Detailed Agenda

Our 2021 Maryland State of Reform Health Policy Conference Detailed Agenda is a list of over 70 speakers and experts from across the spectrum of care.

The agenda and speaker list are driven by input from our Convening Panel of leaders in Maryland health care and we’re looking forward to a great event on May 13th. If you’re not already registered, you can do so here.

The heading colors correspond to track colors on our Topical Agenda to help you organize your day.

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

Please note that all session times are in EDT!


9:00 - 9:15

Welcome & Introductions

DJ Wilson, Host of State of Reform, will kick off the day with comments framing the conference agenda, and the role of State of Reform hopes to play in this challenging era of health policy and politics. He will orient us to the conference, including a run down of how best to utilize the unique tools of the virtual platform.

DJ Wilson: Host, State of Reform

9:15 - 9:50

Morning Keynote: Conversation with Sen. Chris Van Hollen

In this morning plenary, we'll hear from Maryland's US Senator Chris Van Hollen. He will update us on his work to continue to support Maryland's economic recovery and the policy conversations taking place in the Budget committee. He will also discuss his work as Chair of the Foreign Relations Subcommittee with jurisdiction on global health policy. Bring your questions to this interactive conversation. 

Sen. Chris Van Hollen: Member, United States Senate

10:00 - 10:50

Capitol insiders review the 2021 session

In what is always a popular session, this panel of government relations professionals will dish on the 2021 legislature, from public hearings to behind the scenes conversations. They'll also talk through the conversations yet to come, and what work will be teed up during the interim period. 

Nicole Stallings: Senior Vice President, Government Affairs & Policy, Maryland Hospital Association

Vinny DeMarco: President, Maryland Citizens Health Initiative

Moira Cyphers: Partner, Compass Advocacy

10:00 - 10:50

The state of local health departments after a year of COVID

After a year of immense strain, this panel will talk through how well local public health jurisdictions are faring. The panelists will talk through the lessons from the last year, and how Maryland can learn from the work and the outcomes employed in this pandemic. 

Gregory Branch, MD: Director, Dept. of Health and Human Services, Baltimore County 

Raimee Eck: Past President, Maryland Public Health Association

Jennifer White: Senior Policy and Community Engagement Officer, The Horizon Foundation 

Nilesh Kalyanaraman, MD: Health Officer, Anne Arundel County Health Department

10:00 - 10:50

Opportunities to maximize the waiver model in Maryland

Maryland's waiver model of care is well regarded by a range of stakeholders, but that doesn't mean there isn't still work left to do. This session will talk through how best to continue to improve on Maryland's model of care, and where efforts at system improvement will yield the best returns. 

Bob Atlas: Chief Executive Officer, Maryland Hospital Association

Maria Tildon: Executive Vice President, Public Policy & Government Affairs, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield

Joe DeMattos: Chief Executive Officer, Health Facilities Association of Maryland 

Joshua Sharfstein, MD: Vice Dean for Public Health Practice and Commuity Engagement, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

10:00 - 10:50

Addressing maternal mortality rates in Maryland

One area of focus for system improvement is narrowing the variation in outcomes during complex deliveries. The data remains clear that maternal mortality ranges widley based on race and ethnicity. This session will discuss the work to measure and address this variation, and talk through the implications of this work for the broader system. 

Sen. Mary Beth Carozza: Member, Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee

Traci Kodeck: Chief Executive Officer, HealthCare Access Maryland 

Shelly Choo, MD: Director, Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Maryland Dept. of Health 

Lara Wilson: Director, Rural Health Care Transformation, University of Maryland Shore Regional Health at Chestertown

11:00 -11:50

Policy Leadership: Republicans

This panel of some of Maryland's most important and impactful Repulican legislators will review the work of the legislative session. They will talk through the scope of work ahead during the interim period, and what policy conversations are likely to lay ahead on health policy in Maryland. 

