Detailed Agenda Day 1

Our 2021 Washington State of Reform Health Policy Conference Detailed Agenda is a list of almost 90 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 Washington health care and we’re looking forward to a great event on January 6th and 7th. 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!



Welcome & Introduction

This opening session will kick off the day with comments framing the conference agenda, and the role State of Reform hopes to play in this challenging era of health policy and politics.

DJ Wilson: Host, State of Reform

8:20- 8:50

Keynote: Projecting the future of COVID

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation is one of the country's leading outlets for COVID projections and epidemiological research. In this presentation by the Director of IHME at the University of Washington, we will review the data and trends related to the disease and look ahead to what vaccines and additional policy measures might hold for us in 2021.

Christopher Murray, MD: Director, Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation


Networking: Health Care Reform with DJ Wilson, Host of State of Reform

Our hallway conversations are looking different this year than they have in the past, but we’re not letting these unprecedented times stop us. After the morning keynote, join this virtual networking session with DJ Wilson to discuss the unique challenges and opportunities surrounding health care reform in Washington state.

DJ Wilson: Host, State of Reform

9:00- 9:50

Policy leadership: Democrats

This panel includes some of the most important Democratic legislators in Washington State health policy. They will gather to discuss their observations on health and fiscal policy in the legislative session ahead and discuss how the pandemic will impact the work and logsitcis of the legislature ahead. Bring your questions to what is always a popular session.

Sen. Annette Cleveland: Chair, Senate Health and Long Term Care Committee

Rep. Lauren Davis: Member, House Health Care and Wellness Committee

Rep. Steve Tharinger: Member, House Health Care and Wellness Committee

9:00- 9:50

Building connections between health care and public health

The pandemic has laid bare a range of inadequacies in our health system, including the lack of meaningful coordination between public health and the delivery system. This session will discuss how the lessons from COVID are impacting the gap between these silos and how a new model of integration is developing.

Jennifer Graves, RN: Vice President, Quality and Safety, Chief Nursing Officer, Kaiser Permanente

Patty Hayes: Director, Public Health - Seattle King County 

James Wallace, MD: Chief Health Officer, Family Health Centers

9:00- 9:50

Update from HCA

In what is always a well attended session, leaders from the Washington State Health Care Authority will join State of Reform to highlight the agency's work ahead in 2021. This will include a deep dive on policy initiatives ahead both in the legislative session and in regulatory affairs. 

Sue Birch: Director, Washington State Health Care Authority

Maryanne Lindeblad: Medicaid Director, Washington State Health Care Authority

David Iseminger: Director, Employees and Retirees Benefits Division, Washington State Health Care Authority

Mich'l Needham: Chief Policy Officer, Policy Division, Washington State Health Care Authority

9:00- 9:50

Building a more equitable health care system

If the principle that 'separate is never equal' holds in other parts of our American society, why is a fractured, segregated and inequitable system in American health care still acceptable? This session will discuss the vision for a more equitable health care system, and what will be needed from market executives and policy leaders to bring the vision to reality.  

Rep. Paul Harris: Caucus Chair, House Republican Caucus

Leanne Berge: Chief Executive Officer, Community Health Plan of Washington

Aaron Katz: Retired Principal Lecturer, Health Services, University of Washington


Sponsored Session: A regional approach to health equity

Washington’s nine Accountable Communities of Health (ACHs) have emerged as independent leaders in transforming the health of communities across the state. The ACHs take a regional approach to integrating physical and behavioral health, rewarding health outcomes, addressing the needs of seniors, and improving health equity. This sponsored session from Regence BlueShield will explore the emerging role of ACHs in transforming health care across all parts of the state (rural and urban, Eastern and Western Washington).

Diana Bianco: Principal, Artemis Consulting; Consultant, ACH Statewide Network

Peggy Maguire: Senior Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility and Palliative Care, Cambia Health Solutions; President, Cambia Health Foundation

Liz Baxter: Chief Executive Officer, North Sound ACH


Networking: Health Policy with Bob Crittenden, MD

Prepare to share your insights, and your contact information, when you come to this health policy networking session led by Bob Crittenden, MD.

Bob Crittenden, ND: Former Senior Health Policy Advisor, Office of Gov. Jay Inslee


Policy leadership: Republicans

These Republican legislators will join State of Reform to update you on their hopes and visions for what will be a unique and historic legislative session. Plan for strong audience engagement and a range of questions from the audience in what is always a highly interactive and candid conversation about the policy conversations ahead. 

Sen. Keith Wagoner: Ranking Member, Senate Behavioral Health Subcommittee to Health and Long Term Care

Sen. Ron Muzzall: Ranking Member, Senate Health and Long Term Care Committee

Rep. Joe Schmick: Ranking Minority Member, House Health Care and Wellness Committee


Scaling the best innovations from the pandemic

A range of innovations have been tested and tried during this pandemic. Some of them have had modest results. Some have been transformational. But what will stick around? What should we keep as we move into the post-COVID space? This session will discuss the possibilities and the promise borne from a hard-earned education in this pandemic.

Sean Farley: Administrative Director, Virginia Mason Medical Center

Usha Sankrithi, MD: Senior Medical Director, Coordinated Care

Craig Eagle: Vice President, US Oncology Medical Affairs, Genentech


What could building a universal system look like?

