experience with PAF serving in multiple roles over the years as Director of LIVESTRONG partnership, Quality Assurance Coordinator and Director of Contract Vendor Services. Several of her professional accomplishments include development and expansion of Quality Assurance Standards for over 50 case managers; ensuring the highest level of service and attention to detail. In her role as Director of Contract Vendor Services she developed work processes designed to increase functionality and efficiency, which resulted in PAF continually exceeding monthly target goals. In previous years, Mrs. Jones has served on the PAF Publications Committee and has co-authored several publications which have been produced and copyrighted by the Foundation. She serves as an integral part of the patient services training program.

 

Bernadette Mauro


Director, Information & Resources, Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation Paralysis Resource Center

Bernadette Mauro has worked for the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation since the inception of the Paralysis Resource Center (PRC) in 2002. Bernadette manages the Reeve Foundation’s Information Specialists who are the pulse of the PRC. As the Director of Information and Resources, she and the Information Specialists address the needs of individuals living with paralysis, their family members, and their caregivers and provide individualized support by helping them navigate the vast amount of information and services available to them. 

Bernadette pulls from her many years of experience and expertise to devise personalized plans and approaches to getting individuals living with paralysis back into their communities and a place of well-being. Through her experience in private case management, and information and referral work, she is skilled in identifying consumer needs within the paralysis community. Bernadette spearheads the content development for the PRC’s patient education materials and the website, along with managing the Military and Veterans Program and its Advisory Council.

Bernadette has worked in collaboration with a number of non-profits and patient education groups in order to meet the needs of the patient. Bernadette sits on the board of the Paralyzed Veterans of America’s Consortium for Spinal Cord Medicine. She is on an advisory committee to create a new pressure sore/ulcer protocol at Johns Hopkins’ Bloomberg School of Public Health. She also moderates paralysis-based online chat rooms and serves as a volunteer peer mentor in the paralysis community.

 
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Catherine Blansfield, MA, BS, RN


Vice President, Access and Outcomes Services, National Organization for Rare Disorders

Catherine Blansfield, MA, BS, RN is the Vice President of Access and Outcomes Services for the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). Catherine’s primary responsibilities in this role include NORD’s patient financial support service offerings and research programs. She brings to NORD a depth of experience regarding new program implementation and process improvement strategies as focused upon healthcare excellence.

Catherine began her career as a critical care nurse at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, then transitioned to medical device sales and marketing which evolved into leadership roles within the pharmaceutical industry. As Executive Director, Catherine worked to improve quality and outcomes pertaining to patient care at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center and at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary in Manhattan. Immediately prior to joining NORD, Catherine provided executive oversight for hospital systems seeking guidance regarding supply chain efficiencies from the Greater New York Hospital Association, with whom she was employed. Catherine was elected to the school board while living in Bonsall, California and has served on several other boards in a leadership capacity. She received her BS RN from the University of Vermont and her MA from the University of Phoenix in Organizational Management. Catherine currently resides in Danbury, Connecticut.

 
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Karin Hitselberger


Public Education Associate, United Cerebral Palsy

Karin Hitselberger is a 25-year-old woman with cerebral palsy. She currently lives in DC and works at United Cerebral Palsy as a Public Education Associate, and is in charge of all information and referral inquiries, as well as responsible for managing UCP’s two micro sites My Life Without Limits and My Child Without Limits. She has bachelors degrees in communications studies and religious studies from the University of Miami. She is currently working towards her Masters degree in disability studies from the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. 

Karin is passionate about disability rights and believes that all movements towards equity must be intersectional to really make an impact on the world. She is a blogger who writes about the intersection of disability issues and everyday life at www.claimingcrip.com. Her writing has been featured on the Huffington Post and The Body is Not an Apology. She has consulted on disability issues for BuzzFeed. She was also featured on BuzzFeed for work in inclusive fashion, and was recently named one of the Voices of the Year by Sheknows Media and Blogher. She has presented about disability issues at numerous conferences including the American Psychological Association and the Society for Disability studies.

Recently she was one of 12 young adults appointed to the Got Transition’s National Young Adult Advisory Board, which is dedicated to improving healthcare for young adults with and without disabilities at the age of transition.

She is a firm believer in the social model of disability, and believes that we should work towards making our world a more accessible and inclusive place, rather than focusing on “fixing” people.