Del. Sid Saab: Deputy Minority Whip, Maryland House of Delegates 

Del. Susan Krebs: Member, House Health & Government Operations Committee 

Del. Brian Chisholm: Member, House Health & Government Operations Committee 

11:00 -11:50

The pandemic, behavioral health, and the system response

It is clear that this pandemic has weighed heavily on the mental health of individuals and the behavioral health of populations and their communities. So, how has the system responded to meet this growing need? And, what does that tell us about the work left to improve our system of care? This session will reflect on a tough year, and look forward with hope about the work to come. 

Kate Farinholt: Executive Director, National Alliance on Mental Illness Maryland 

Adrienne Breidenstine: Vice President of Policy and Communications, Behavioral Health System of Baltimore

Aliya Jones, MD: Deputy Secretary for Behavioral Health, Maryland Dept. of Health 

John Miller: Executive Director, MidAtlantic Business Group on Health

11:00 -11:50

Regulations & reimbursment: Is telehealth here to stay?

The success of telehealth this last year is clear. While most seem to agree that some version of telehealth is here to stay, state and federal health policy are still critical to support continued innovation. THese panelists will draw upon their own experiences and their work as advocates and practitioners to highlight key obstacles and opportunities ahead. 

Jeff Richardson: Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Sheppard Pratt Community Services 

Helen Hughes: Assistant Medical Director, Office of Telemedicine, Johns Hopkins Medicine

Dennis Truong, MD: Regional Telemedicine/Mobility Director, Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group 

Charles Doring, DDS: Chair, Legislative Affairs Committee, Maryland State Dental Association

11:00 -11:50

Where innovation in tech is taking the healthcare system

It's clear that technology will continue to disrupt health care, and with luck, leave the sector much improved. From tele-health to wearables, from AI to population health, this session will discuss how technology is reshaping the way care is delivered, and how quality is measured.

Sam Malhotra: Chief Executive Officer, The Center for THINK Strategies

David Horrocks: President & Chief Executive Officer, CRISP 

Subi Muniasamy: Chief Technology Officer, MD THINK 

David Lashar: Partner, Keen360

12:00 - 12:50

Policy Leadership: Democrats

This panel of Democratic legislators will talk through the highs and lows of the legislative session, and offer their thoughts on the work ahead for Maryland health policy. Bring your questions to what is always an interactive and wide-ranging conversation with some of Maryland's most thoughtful policy makers. 

Sen. Paul Pinsky: Chair, Senate Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee 

Sen. Brian Feldman: Vice Chair, Senate Finance Committee

Sen. Malcolm Augustine: Member, Joint Committee on Behavioral Health and Opioid Use Disorders 

Del. Robbyn Lewis: Member, House Health and Government Operations Committee 

12:00 - 12:50

An update from the Maryland Dept. of Health

This session will feature news from the Department of Health as Jinlene Chan, Acting Deputy Secretary of Health, updates attendees on the long list of work underway at the DOH. From responding to the epidemic, to supporting primary care, this session will review initiatives that are about to launch, as well as those that are currently showing results. 

Jinlene Chan, MD: Deputy Secretary of Public Health, Maryland Department of Health

12:00 - 12:50

What a world of "chronic COVID" looks like for delivery & financing

It is increasingly clear that COVID will remain an endemic disease in America much like influenza or HIV. So, what does that mean for the future of care delivery and financing if seasonal surges of COVID hit the system along with the flu each year? This session will talk through how health care may be impacted by this "new normal."

Salliann Alborn: Chief Executive Officer, Maryland Community Health System 

Patrick Mutch: Chief Executive Officer, Chase Brexton Health Care 

David Baker, DrPH: Executive Director, Population Health, LifeBridge Health

James Case: Managing Director, KPMG

12:00 - 12:50

Re-thinking our approach to workforce development

The pandemic has shined a light on the need for more access to health care providers, as well as the need to think differently about what we ask our workforce to do. From increased sensitivity to provider burnout, to a greater focus on team-based care, this session will discuss strategies underway to build a workforce ready for the needs of the community in the years ahead. 

