5 Things Michigan: Cost drivers, Capitol insiders, Integrating the social determinants of health

We are two weeks out from our 2021 Michigan State of Reform Health Policy Conference coming up on May 27th. So, we’re putting the finishing touches on our agenda, and confirming the last of our more than 60 speakers!

It’s going to be an amazing event, and we are very excited to listen in on some of the discussions we’ve curated for you. So, we wanted to feature some of those for you here. I think it’s an impressive line up that I hope you’ll get a lot out of.





With help from Emily Boerger

1. Keynote with US Sen. Debbie Stabenow

One keynote we are excited to announce today is that of US Senator Debbie Stabenow. She will be with us to talk through her work on health reform, the politics of the 117th Congress, and the work to date with the Biden administration. Stabenow sits on the powerful Senate Finance Committee which oversees Medicare, Medicaid, and a range of important health care issues.

Sen. Stabenow will bring her years of experience working on health reform, at both the state and federal level, to the conversation with our audience. Bring your questions, as well as your own insights, to this unique opportunity and conversation.

2. Capitol insiders discuss health policy

One of the best sessions every year at State of Reform is our panel with some of the most respected advocates and government relations professionals in the business. At the State of Reform Conference in two weeks, these capitol insiders will discuss state health policy, talk through the 2021 session so far, and highlight the big questions which are teed up.

Gilda Jacobs, President & CEO of the Michigan League for Public Policy, and Phillip Bergquist, Health Center Operations Officer at the Michigan Primary Care Association, will offer their perspectives on this panel. They’ll be joined by Dominick Pallone, Executive Director of the Michigan Association of Health Plans, and Christin Nohner, Senior Government Affairs Consultant at RWC Advocacy.

3. Addressing racial disparities

The variation in access and outcomes of health care services during the pandemic has created a moral imperative to do better. These leaders on our “Addressing racial disparities in health outcomes” panel will talk through how we can do better as a society, do better as a sector, and do better as professionals to address the stark variation in outcomes in US health care based on race.

Joining this panel will be Dr. Renée Branch Canady, CEO of the Michigan Public Health Institute, Debbie Edokpolo, MSW, Director of Health Equity and Social Justice at the Michigan Primary Care Association, and Dr. Debra Furr-Holden, C.S. Mott Endowed Professor of Public Health at Michigan State University. It’s a unique set of perspectives on a topic that we probably need to be spending more time on together.

4. An honest conversation about cost drivers

Of cost, quality, and access, it would appear that less has been done to substantively address system-level cost issues than the other areas. So, this panel at the 2021 Michigan State of Reform Health Policy Conference will bring panelists’ insights and approaches to a lively discussion focused around a common interest to bend the cost curve of health care.

This panel will feature Matt Gallivan, Director of State and Federal Regulatory Affairs at 3M HIS, Dr. Mark Fendrick, Director of the V-BID Center at the University of Michigan, and Melissa Reitz, Principal at RWC Advocacy.

5. A sustainable, integrated approach to SDOH

Social determinants are important to one’s health status, but it’s not entirely clear how to utilize that knowledge in a way that is sustainable to health care organizations and individuals. How can we capture the savings from interventions into the social determinants so that the care model is sustainable? Our “A sustainable, integrated approach to social determinants” panel will discuss where these conversations are going and what we’re learning from new approaches to care.

We’ll hear from Tim Pletcher, Executive Director of the Michigan Health Information Network Shared Services, Dr. Faiyaz Syed, Chief Medical Officer at the Michigan Primary Care Association, and Dr. Roshanak Mehdipanah, Assistant Professor of Health Behavior & Health Education at the University of Michigan.