Detailed Agenda

Our 2021 Northern California State of Reform Health Policy Conference Detailed Agenda is a list of almost 60 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 California health care and we’re looking forward to a great event on April 22nd. 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!


8:00 - 8:10

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 

8:10 - 8:50

Morning Keynote: One on One Conversations

Our morning program will feature one on one conversations with some of California's most prominent health care leaders. We'll ask them forward looking questions hoping to leverage their experience to better understand the road ahead. 

Asm. Jim Wood: Chair, Assembly Committee on Health 

Kimberley Goode: Senior Vice President, External Affairs, Blue Shield of California 

9:00 - 9:50

Capitol Insiders discuss the 2021 session

In what is always a popular session, this panel of government relations professionals will dish on what the most important and interesting stories are to watch in the 2021 session. Bring your questions, as well as your own insights, to a session that is particularly interactive and forward thinking. 

Angelica Gonzalez: Director, Government Relations, Kaiser Permanente

Kassy Perry: President & Chief Executive Officer, Perry Communications

Jodi Hicks: Chief Executive Officer, Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California 

9:00 - 9:50

Telehealth policy in a post-COVID world

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

Mohit Ghose: Government Relations, Anthem Inc. 

Albert Chan, MD: Vice President, Chief of Digital Patient Experience, Sutter Health

Alinea Stevens, MD: Medical Director, Chapa-De Indian Health 

9:00 - 9:50

Leveraging community in care delivery & management

We're learning more and more about the role and importance of one's community on an individual's health status. This panel will discuss the intersection between the delivery system and community, and the lessons learned from work to connect the two. 

Verne Brizendine: Chief Executive Officer, Aetna Better Health of California

Cindy Selmi: Executive Director, Health Outreach Partners

Ben Honda: Customer Success Account Executive, Aunt Bertha 

9:00 - 9:50

Venture capital's view of opportunities in health care

It's clear well-funded investors see opportunities in health care. But it's not always clear to the health care sector if that means the sector is partner or prey. This panel will help bridge the cultures of the two worlds, and talk through where there may be alignment and where disruption lies ahead. 

Josh Golomb: Chief Executive Officer, Hazel Health

Rachel Mertnsmeyer: Chief Executive Officer & Founder, RexPay

Jon Larson, MD: President, GoodRX Care Provider Network

Dan Gebremedhin, MD: Partner, Flare Capital Partners 

Greg Buchert: Chief Executive Officer, GSB Health Management Solutions (Moderator) 

10:00 - 10:50

Update on federal health policy

With a new federal administration, and health care reform primed as a key issue in the 117th Congress, this session will hear from policy advocates and congressional staffers that are at work trying to shape the next wave of federal policy making on the road ahead in 2021. Bring your questions to get a better understanding of what is to come in the next Congress. 

Jon Blum: Vice President and Managing Principal, Medicare, Health Management Associates 

Christina McCauley: Health Policy Advisor, The Office of Congresswoman Doris Matsui

Paul Dioguardi: Senior Vice President, Forbes Tate

10:00 - 10:50

Outcomes and inconsistencies in health equity

From vaccine distribution to access to health care services, there continues to be variation in health outcomes based on race, gender and economic status. So, what are the moral implications of this bitter truth? How can our system do better by our neighbors and community members? Be prepared to engage in a dynamic discussion on how we as a health care community can do better. 

Demetria Malloy, MD: Regional Vice President & Medical Director, Anthem National Accounts 

Eve Gelb: Senior Vice President, Member and Community Health, SCAN Health Plan 

Kristen Azar: Scientific Medical Director, Sutter Health Institute for Advancing Health Equity

Michael Anderson-Nathe: Principal, Health Management Associates (Moderator)

10:00 - 10:50

COVID, substance abuse and our mental health

The pandemic has wreaked havoc on our lives, increasing the need for mental health support to manage increased anxiety and depression. Some have begun to struggle with addiction, making things worse across a range of data points. This session will discuss the impacts of a year of COVID on our mental health and look ahead to how the system -- and our society -- will respond. 

Aimee Moulin, MD: Director, CA Bridge 

Matt Wong, MD: Medical Director, Managed Health Network by Health Net

Ryan Quist: Behavioral Health Services Director, Sacramento County Department of Health Services 

10:00 - 10:50

Measuring the impact of provider consolidation and market power

Determining the impact of provider consolidation continues to be an ongoing conversation both at the state and federal level. This session will explore the cost/benefit questions related to the subject, and what California policy makers and health care leaders have learned for more than a decade of catalyzed consolidation.

Bill Kramer: Executive Director of Health Policy, The Purchaser Business Group on Health

Katie Gudiksen, PhD: Senior Health Policy Researcher, The Source, UC Hastings College of Law

Chris Whaley, PhD: Policy Researcher, RAND Corporation

11:00 -11:50

Policy leadership: Democrats

This breakout session will feature some of California's most interesting health policy makers from the more progressive side of the asile. Bring your questions to what is always an interactive and informative panel on the future of health policy in California.