Sen. Addie Eckardt: Member, Senate Budget & Taxation Committee 

Deborah Rowe: Vice President, Nursing Workforce Development, Genesis

Howard Haft, MD: Executive Director, Maryland Primary Care Program 

Lisa Rawlings: Director, Workforce Initiatives & Job Readiness, Office of Community Engagement, University of Maryland Baltimore

1:00 - 1:50

Update on federal health policy

With a new federal administration already making major strides on health policy, and with Congress primed to move even further on reform this summer, federal health policy is as dynamic now as it has been since the passage of the ACA. This session will hear from folks at work on the next wave of federal policy making in the Biden Administration and 117th Congress. 

Kevin Lindamood: President & Chief Executive Officer, Health care for the Homeless 

Cybele Bjorklund: Vice President, Federal Strategy, Johns Hopkins University and Johns Hopkins Medicine

Lauren Jee: Senior Health Policy Council, Office of Senator Ben Cardin 

Scott Nelson: Partner, K&L Gates 

1:00 - 1:50

How to support and improve Maryland's long term care system

A year of a pandemic has shined a light on the importance of Maryland's long term care system. It's also elevated the need to refine and improve a system on which so many of our family members and community will depend. This session will talk through the emerging needs, acute challenges, and unique opportunities that Maryland's long term care system must grapple with. 

Del. Ariana Kelly: Chair, Health Occupations & Long-Term Care Subcommittee, House Health and Government Operations Committee

Cynthia Kelleher: President & Chief Executive Officer, University of Maryland Rehabilitation & Orthopedic Institute

Mike Jacobs: Vice President, Government Affairs, Fundamental HealthCare 

1:00 - 1:50

Managing affordability and cost in Maryland health care

Thousands of professionals in Maryland are hard at work thinking through strategies to mitigate upward pressure in health care costs. But, as a state community, are we making enough progress? This session will discuss the efforts to drive affordability at the system-level of Maryland's health care sector, and what that means for both consumers and health care organizations. 

Stacia Cohen: Executive Vice President, Health Services, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield

Diane Stollenwerk: Chief Executive Officer, StollenWerks

Andrew York: Executive Director, Maryland Prescription Drug Affordability Board

Johanna Fabian-Marks: Director of Policy and Plan Management, Maryland Health Benefit Exchange

1:00 - 1:50

Racism as a public health issue

One characteristic of the pandemic is the emerging and multi-cultural consensus that racism remains an unresolved stain on American society. The impacts of racism impact life expectancy, health outcomes, and quality of life, with a level of chronic stress for people of color that can create structural health challenges. This session will discuss the data that underpins racism's impact on health, and how the health care sector can better deal with this ongoing issue. 

Sen. Mary Washington: Senate Chair, Joint Committee on Children, Youth, and Families 

Nicole Rochester, MD: Chief Executive Officer, Your GPS Doc

Michelle Gourdine, MD: Interim Chief Medical Officer, University of Maryland Medical Center 

Rev. Dr. Sandra Conner: Pastor, Shephard's Heart Missionary Baptist Church 

2:00 - 2:50

Keynote: A conversation on health equity in Maryland

After a day of conversations at the intersection of health care and public policy, State of Reform concludes with a unique session blending perspectives from across Maryland's health and public policy community on the important topic of improving health equity in the state. We'll review the data on outcomes and the experience from a year of a pandemic, and discuss what that means for the road ahead as Maryland continues it's work at health system improvement. 

Del. Joseline Peña-Melnyk: Vice Chair, House Health and Government Operations Committee

Brian Pieninck: Chief Executive Officer, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield

Letitia Dzirasa: Commissioner, Baltimore City Health Dept. 

Mohan Suntha, MD: President & Chief Executive Officer, University of Maryland Medical System