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Edward F. Howard, President.
Ed has headed up the Alliance since its formation in 1991. Previously, he served as general counsel for the Pepper Commission, a bipartisan congressional panel convened to plan for providing health coverage to all Americans. Before that, he directed public policy at the Villers Foundation and at the National Council on the Aging, and served as general counsel to the House Select Committee on Aging. He holds a juris doctor degree from Harvard University.

Kelly J. Appenzeller, Program Assistant for Congressional Events & Outreach.
Kelly joined the Alliance in July 2015. Before Alliance, she Co-Founded her Alma Mater’s Social Media team and overhauled much of the institutions digital and social media throughout her undergraduate years. Her team has been awarded the 2014 Bronze CASE Award for Best Uses of Social Media in Higher Education and partnered with the Office of the First Lady for Michelle Obama’s #ReachHigher campaign in May 2015. She has had experience in Washington with the K St. Public Affairs Firm, Curley Company, and a previous Press Internship with Congressman Tom Reed. Kelly graduated magna cum laude from St. Lawrence University in 2015 with a BA in Government and History and a minor in Philosophy.

Sabah Bhatnagar, Health Policy Communications Associate.
Sabah joined the Alliance in July 2013. She graduated from the University of Mary Washington with a B.S. in biology in 2009. Since graduating she has worked with a variety of nonprofits in the DC metro area including Nonviolence International and GAMA International.

Sarah Dash, Vice President for Policy.
Sarah joined the Alliance in April 2014 as Vice President for Policy. Prior to joining the Alliance, she was a member of the research faculty at the Georgetown University Health Policy Institute in the Center on Health Insurance Reforms. She has also served as a senior health policy aide to Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) and Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT). She received her Master's in Public Health from Yale University and a Bachelor of Science from MIT.

Anastasia Dent, Director of Operations & Grant Management.
Anastasia joined the Alliance in November 2010. She previously worked at Children's National Medical Center in DC and has a background in non-profit development, fund raising and event management. She received her BA from St. Lawrence University.

Samantha Feller, Program Assistant.
Samantha joined the Alliance in July 2015. She graduated cum laude from St. Mary’s College of Maryland with a BA in Political Science, with minors in Philosophy and English in May 2015. Samantha was named the Title IX Research Fellow for the 2014-2015 academic school year, and was a member of SMART (Sexual Misconduct: Advocacy & Resource Team), a 24/7 on-campus hotline service. She worked part-time as a Program Assistant for The Patuxent Partnership for two years, and spent last summer interning with The Parinaam Foundation, a non-profit in Bangalaru, India. She begins her Online Master’s in Public Health Program with George Washington University in September 2015.

Monica Laufer, Health Policy Associate.
Monica joined the Alliance in January 2015. She most recently worked at the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee under Senator Michael Bennet as part of the Western fundraising team. Prior to the DSCC, she spent some time on Capitol Hill in Congresswoman Julia Brownley’s office and in San Francisco writing for the local PBS station, KQED. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in 2011 with a BA in Political Science and a minor in Public Policy.

Beeta Rasouli, Health Policy Associate.
Beeta joined the Alliance in June 2011. She previously interned and worked on Capitol Hill in both the House and Senate, and most recently was a legislative assistant to the former assistant secretary of defense for health affairs. She holds an M.P.H. from The George Washington University and a B.S. in psychology.

Marilyn Werber Serafini, Vice President for Policy.
Before joining the Alliance, Marilyn was the Robin Toner Distinguished Fellow and senior correspondent at Kaiser Health News. She was an award-winning health care and welfare correspondent for National Journal magazine from 1995 to 2010, and before that was a senior reporter for CongressDaily (now National Journal daily). She holds a master’s degree in journalism and public affairs from American University and an undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland.

Ten Ekperigin, Health Policy Intern.
Ten joined the Alliance in August 2015. He graduated with his bachelor’s degree in public health in December 2014 from the University of Maryland, College Park. He has previously worked with the National Education Association in Washington, D.C. as a public relations intern where he shadowed lobbyists on Capitol Hill. Ten also worked with Community Science in Gaithersburg, MD where he assisted staff with focus groups and implemented online surveys to low-income health centers in the D.C. area in order to improve their cross-cultural competency and overall healthcare. Ten plans to attain his master’s degree in the fall of 2016 with a focus in epidemiology or public health policy.