Sen. Scott Wiener: Chair, Senate Housing Committee

Asm. Cecilia Aguiar-Curry: Member, Assembly Committee on Health

11:00 -11:50

Building an anti-racist health system

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. These thought leaders will discuss how we intentionally create or re-create a more equitable and just health system. Your lived experiences are welcome and encouraged in this open conversation.

Don Garcia, MD: Chief Medical Officer, Clinica Romero 

Rhonda Smith: Executive Director, California Black Health Network

James Cruz, MD: Senior Medical Director, Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan

Lisa Chan-Sawin: Chief Executive Officer, Transform Health LLC. (Moderator)

11:00 -11:50

Re-thinking the behavioral health work force

The pandemic has shone a light on the need for more access to behavioral health services, as well as the need to think differently about how those services are delivered. So, how can we leverage telehealth, a team based approach to care, and education incentives to increase provider access? We'll grapple with these challenges and look ahead to how best to restructure the workforce of the future. 

Sean Benedict, PsyD: Director of Integrated Behavioral Health & Co-Occuring Continuum, Well Space Health

Jessica Brown: Director, Mental Health Services Act, San Francisco Department of Public Health

Kimberly Mayer, MSSW: Director, California Social Work Education Center, UC Berkeley School of Social Welfare 

11:00 -11:50

Have we made meaningful progress on payment reform?

California has a strong history of being a national leader in implementing value based care arrangements. But, what have we learned, and is it enough to drive meaningful change in a system that seems to have become increasingly difficult to reform? These thought leaders will bring varying viewpoints to the topic, and offer insights about what we might expect moving forward. 

Abbie Totten: President, California Plan, Molina Healthcare

Sarah Summer: Chief Executive Officer, California Physician Services Organization 

Joe Gifford, MD: Senior Vice President, Delivery System Population Health, Lumeris

Ryan Witz: Vice President, Healthcare Finance Initiatives, California Hospital Association 

Dawn Weimar: Program Manager, 3M HIS (Moderator)

12:00 - 12:50

Policy Leadership: Republicans

These Republican legislators will join State of Reform to update you on their hopes and visions for the complicated and busy 2021 legislative session. Plan for strong audience engagement and a range of questions in what is always a highly interactive and candid discussion about the policy choices ahead. 

Sen. Shannon Grove: Member, Senate Health Committee

Asm. Marie Waldron: Minority Leader, California State Assembly

Asm. Devon Mathis: Member, Assembly Budget Subcommittee on Health and Human Services

12:00 - 12:50

Update from DHCS & CalAIM in 2021

This session will feature senior figures from the Department of Health Care Services as they update attendees on the initiatives and work underway at the agency. This session gives you an opportunity for meaningful engagement with some of the leading figures driving the conversation in Medi-Cal and California health policy.

Bambi Cisneros: Assistant Deputy Director, Health Care Delivery Systems, Department of Health Care Services

Mike Dutra: Chief of the Policy, Utilization & External Relations Branch, Department of Health Care Services 

Aaron Toyama: Senior Advisor, Department of Health Care Services 

12:00 - 12:50

Next Steps in Connecting Housing and Health

It is clear that it's extremely difficult to be healthy if you're worried about where you might rest your head at night. At the safety net, this becomes even more important as folks can sometimes live on the precipice of housing insecurity. This session will talk through the connection between housing and health, and what policy discussions that realization might engender in California and nationally.

Keli Savage: Head of Impact Investment Strategy, Aetna 

Jenny Sullivan: Director, Housing and Health Integration, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

Lisa Hershey: Executive Director, Housing California 

12:00 - 12:50

"Chronic COVID" and the financial implications of the pandemic

We talk about how COVID has changed us as individuals, but what does it mean for the financial health of the health care community? Has the perceived 'delay in care' and the unknown costs for 'long haulers' created liabilities that will linger for years? Will annual endemic surges of COVID in our hospitals overwhelm us year in and year out? This group will talk these questions through and look ahead to how we might best respond to this "new normal."

James Cruz, MD: Senior Medical Director, Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan 

Mike Witte, MD: Chief Medical Officer, California Primary Care Association

Kimberly MacPherson, MPH, MBA: Executive Director of Health Management, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley

1:00 - 1:50

Afternoon Keynote: A review of California utilization and pricing data during COVID

Robin Gelburd leads FAIR Health, an independent national nonprofit that collects data for and manages the nation's largest database of privately billed health insurance claims. During this keynote, Gelburd will share data on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on pricing and utilization trends in California. FAIR Health is known for its committment to transparency and for making actionable data available in innovative ways to all stakeholders in the health care community.

Robin Gelburd: President, Fair Health