5 Things California: Keynote panel, Asm. Devon Mathis, Executive moves

The end of the legislative session is on the horizon, and a number of folks in Sacramento are ready to take a breath. At our 2019 Los Angeles State of Reform Health Policy Conference, we will hear from a number of insiders with their take on the session, the progress of the new administration, and how the market will respond.

We’d love to have you with us in 6 weeks time!


DJ 5 Things SignatureWith help from Emily Boerger
and Emily Viles


1. Q&A with Asm. Devon Mathis

Assemblyman Devon Mathis has represented California’s 26th Assembly District since 2014. He currently serves as Vice-Chair of the Human Services Committee and as a member of the Budget Subcommittee on Health and Human Services. He’s a Republican from the Central Valley who earned a Purple Heart from serving two tours in Iraq.

In this interview, Reporter Emily Viles talks with Mathis about health care legislation he is keeping an eye on, his future legislative priorities, and issues around access to care: “We hear this ‘health care for all,’ and it sounds great– of course we all want healthy communities, but the problem comes down to access. And in rural California, frankly, the problem is access because you do not have a whole bunch of doctors and the doctors that we do have are aging out.”

2. Keynote: Baackes, Crane, McCarthy

Three of the most important voices in California health care join us at our Lunch Keynote on “The Future of California Health Care” on September 18th:  John Baackes, CEO of LA Care; Don Crane, CEO of America’s Physician Groups; and Louise McCarthy, CEO of the Community Health Clinic Association of LA.

This midday plenary session at the 2019 Los Angeles State of Reform Health Policy Conferencenext month. The keynote session – like the event overall – is a chance to hear from, network with, and engage some of California’s most important health care and health policy leaders. If you haven’t gotten a chance to get registered, we’d be honored to have you with us!

3. Some movement among executive leaders

There are a few noteworthy moves among California health care leaders. Molina has a new plan president in California. John Kotal “quietly” replaced Deb Miller after three years with her in the position.  Deborah Kelch is stepping down from ITUP after also having served three years in the position.

Ray Baxter is leading the Blue Shield of California Foundation while a search is on for a new CEO. This follows Peter Long’s departure earlier this year as he joined Blue Shield. And, the inimitable Sarah Summer is now firmly ensconced in her role as CEO of California Physician Services Organization.

4. Video: Barsam Kasravi, Anthem Blue Cross

Barsam Kasravi is the California Medi-Cal Plan President at Anthem Blue Cross, and is one of Anthem’s most important thought leaders in the state. He joins us in this edition of “What They’re Watching” to discuss secure food and housing, two social determinants the plan is spending a lot of time working on.

“Medi-Cal 1.0 was really around paying providers for care and then the health plans really focusing on clinical care. As Medi-Cal has evolved, you know, the health plan’s role has changed. It’s now going into the social determinants area — looking at quality in a different way.”

5. CHCF report on All Payer Claims Databases

The California Health Care Foundation released a report reviewing all payer claims databases (APCDs) implemented in other states to inform California’s implementation of its own APCD. The report examines the legal and economic implications of releasing health care cost data, and provides recommendations for best practices.

The report finds that despite concerns about trade secrets, California can require disclosure of information such as negotiated rates for health care services. The report also notes that “the pro-competitive effects of APCDs are likely to outweigh any anti-competitive harms.”