California Health Care Personnel News Update for December 2010
Assembly Committee on Health
Assembly Member Bill Monning (D-Carmel) has been reappointed chair of the Assembly Committee on Health, the Salinas Californian reports. The committee holds primary jurisdiction over several areas, including:
- Health care;
- Long-term health care facilities; and
- Medi-Cal, California's Medicaid program (Salinas Californian, 12/16/10).
California Healthcare Institute, La Jolla
On Dec. 6, the California Healthcare Institute announced the appointment of Consuelo Hernandez as its vice president of state government affairs. CHI is a not-for-profit public policy research organization for California's biomedical industry.
In her new role, Hernandez is responsible for overseeing CHI's Sacramento office and directing the organization's state government relations advocacy and outreach activities. Hernandez previously served as director of the Assembly Fellowship Program for California State University-Sacramento. She also has served as director of government affairs for L.A. Care Health Plan (California Healthcare Institute release, 12/6/10).
CHI also promoted Nicole Beckstrand to senior director of marketing and communications and Todd Gillenwater to senior vice president of public policy, Modern Healthcare reports. Beckstrand will manage the group's publications and website and will oversee events production, media relations and social media policies. Gillenwater will manage the institute's lobbying and outreach activities and its office in Washington, D.C. (Grace, Modern Healthcare, 12/27/10).
Dental Board of California
Outgoing Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) has reappointed Huong Le to the Dental Board of California, where she has served since 2009, the Contra Costa Times reports.
Le also has served as dental director for Oakland-based Asian Health Services and as clinical instructor for the UC-San Francisco School of Dentistry (Louie, Contra Costa Times, 12/28/10).
Department of Mental Health
At the end of December, Stephen Mayberg retired from his post as director of the state Department of Mental Health, the Los Angeles Times reports.
His retirement comes after Gov.-elect Jerry Brown (D) selected a new leader of the Health and Human Services Agency, which manages the Department of Mental Health (Romney, Los Angeles Times, 12/24/10).
Health Benefit Exchange Board
On Dec. 31, Schwarzenegger appointed two members of his administration to the state's new Health Benefit Exchange Board, the Los Angeles Times' "PolitiCal" reports. The two appointees are Susan Kennedy, Schwarzenegger's chief of staff, and Kim BelshÃ©, the outgoing secretary for California's Health and Human Services Agency.
The board will help negotiate with health plans participating in the health insurance exchange that California created under the federal health reform law. Both Kennedy and BelshÃ© will serve four-year terms and neither will receive a salary. The positions are not subject to Senate confirmation (York, "PolitiCal," Los Angeles Times, 12/31/10).
Diana Dooley -- who Gov.-elect Brown selected as the new secretary for California's HHSA -- also will serve on the Health Benefit Exchange Board (Calvan, Sacramento Bee, 1/1). Assembly Speaker John PÃ©rez (D-Los Angeles) and the Senate Rules Committee also will select appointees for the five-member panel ("PolitiCal," Los Angeles Times, 12/31/10).
Independent Citizen's Oversight Committee
On Dec. 3,Â Schwarzenegger reappointed Duane Roth (R) to the Independent Citizen's Oversight Committee for the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine. Roth has served as a member of the committee since 2006 and as vice chair since 2009. He also has served as chair and CEO of Alliance Pharmaceutical Corporation since 1985 (Office of the Governor release, 12/3/10).
On Dec. 8, Schwarzenegger reappointed Shlomo Melmed and Carmen Puliafito (D) to the Independent Citizen's Oversight Committee for the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine. Since 2008, Melmed has served as dean of the medical faculty at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. Puliafito has served as dean of medicine and professor of ophthalmology for the University of Southern California's Keck School of Medicine since 2007.
The positions do not require Senate confirmation and compensation is $100 per diem (Office of the Governor release, 12/8/10).
Institute of Medicine
Marge Ginsburg -- executive director of the Center for Healthcare Decisions in Sacramento -- has been named to an Institute of Medicine committee that will determine essential health benefits under the federal health reform law, the Sacramento Business Journal reports.
The IOM panel will develop criteria for essential benefits that must be offered by health plans participating in health insurance exchanges beginning in 2014. The committee aims to hold six meetings over a six month period and release recommendations in September 2011.
Ginsburg currently serves on a National Committee for Quality Assurance panel for performance measurement. She also is a board member for the California Health Information Exchange and the Integrated Healthcare Association (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 12/7/10).
Managed Risk Medical Insurance Board
On Dec. 20, the Managed Risk Medical Insurance Board announced that it had appointed Janette Casillas as executive director, the Sacramento Business Journal reports.
Casillas has worked for MRMIB for 12 years and has served as the board's chief deputy director for three years. In her new role, Casillas succeeds Lesley Cummings, who retired on Dec. 29. MRMIB is responsible for administering several state programs, including:
- Healthy Families, California's Children's Health Insurance Program;
- Major Risk Medical Insurance Program, California's high-risk health coverage program; and
- The Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan, a new high-risk insurance pool established under the federal health reform law (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 12/20/10).
National Committee for Quality Assurance
George Halvorson, CEO and chair of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, has been named to the board of directors for the National Committee for Quality Assurance, Modern Healthcare reports.
Halvorson serves on policy and advisory boards for the American Hospital Association, the Commonwealth Fund and the Institute of Medicine (Evans, Modern Healthcare, 12/28/10).
Pacific Business Group on Health, San Francisco
San Francisco-based Pacific Business Group on Health has named Bill Kramer as executive director of national policy effective Jan. 18, Modern Healthcare reports. In his new role, Kramer will lead the group's health care reform efforts in Washington, D.C. The group represents employers seeking to reduce costs and improve the quality of health care.
Kramer has worked in senior management and executive roles at Kaiser Permanente for more than 20 years. He will replace Peter Lee, who became director of delivery system reform at HHS' Office of Health Reform in June (Modern Healthcare, 12/20/10).
Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, San Jose
Linda Smith has been named CEO of the 574-bed Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, the San Jose Mercury News reports. Linda Smith previously served as hospital administrator of the Aurora BayCare Medical Center in Milwaukee.
Her new post was created after Santa Clara County Executive Jeff Smith eliminated the positions of former hospital director Mike Skehan and former CEO Kim Roberts. In her new role, which she starts in February, Linda Smith will receive $284,867 in annual compensation (Gonzales, San Jose Mercury News, 12/17/10).
St. John's Healthcare Foundation, Oxnard
Anne Kratz has been appointed as vice president of development for St. John's Healthcare Foundation, where she is responsible for developing fundraising efforts to benefit St. John's Regional Medical Center in Oxnard and St. John's Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo.
Kratz previously served as vice president for University Advancement and Development at Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, where she was responsible for fund development activities (St. John's Hospitals release, 11/30/10).
St. John's Regional Medical Center, Oxnard
On Dec. 6, Kimburli Wilson started a new role as COO and vice president of St. John's Regional Medical Center, where she is responsible for the hospital's daily operations.
Previously, Wilson served as vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer at Mercy Gilbert Medical Center in Arizona (St. John's Hospitals release, 12/6/10).
The Effort, Sacramento
On Dec. 31, Robert Caulk retired from his position as CEO of the health care organization The Effort, the Sacramento Business Journal reports. The Effort is a federally qualified health center that operates several clinics that provide primary care, mental health services and substance addiction programs.
On Jan. 1, Jonathan Porteus took over as CEO of The Effort after serving as a consultant and administrator for the organization for 10 years (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 12/31/10).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.