GAO makes MACPAC appointments and reappointments

WASHINGTON, DC (May 2, 2022) – Gene L. Dodaro, United States Comptroller General and head of the US Government Accountability Office (GAO), today announced the appointment of four new members to the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission ( MACPAC). He also re-elected two members.

“MACPAC is an important source of information and advice about Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP),” Dodaro said. “Again, a number of distinguished individuals have expressed their interest in becoming a member of the Commission and I am delighted to announce today’s four appointments and two reappointments.”

The newly appointed members are Sonja L. Bjork, Jennifer L. Gerstorff, Angelo P. Giardino and Rhonda M. Medows. Her term of office expires in April 2025. In addition, current members Tricia Brooks and Dennis Heaphy have been reappointed to new terms also expiring in April 2025.

The Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 established MACPAC to review Medicaid and CHIP access and payment policies and to advise Congress on issues affecting Medicaid and CHIP. The law directs the Comptroller General to appoint members of MACPAC. Short biographies of the new commission members and those reappointed follow.

New commission members:

Sonja L. Bjork, JD, is Chief Operating Officer of Partnership HealthPlan of California (PHC), a nonprofit, Medicaid-administered, community-based care plan. PHC provides medical care to 635,000 members in 14 Northern California counties. During her tenure at PHC, she has overseen multiple performance implementations and the expansion of the service area of ​​the plan. Ms. Bjork was a member of the executive team and led the plan’s $280 million strategic investment in the health plan reserves to address the social determinants of health. These included medical rest breaks, affordable housing, and treatment options for addictions. Before joining PHC, Ms. Bjork worked as a disability advocate, representing youth in the child welfare system. Ms. Björk received her Juris Doctorate from the UC Berkeley School of Law.

Jennifer L. Gerstorff, FSA, MAAA, is a senior and consulting actuary in Milliman’s Seattle office. Since joining the firm in 2006, she has served as a senior actuary for several state Medicaid agencies. In addition to supporting government agencies through her advisory work, Ms. Gerstorff is an active volunteer on the Society of Actuaries and American Academy of Actuaries working groups, participates in research efforts, develops content for continuing education opportunities, and moderates monthly public interest group discussions with Medicaid actuaries and other industry professionals . She received her bachelor’s degree in applied mathematics from Columbus State University.

Angelo P Giardino, MD, PhD, MPH, Wilma T. Gibson is Presidential Professor and Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Utah Spencer Fox Eccles School of Medicine and Chief Medical Officer at Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah. He received his medical degree and doctorate in education from the University of Pennsylvania, completed his residency and fellowship training at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and earned his master’s degree in public health from the University of Massachusetts. He also has a Masters in Theology from Catholic Open University and a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Before moving to Utah, Dr. Giardino at Texas Children’s Health Plan, Inc. and Texas Children’s Hospital from 2005 to 2018.

Rhonda M. Medows, MD, is a nationally recognized expert on population health and health equity. As President of Providence Population Health Management, Dr. Medows their platform to change the way healthcare organizations approach big issues like: B. Improving equity in the Medicare and Medicaid programs. Before joining Providence, she was executive vice president and chief medical officer at UnitedHealth. In the public sector, she has served as Commissioner for the Georgia Department of Community Health, Secretary of the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration, and Chief Medical Officer for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Southeast Region. dr Medows is also a primary care physician who has practiced at the Mayo Clinic and Kaiser Permanente. dr Medows received her medical degree from the Morehouse School of Medicine.

Reappointments:

Tricia Brooks, MBA, is a research professor at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy and a senior fellow at the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families (CCF), an independent, nonpartisan policy and research center whose mission is to expand and improve health protection for children and families. At CCF, Ms. Brooks focuses on issues related to policy, program administration, and the quality of Medicaid and CHIP coverage for children and families. Prior to joining CCF, she was founding CEO of New Hampshire Healthy Kids, an incorporated not-for-profit corporation administering CHIP in the state and served as Medicaid and CHIP Consumer Assistance Coordinator. Ms Brooks holds a Masters of Business Administration from Suffolk University.

Dennis Heaphy, MPH, MEd, MDiv, is a health justice advocate and researcher at the Massachusetts Disability Policy Consortium, a Massachusetts-based disability rights advocacy group. He is also a dual qualifying Medicaid and Medicare beneficiary enrolled in One Care, a plan operated in Massachusetts under the CMS Financial Alignment Initiative. Mr. Heaphy is involved in activities that promote equitable, whole-centered care for beneficiaries in Massachusetts and nationally. He is a co-founder of Disability Advocates Advancing Our Healthcare Rights (DAAHR), a statewide coalition in Massachusetts. DAAHR has been instrumental in driving measurable innovation that gives consumers a voice in One Care. Examples include the establishment of a consumer-led implementation council to guide the ongoing development and implementation of One Care, independent living for long-term services, and support for the coordinating role in care teams and an independent One Care ombudsman. He previously worked as the project coordinator for the Americans with Disabilities Act for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. He received his Masters of Public Health and Masters of Divinity from Boston University and his Masters of Education from Harvard University.

For more information about MACPAC, please contact Moira Forbes, acting CEO of MACPAC, at (202) 350-2000. Other questions should be directed to Chuck Young at the GAO Public Affairs Office at (202) 512-4800. The official announcement is published in the Federal Register.

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The Government Accountability Office, known as the investigative arm of Congress, is an independent, impartial agency that assists Congress in fulfilling its constitutional duties. GAO also works to improve the performance of the federal government and ensure its accountability to the American people. The agency examines the use of public funds; evaluates federal programs and policies; and provides analysis, recommendations, and other support to help Congress make informed oversight, policy, and funding decisions. GAO provides Congress with objective, fact-based, ideology-free, fair, and balanced information in a timely manner. GAO’s commitment to good governance is reflected in its core values ​​of accountability, integrity and reliability.

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