Press Release

GAO Makes MedPAC Appointments

WASHINGTON, DC (May 24, 2017) – Gene L. Dodaro, Comptroller General of the United States and head of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), today announced the appointment of two new members to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC), as well as the reappointment of three current members.

“MedPAC plays a crucial role in advising Congress on Medicare issues. I am pleased to announce these latest appointments and want to thank the many strong candidates who applied this year,” said Dodaro.

The newly appointed members are David Grabowski, PhD, Professor in the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School, and Dana Gelb Safran, ScD, Chief Performance Measurement and Improvement Officer and Senior Vice President, Enterprise Analytics, at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts.  Their terms will expire in April 2020.

The reappointed members, whose terms will also expire in April 2020, are Kathy Buto, MPA; Francis “Jay” Crosson, MD (Chair); and Warner Thomas, MBA, President and CEO of the Ochsner Health System.

Congress established MedPAC in 1997 to analyze access to care, cost and quality of care, and other key issues affecting Medicare. MedPAC advises Congress on payments to providers in Medicare’s traditional fee-for-service programs and to health plans participating in the Medicare Advantage program. The Comptroller General is responsible for naming new commission members.

Commissioners whose terms will expire in April 2018  are Alice Coombs, MD, Critical Care Specialist and Anesthesiologist, Milton Hospital and South Shore Hospital, Weymouth, MA; Jack Hoadley, PhD, Research Professor, Health Policy Institute, McCourt School of Public Policy, Georgetown University, Washington, DC; David Nerenz, PhD, Director of the Center for Health Policy and Health Services Research, Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, MI; Rita Redberg, MD, Professor, Clinical Medicine, University of California at San Francisco Medical Center, San Francisco, CA; Craig Samitt, MD, MBA, Executive Vice President and Chief Clinical Officer, Anthem Inc., Indianapolis, IN; and Susan Thompson, MS, RN, Senior Vice President of Integration and Optimization, UnityPoint Health, Fort Dodge, IA.

Commissioners whose terms will expire in April 2019 are Amy Bricker, RPh, Vice President, Supply Chain Strategy, Express Scripts, Inc., St. Louis, MO; Jon B. Christianson, PhD (Vice Chair), James A. Hamilton Chair in Health Policy and Management, Division of Health Policy and Management, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN; Brian DeBusk, PhD, CEO, DeRoyal Industries, Powell, TN; Paul Ginsburg, PhD, Leonard Schaeffer chair in Health Policy Studies, Brookings Institution, Washington, DC and Professor of Health Policy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA; Bruce Pyenson, FSA, MAAA, Principal and Consulting Actuary, Milliman, Inc. in New York, NY; and Pat Wang, JD, CEO, Healthfirst, New York, NY.

For more information about MedPAC, contact Mark Miller, MedPAC’s executive director, at (202) 220-3700. Other calls should be directed to Chuck Young in GAO’s Office of Public Affairs at (202) 512-4800. The official announcement will be published in the Federal Register.

Brief biographies of the new commission members follow:

David Grabowski, PhD, is a Professor in the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School in Boston, MA. His research primarily focuses on the economics of aging, with an emphasis on post-acute and long-term care financing, organization, and delivery of services. Dr. Grabowski served as a member of two CMS Technical Expert Panels that focused on the Home Health Prospective Payment System and the quality measures used in the Home Health Value-Based Purchasing Model. He serves on the editorial board of several journals, including the American Journal of Health Economics and Medical Care Research & Review. Dr. Grabowski received his PhD in public policy from the Irving B. Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago.

Dana Gelb Safran, ScD, is the Chief Performance Measurement and Improvement Officer and Senior Vice President, Enterprise Analytics, at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts.  In that role, she is responsible for leading efforts to use data, measurement, incentives, and reporting to improve the quality, outcomes and affordability of care. Dr. Safran is also an Associate Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine. She currently serves on a number of state and national advisory bodies related to healthcare quality and affordability, including the National Quality Forum Consensus Standards Approval Committee and the CMS Technical Expert Panel on the Quality Rating System. Dr. Safran received her ScD in health policy and management from the Harvard School of Public Health.

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