Detailed Agenda

Our 2018 Northern California State of Reform Health Policy Conference Detailed Agenda is a list of over 60 speakers and experts from across the spectrum of care. The heading colors correspond to track colors on our Topical Agenda to help you organize your day.

The agenda and speaker list are driven by input from our Convening Panel of leaders in California health care and we’re looking forward to a great event on April 26th. If you’re not already registered you can do so here.

For now, let us know if you have any questions about the conference. We look forward to seeing you in Sacramento!



Welcome and Introduction

This opening session will key off the day with comments framing the conference agenda, and the role State of Reform hopes to play in a new era of policy and politics.

DJ Wilson: Host, State of Reform


Morning Keynote: A Conversation with Senator Ed Hernandez

Sen. Ed Hernandez, OD, is one of California’s most important health policy leaders.  He chairs the Senate Committee on Health where he has helped pass some of California’s most impactful healthcare legislation.  In this morning session, Sen. Hernandez will join DJ Wilson on stage for a conversation about the 2018 legislative session, policy issues he expects to play out this year, and where the future of California health care is heading.

Senator Ed Hernandez: Chair, California Senate Committee on Health


Morning Keynote: The Role of the AG's Office in California Health Care

Melanie Fontes Rainer is the Chief Policy Advisor and Special Assistant to California Attorney General Xavier Becerra. Formerly, she was the senior health policy staff person for the US Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee and the Chief of Staff at the Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office at CMS. She'll update us on the AG's legal actions to protect the ACA and address what it sees as anti-competitive action in California's health care system.

Melanie Fontes Rainer: Chief Policy Advisor and Special Assistant to the Attorney General


Sacramento Insiders Discuss State Policy

These government relations experts will discuss the topics and issues in health policy - and politics - facing California’s legislature. They will share their observations regarding policy discussions on the horizon, and where those discussions are likely to lead California.

Janus Norman: Senior Vice President and Chief Lobbyist, California Medical Association

Kassy Perry: Chief Executive Officer, Perry Communications

Anne McLeod: Senior Vice President, Health Policy & Innovation, California Hospital Association

Angelica Gonzalez: Director, Government Relations, Kaiser Permanente (moderator)


Population Health Strategies that Work

You may be surprised to learn that “population health” is a term that can mean different things to different people. Likewise, the definition of success can vary widely. This session will survey successful population health strategies, drawing lessons for future implementations from the hard work of the recent past.

Lydia Mata: Leader, Population Health Programs, Anthem

Jeff Stocker: Manager, Population Health, Cerner Corporation

Matt Stiefel: Senior Director, Center for Population Health, Kaiser Permanente Care Management Institute


What Does Universal Coverage Look Like in California?

The politics of the moment are creating significant momentum towards some form of universal coverage or care. But, the exact definition of universal coverage - or single payer, or Medicare for all, or whatever - can vary widely depending on where one sits. This panel will try to sort through the confusion to discuss the areas of policy opportunity within the context of a universal care model.

Brianna Lierman: Chief Executive Officer, Local Health Plans of California

Chris Perrone: Director, Improving Access, California Health Care Foundation

Tam Ma: Legal and Policy Director, Heath Access California

Susan Philip: Senior Healthcare Management Consultant, Milliman (moderator)


An Update on the Provider Directory Conversation

Implementation of California’s provider directory statute and rules is taking a series of important steps this spring. This panel will update attendees with the latest in procurement, modeling, and repercussions from one of California’s most consumer-centered innovations in recent years.

Sarah Summer: Senior Director, State Policy & Strategy, Blue Shield of California

Eyal Gurion: Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, Integrated Healthcare Association


A Staff View of Health Policy in the 2018 Legislature

Often, legislative staff and consultants are the most plugged in members of the Sacramento policy community. This panel will feature subject matter experts from committee and caucus staff talking through the policy discussions, tradeoffs, and calendars for the legislature.

Marjorie Swartz: Policy Consultant, Office of President Pro Tempore Toni Atkins

Peter Anderson: Chief Consultant, Office of Policy, Assembly Republican Caucus


Where is the Progress on Behavioral Health Integration?

Behavioral health integration has been a subject of discussion since before the 2015 approval of California’s 1115 waiver. However, progress has been unevenly spread around California’s health care system. This panel will review progress, offer lessons learned, and point to pathways forward for further integration efforts.