Alex Wess, Health Policy Intern.
Alex joined the Alliance in August 2015. He has worked for Logan and Logan LLP, a management consulting firm as a healthcare research intern. He previously worked at MEC Advantage, a health insurance start-up, as a content strategist focusing on ACA provisions and at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine as a research assistant on a clinical study of opioid distribution in the emergency department. Alex graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a B.A. in Psychology with minors in Public Health and Healthcare Management in May 2015.


Toolkit: Emergency Preparedness in the U.S.: The Ebola Threat

Is the U.S. prepared for a potential virulent pandemic? This new Alliance toolkit examines public health infrastructure, funding and policy levers that deal with these kinds of health crises in America.

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Mike Leavitt Video: Consolidation and Control-The Evolving Health Care System

Mike Leavitt, chairman of Leavitt Partners and former HHS secretary, addresses the aggressive repositioning of players in the evolving health care system in a new Alliance for Health Reform video.

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Telemedicine Toolkit: The Promise and Challenges

The integration of technology and health care is on the rise. Although evidence shows that telemedicine has improved access to health care and resulted in lower costs in rural and underserved areas, challenges to expansion include reimbursement policies and acceptable security measures. A new Alliance for Health Reform Toolkit, “Telemedicine: The Promise and Challenges,” addresses the effectiveness of telemedicine as a tool for communication, as well as the expected outcomes and challenges ahead.

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Toolkit on Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS)

The aging of the baby boomers and the increase in the number of old-old persons (those 85 and older) are predictors for the increasing need for long-term services and supports (LTSS). Among persons age 65 and over, an estimated 70 percent will use LTSS. A new Alliance for Health Reform toolkit, “Long-Term Services and Supports: Changes and Challenges in Financing and Delivery,” provides a background on LTSS and discusses policy issues surrounding the topic.

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Experts Discuss Workplace Wellness Programs

In a new interview video, Karen Pollitz, senior fellow, private insurance and health reforms, The Kaiser Family Foundation and Dan Newton, vice president, product/solutions development and behavior economics, Anthem Care Management discuss the impact of workplace wellness programs. They address questions about regulations and program design and analyze the scope of wellness programs.

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Alliance Search for New CEO

WASHINGTON, DC (Aug. 3) – Edward F. Howard, founding executive vice president and CEO of the Alliance for Health Reform in Washington, DC, will retire in March 2016. A nationwide search is underway for his successor.

Over the years, the Alliance has presented hundreds of seminars on Capitol Hill and elsewhere, has organized briefings for reporters around the country and has prepared dozens of issue briefs and “toolkits,” as well as a series of highly-regarded sourcebooks for reporters on health policy topics.

Dr. Robert Graham, Chairman of the Board, noted that the search for a new CEO is being coordinated by Association Strategies of Alexandria, Va. Those interested in learning more about this opportunity should email or call 703/ 683-0580. You can also view the position profile on their website. The deadline for applications is Monday, October 12. 

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Position Profile

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Toolkit on Biosimilars

The Alliance for Health Reform has released a new toolkit, “Biosimilars: Unpacking Complex Issues.”

The Affordable Care Act created an expedited licensure pathway for biosimilars, and, in March 2015, the U.S. approved the first biosimilar, leaving policy makers, regulators, providers and stakeholders to grapple with regulatory and financial questions.

Biosimilars are similar – but not identical – to biologic drugs, and cost less. Unlike traditional pharmaceuticals, biologic drugs are derived from living organisms and tissues, making them more complex and expensive to produce.

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Toolkit on Connection Between Health and Housing

A new Alliance toolkit, “The Connection between Health and Housing: The Evidence and Policy Landscape,” provides a detailed look into federal, state and local initiatives, as well as cost implications for health and housing programs.

Attempts to tie health and housing policy are gaining momentum, amid evidence that housing, a social determinant of health, is an important factor in the health status of various populations. More than 610,000 people experience homelessness in the U.S., and over 250,000 individuals within that population have a severe mental illness or a chronic substance use disorder, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

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Video from Reporter Roundtable on Open Enrollment III

On October 5, speakers at a reporter roundtable held at the National Press Club on open enrollment III provided the latest information about premium trends and drivers, health plan availability and new comparison tools for consumers to use in choosing health plans. They discussed trends in the role of navigators and brokers, and increasing consumer expectations, particularly around the ease of the process.

Click here for video.

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