Rough Seas Ahead: Health Policy in 2017

Three speakers provided a look at major health policy issues, with emphasis on state policy options available in 2017. Michael Williams discussed health equity and disparities and how they drive health care costs. Dania Palanker reviewed health insurance exchanges and provided data for the 2016 open enrollment period. She also looked at the major policy proposals being considered by the incoming Trump administration. Ameet Sarpatwari analyzed pharmaceutical drug pricing and state policy recommendations recently developed by a work group of the National Academy for State Health Policy. 

Click here for the Current State newsletter article, "Re-evaluting Health Spending in 2017," summarizing the session. 

Presentation slides and audios from the session are posted below, as well as speaker biographies. 

At the conclusion of the presentations, the CSG Health Public Policy Committee discussed and approved two policy resolutions related to Medicaid and the opioid epidemic. The resolutions moved on the Intergovernmental Affairs Committee and were finally approved on December 11 by the CSG Executive Committee.  For the full text of the approved resolutions click on the titles below: 



Michael Williams, Director, The Center for Health Policy, University of Virginia

  Download the audio of the presentation "With Money You Can See a Doctor, but Not Good Health" in PDF (without audio) or as a Video (with audio)

Dania Palanker, Associate Research Professor, Center on Health Insurance Reforms, Georgetown University

  Download the presentation "The ACA in the States Today and Looking Forward" in PDF (without audio) or as a Video (with audio) 

Ameet Sarpatwari, Instructor and Epidemiologist, Harvard Medical School

   Download the presentation "High-Cost Drugs Origins, Impacts, and Prospects for Reform" in PDF (without audio) or as a Video (with audio)

          Related resources:


Speaker Biographies:

Michael Williams, Director, University of Virginia Center for Health Policy

Dr. Williams joined UVA in 2012 as an Associate Professor of Surgery and Director, Emergency General Surgery and in 2016 was appointed director of The Center for Health Policy. The Center provides comprehensive, apolitical analysis of current and proposed health policy for citizens and policymakers. Its work includes educating and training future leaders in health policy and health care systems through research, conferences, field-based experiences and working with students. With more than 20 years of experience in health care delivery and systems design, Dr. Williams is passionate about health care equity issues.

Dania Palanker, Professor, Center on Health Insurance Reforms, Georgetown University

Palanker is a nationally recognized expert on private insurance and benefit design with more than 15 years of health policy experience at the National Women’s Law Center and the Service Employees International Union. She joined the Georgetown University Center on Health Insurance Reform in August 2016. She has deep knowledge on the nexus of private insurance and the implementation of the Affordable Care Act.  At CHIR, she will work on projects funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Commonwealth Fund.

Ameet Sarpatwari, Instructor and Epidemiologist, Harvard Medical School

Sarpatwari is an Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School and an Associate Epidemiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital within the Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics. His research draws upon his interdisciplinary training as an epidemiologist and lawyer and focuses on the effects of laws and regulations on therapeutic development, approval, use, and related public health outcomes. Among other projects, he is currently examining the public health implications of variation in state drug product selection laws and the comparative safety and effectiveness of biosimilars.





Williams.pptx10.65 MB
Palanker .pdf1.29 MB
Sarpatwari_December 9_2016.pdf445.69 KB