Laura Grossmann: AVP, Client Partnerships, West, Beacon Health Options

Margaret Kisliuk: Behavioral Health Administrator, Partnership Health Plan

Brenda Goldstein: Director, Psychosocial Services, LifeLong Medical Care


The Looming Disruption from New Technologies in Healthcare

Technology is already changing the way health care is purchased, how decisions are made, and what consumers have come to expect from the system. Moreover, these tools are helping improve health in ways the traditional care and financing models cannot. This panel will elevate some of the more interesting technologies of 2018 and discuss the disruption that may come with them.

Jenna Tregarthen: Chief Executive Officer, Recovery Record

Neil Solomon, MD: Co-Founder & Chief Medical Officer, MedZed LLC

Dilek Barlow: Director, Wildflower Health

Julia Bernstein: VP, Strategy & Development, Beacon Health Options (moderator)


Measuring the Efficiency of Payer-Provider Arrangements

The range of relationship models between payer and provider is widening, becoming more complex and diverse. How can we know empirically what sort of arrangement is better for patient care and quality outcomes? This panel of experts will discuss some of the findings of a recent study about provider and payment models, and discuss the implications for California health care.

Bill Barcellona: Senior Vice President, America’s Physician Groups

Doloris Yanagihara: VP, Analytics & Performance Information, Integrated Healthcare Association

Richard Scheffler: Chair, Health Economics & Public Policy, UC Berkeley School of Public Health


Policy Leadership: Democrats

Democratic members of the legislature will join this session to discuss their policy priorities and vision for California health care in 2018. Bring your questions to what is always a dynamic, well attended session.

Senator Ricardo Lara: Chair, Senate Appropriations Committee

Assemblymember David Chiu: Chair, Assembly Housing and Community Development Committee

 Assemblymember Ash Kalra: Chair, Assembly Aging & Long Term Care Committee

Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry: Member, Assembly Health Committee 


Integrating the Social Determinants into the Medical Model

Understanding the impact social determinants have on one’s health is now mainstream. Yet, implementing that knowledge into a health care system which is sometimes slow to innovate can be a challenge. These panelists will discuss their experiences, successes and setbacks from working to integrate social determinants into a care model.

Brian Baker: Lead Government Strategist, Cerner Corporation

Vitka Eisen, MSW, EdD: President & Chief Executive Officer, HealthRIGHT 360

Chris Esguerra, MD: Senior Medical Director, Care1st Health Plan


Innovations in Long Term Care Services and Supports

California's population of seniors or persons with disabilities is growing rapidly, placing greater demands on both the health care system and long term services and supports (LTSS) in the community. In addition, the need to access LTSS often leads to individuals "spending down" to become eligible for Medi-Cal, placing an unsustainable demand on the state budget to pay for IHSS and other community based services. This panel of experts will discuss challenges, opportunities and possible short and long term solutions for addressing this growing problem.

Peter Hansel: Executive Director, CalPACE

Lydia Missaelides: Executive Director, California Association of Adult Day Services

Kristina Bas-Hamilton: Legislative Director, UDW/AFSCME Local 3930

Hilary Haycock: Chief Executive Officer, Harbage Consulting (moderator)


Reviewing the Implications of Consolidation in California Healthcare

As national consolidation efforts create implications in California, it’s a good time to discuss the relative benefits and costs of integration, both horizontally and vertically. These experts will review the market and policy impacts of consolidation, and take your questions on real world examples from California today.

Anthony Wright: Executive Director, Health Access California

Scott Coffin: Chief Executive Officer, Alameda Alliance for Health

Richard Scheffler: Chair, Health Economics and Public Policy, UC Berkeley School of Public Health


Lunch Keynote: A Conversation with Assemblymember Rob Bonta

Asm. Rob Bonta is the Assistant Majority Leader in the California Assembly. He sits on the Appropriations and Health Committees, including others.  Bonta has been a primary advocate for universal care and a single payer model in California.  This session will talk through the politics of health policy in the Assembly, and talk through the implications of the 2018 election cycle on health care.

Assemblymember Rob Bonta: Assistant Majority Leader, California Assembly


Lunch Keynote: The Future of California’s Health Care System

There have been a number of shocks to the California health care system from the public sector, ranging from federal policy to anti-trust lawsuits to cease and desist letters from regulators.  This panel will discuss those forces, the health system’s response, and where this will all take California’s health care system in 2018 and beyond.

Priscilla VanderVeer: Deputy Vice President, PhRMA

Don Crane: Chief Executive Officer, America's Physician Groups

Carmela Coyle: Chief Executive Officer, California Hospital Association

Barsam Kasravi, MD: CMO & RVP, California Medicaid Health Plan Anthem Blue Cross


Policy Leadership: Republicans

This panel of Republican legislators will discuss their vision and plan for health policy in the 2018 legislative session. They’ll discuss areas of collaboration with the Democratic majority and areas where, based on principal, Republicans will be in opposition. Bring your questions to this thoughtful, civil dialog on California health policy today.