With the work of the Universal Health Care Work Group leading to a conversation in the legislature this year, where might we expect the conversation about universal to lead in the session ahead? If there is increasing support for a system of universal coverage, how does that vision become reality within the complex nature of health politics today? This session will discuss these questions and point towards possible pathways forward.  

Rep. Nicole Macri: Vice Chair, House Healthcare and Wellness Committee

Lynette Vehrs: President, Washington State Nurses Association

Vicki Lowe: Executive Director, American Indian Health Commission for Washington State

Bevin McLeod: Executive Director, Alliance for a Healthy Washington


Closer integration of long term care and the health care system

COVID has further highlighted the importance of close coordination between our long term and post-acute care settings, and the health care delivery system that often generates their patient load. So, how successful is that coordination, and what can be done to further catalyze it? This session will discuss how these systems of care are moving closer together, and how both market actors and policy makers can support further alignment. 

Lauri St. Ours: Executive Vice President for Government Relations, Washington Health Care Association

Abby Solomon: Executive Director, SEIU 775 Health Benefits Group

Lynn Kimball: Executive Director, Aging and Long-Term Care of Eastern Washington


Sponsored Session: Triple Aim: Genentech's Vision & Perspective on Current Events

Genentech aims to partner across the healthcare continuum to help deliver ongoing improvement in patient health outcomes while lowering healthcare costs.

Gina Noh: Healthcare Market Executive Director (Seattle/Washington), Genentech

Bill Ames: Healthcare Market Executive Director (Eastern Washington), Genentech

Tim Layton: State Government Affairs (Pacific Northwest), Genentech

David Barhoum: Healthcare Market Director (Pacific Northwest), Genentech

Kyle Downey: Medical Affairs Executive Director (Seattle/Washington), Genentech


Networking: Primary Care with Shawn West, MD, CMO of Embright

Join this virtual networking session to connect with new and old friends while also learning more about Shawn West, MD and what Embright is doing for the Primary Care world.

Shawn West, MD: Chief Medical Officer, Embright Health

11:00- 11:50

What is the status of our mental health?

This is a dark winter, indeed. And, our community's mental health is struggling with it, just as has been expected. But that doesn't mean we are powerless, either as individuals or as a system, to address these challenges and support the mental health of our communities. This session will talk through the strategies in place and the work underway to improve mental health in Washington State.

Sen. Manka Dhingra: Chair, Senate Behavioral Health Subcommittee to Health and Long Term Care

Sasha Waring, MD: Medical Director, Molina Healthcare

Jim Polo, MD: Executive Medical Director, Regence BlueShield

Tom Sebastian: Chief Executive Officer, Compass Health

11:00- 11:50

Capitol insiders talk through the next session

In what is a cornerstone session at State of Reform, these advocates and government relations professionals will discuss what they see coming for health policy in the legislative session ahead. They will update you on the conversations taking place among policy makers well before the lights of the cameras come up in the next session. Bring your questions to what is always an informative and enlightening session.  

Lauren Baba: Deputy Director, Government Relations, University of Washington Medicine

Erica Hallock: Government Relations Consultant, Hallock Consulting

Katie Kolan: Partner, Leonard & Kolan

Amber Ulvenes: Consultant, Ulvenes Consulting

11:00- 11:50

The financial implications of repealing the ACA

Anyone that tells they know what the Supreme Court is going to do with the ACA lawsuit, California v. Texas, was probably selling encyclopedias last week. Few foresaw the nuanced decision by John Roberts in NFIB v. Sebelius, or the careful but limited affirmation in King v. Burwell. So, it is sober-minded to plan for a wide range of possible options out of a decision in June, 2021. This session will review some of those possibilites and talk about how best to plan for an uncertain road ahead. 

Joan Altman, JD: Director, Government Affairs and Strategic Partnerships, Washington Health Benefit Exchange

Jane Beyer: Senior Health Policy Advisor, Office of the Insurance Commissioner

Billy Wynne: Principal, Wynne Group

11:00- 11:50

Digital health and the approach to system reform

Often, the leaders working in the digital health space have a fundamentally different view of the challenges, culture, and value offerings of a slow-to-change health care system. This session will elevate some of that thinking and offer some insight into how tech companies are thinking about transforming what they see as an opportunity-rich environment in the sector. 

Swatee Surve: Chief Executive Officer, LiteSprite

Rick Rubin: Chief Executive Officer, OneHealthPort

Melanie Curtice: Deputy General Counsel, 98point6


Sponsored Session: Clinical and Whole Person Health at the YMCA of Greater Seattle

Let new professional relationships blossom as Sally Sundar leads the discussion on health outcomes in the community and what the YMCA is doing to make a difference in people's lives.

Jeff Rainey: Senior Vice President and Chief Health and Social Services Officer, YMCA of Greater Seattle

Sally Sundar: Program Executive, Health Integration & Transformation, YMCA of Greater Seattle

12:00- 12:50

Afternoon Keynote: Highlights from a tough year

This keynote session will bring you conversations with some of the more leaders in the health care and health policy space that we’ve come across in 2020. We’ll have brief conversations with each of them, gleaning the most important lessons and insights from their experience in health care, including what gives them hope for the year ahead in 2021.

Tracy Foo, MD: Vaccines Medical Director, WA, OR, AK, Pfizer

Scott Miscovich, MD: President & Chief Executive Officer, Premier Medical Group

Bracken Killpack: Executive Director, Washington State Dental Association