GAO Press Release

Appointments Announced to Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC)


WASHINGTON, DC (May 14, 2010) Gene L. Dodaro, Acting Comptroller General of the United States and head of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), today announced the appointment of four new members and the reappointment of two existing members to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC). The official announcement will be published in the Federal Register.

“Policymakers continue to rely on MedPAC’s expert advice, and with the passage of health care reform, MedPAC’s role will continue to be particularly important. I am pleased to report that, once again, we had many qualified applicants for MedPAC. The four new individuals selected will bring impressive credentials and valuable experience and insights to the commission,” said Dodaro.

The newly appointed members are: Scott Armstrong, President and Chief Executive Officer, Group Health Cooperative; Katherine Baicker, PhD, Professor of Health Economics, Department of Health Policy and Management, Harvard School of Public Health; Mary Naylor, PhD, RN, FAAN, Professor of Gerontology and Director of the NewCourtland Center for Transitions and Health, University of Pennsylvania, School of Nursing; and Cori Uccello, FSA, MAAA, FCA, Senior Health Fellow of the American Academy of Actuaries. Their terms will expire in 2013.

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 health plans participating in the Medicare Advantage program and providers in Medicare’s traditional fee-for-service programs. The Comptroller General is responsible for naming new commission members.

The reappointed members, whose terms will expire in April 2013, are Thomas M. Dean, MD, a family physician in Wessington Springs, South Dakota and Herb B. Kuhn, President and CEO of the Missouri Hospital Association.

Commissioners whose terms will expire in 2012 are Mitra Behroozi, JD, executive of 1199 SEIU Benefit and Pension Funds; Robert A. Berenson, MD, FACP (vice chair), Fellow at the Urban Institute; Karen R. Borman, MD, General Surgery Residency Program Director and an attending physician, Abington Memorial Hospital, Pennsylvania; Ronald D. Castellanos, MD, a urologist at Southwest Florida Urologic Associates; Glenn M. Hackbarth, JD (chair); and Bruce Stuart, PhD, Professor and Executive Director of the Peter Lamy Center on Drug Therapy and Aging at the University of Maryland Baltimore.

Commissioners whose terms will expire in 2011 are Peter W. Butler, MHSA, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois; Michael Chernew, PhD, Professor of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts; Jennie Chin Hansen, RN, MSN, FAAN, President of AARP; Nancy M. Kane, DBA, Professor of Management in the Department of Health Policy and Management and Associate Dean of Education at the Harvard School of Public Health; and George N. Miller, Jr., MHSA, Chief Operating Officer of First Diversity Management Group and managing partner of First Diversity Healthcare Group.

Below are brief biographies of new commission members. For more information about MedPAC, contact Mark Miller, MedPAC’s executive director, at (202) 220-3700. Other calls should be directed to GAO’s Office of Public Affairs at (202) 512-4800.

Scott Armstrong is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Group Health Cooperative, a consumer-governed health system serving 650,000 enrollees through coordinated care plans for groups and individuals and for Medicare, Medicaid, and SCHIP beneficiaries. He has worked at Group Health since 1986, serving in positions ranging from assistant hospital administrator to chief operating officer; he became President and CEO in 2005. Before joining Group Health, Mr. Armstrong was the assistant vice president for hospital operations at Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, Ohio. Mr. Armstrong is a board member of the Alliance of Community Health Plans, America’s Health Insurance Plans and the Seattle Chamber of Commerce. He is also chair of the Board of the Pacific Science Center and a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives. He received his bachelor’s degree from Hamilton College in New York and a master’s degree in business with a concentration in hospital administration from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Katherine Baicker, PhD is Professor of Health Economics in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard School of Public Health, where her research focuses on health insurance finance and the effect of reforms on the distribution and quality of care. Dr. Baicker has served on the faculty of the Department of Public Policy in the School of Public Affairs at the University of California, Los Angeles, the Economics Department at Dartmouth College, and the Center for the Evaluative Clinical Sciences and the Department of Community and Family Medicine at Dartmouth Medical School. From 2005 to 2007, Professor Baicker served as a Senate-confirmed member of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers. She is a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and is on the Congressional Budget Office’s Panel of Health Advisers. She also served as a commissioner of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Commission to Build a Healthier America and was a member of the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Health Insurance Status and its Consequences. She received her BA in economics from Yale University and her PhD in economics from Harvard University.

Mary Naylor, PhD, RN, FAAN, is the Marian S. Ware Professor in Gerontology and Director of the NewCourtland Center for Transitions and Health at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing. Since 1989, Dr. Naylor has led an interdisciplinary program of research designed to improve the quality of care, decrease unnecessary hospitalizations, and reduce health care costs for vulnerable community-based elders. Dr. Naylor is also the National Program Director for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation program, Interdisciplinary Nursing Quality Research Initiative, aimed at generating, disseminating, and translating research to understand how nurses contribute to quality patient care. She co-chaired the National Quality Forum’s Steering Committee on Nursing Care Performance Measures. She is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, Institute of Medicine. Dr. Naylor received her PhD from the University of Pennsylvania and her BS in Nursing from Villanova University.

Cori Uccello, FSA, MAAA, FCA is Senior Health Fellow of the American Academy of Actuaries, serving as the actuarial profession’s chief public policy liaison on health issues. Before joining the Academy in 2001, Ms. Uccello was a senior research associate at the Urban Institute. She previously held positions at the Congressional Budget Office and the John Hancock Mutual Life Insurance Company. Ms. Uccello has written extensively on the health insurance market and the Medicare program, including pieces on Medicare’s financial condition and the Medicare prescription drug program. Ms. Uccello is a fellow of the Society of Actuaries and a member of the American Academy of Actuaries. She received her BS from Boston College and her MPP from Georgetown University.

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