Senator Joel Anderson: Vice Chair, Senate Standing Committee on Public Safety (invited)

Senator Jim Nielsen: Member, Senate Health Committee (invited)

Assemblymember Marc Steinorth: Member, Assembly Health Committee (invited)

Assemblymember Marie Waldron: Member, Assembly Health Committee (invited)


Opioids: The System-Generated American Epidemic

The development of the opioid epidemic represents a fundamental failure of the American health care system. From over-prescribing to a failure to see the signs of addiction, the history of this problem is pointing to new system-level approaches to pain and care management.

Salina Wong, PharmD: Director, Clinical Pharmacy Program, Blue Shield of California

Kelly Pfeifer, MD: Director, High Value Care, California Health Care Foundation

Nicole Esposito, MD: Assistant Medical Director, Behavioral Health, San Diego County


Unique Hospital-Led Community Partnerships

Hospitals aren’t just for inpatient care anymore. In fact, sometimes they are not about inpatient or even outpatient services at all. These panelists will highlight some of the innovative hospital-led community partnerships taking shape in California that are improving health for residents via unique models of care.

Brian Jensen: Regional Vice President, Hospital Council of Northern & Central California

Chad Augustin: Fire Assistant Chief, City of Sacramento

Barry Ross: Vice President of Health Communities, St. Jude Medical Center


An Honest Conversation on Cost Drivers

If we’re candid, the health care sector still struggles to control costs while delivering high quality, accessible health care services. Why is this still such a challenge? This session will address some of the elephants in the room related to cost trends in health care.

Asher Lisec: Senior Director, State Advocacy, PhRMA

Amy Shin: Chief Executive Officer, Health Plan of San Joaquin

Joe Gifford, MD: SVP, Population Health, Lumeris


The Impact of Federal Health Policy on California

California has fashioned itself as the antithesis of the Trump Administration, responding directly to policies coming out of the White House and Congress. The recent news of adding a citizenship question to the census has real implications for California's federal funding. This session will address the potential impact federal policy will have on California.

Mohit Ghose: Vice President, Government Relations, Beacon Health Options

Colm O'Comartun: Managing Partner, 50 State


Building a Workforce that Meets California's Health Care Needs

Administrators and clinicians who can work across silos, systems and shortfalls in the healthcare sector are in tremendous demand. Yet, the number of newly trained personnel capable of handling the work are few. This session will address some innovative approaches to California’s current and future workforce needs.

Jeffrey Lewis: Chief Executive Officer, Legacy Health Endowment

Patrick Pine: Chief Administrative Officer, Robert F. Kennedy Medical Plan

Sunita Mutha, MD: Director, Healthforce Center, UCSF


Innovative Solutions for Managing Homelessness

For all of the work and resources, homelessness is getting worse in California, not better. With housing insecurity often comes mental health issues, and sometimes chemical dependency. This session will discuss the challenges of solving homelessness across the range of health and housing ecosystems in California.

Keri Thomas: Vice President, External Affairs, Sutter Health

Sharon Rapport: Associate Director, California Policy, Corporation for Supportive Housing

Josh Bamberger, MD: Chief Medical Consultant, Mercy Housing

Lisa Chan-Sawin: Principal, Transform Health (moderator)


An Update on Value Based Payment Strategies

Value based payments appear to be increasing in California as provider groups develop new relationships with payers. The spread of infrastructure and technology are also playing key roles in moving California health care from volume to value. This panel will discuss the latest trends in VBP and what that work means for the future of care financing.

Sue Dietz: Vice President, Caravan Health

Joel Gray: Senior Director, Anthem Blue Cross - Medicaid


Afternoon Keynote: The Vision for DHCS and Medi-Cal in 2018 and Beyond

Medi-Cal will continue to be one of the most catalytic forces for innovation in California’s health care system in 2018 and the years which follow.  With the 1115 waiver now becoming fully implemented, and a massive reprocurement on the horizon, how will the lessons learned from two terms under Gov. Brown continue to shape Medi-Cal well into the next four years?  What issues are teed up for discussion? Where are opportunities for progress strongest? This session closes out our conference with a conversation with one of California’s most important health care leaders.

Jennifer Kent: Director, California Dept. of Health Care Services


Hosted Networking Reception

Please join us following the Afternoon Keynote for a hosted networking reception with light hors d’oeuvres and a full bar, generously sponsored by WestPac Wealth Partners.