Looking for Medicaid Relief in All the Right Places
Thursday, Oct. 20, 3:30-5 p.m.
For years, states have been looking for ways to cut the costs of Medicaid programs. Recent increased enrollment, decreased state revenues and the loss of enhanced federal matching funds as all states face mandated program expansion in 2014 under recent federal health reform have exacerbated the pressure. While the federal government offers some suggestions for relief, many states are already tackling cost cutting in aggressive and innovative ways. This session will explore where federal Medicaid flexibility starts and stops for states, discuss states’ successes in instituting cost-saving measures and examine various federal proposals working to dramatically reshape Medicaid for states.
Health Insurance Specialist, Innovation Center on Medicare and Medicaid
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
National Association of Medicaid Directors
Health Policy Advisor, Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire's Executvie Policy Office
James Johnston joined the Innovation Center at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in June 2011 to work on state engagement issues, after working for the state of Wisconsin for 26 years. Most recently he served as the CFO for the Wisconsin Medicaid program overseeing policy and rate development and overall Medicaid budget development and monitoring. Prior to that, he alternated between the leading the governor’s budget office health and insurance team and serving as policy bureau director for the Medicaid program. Mr. Johnston also served as the deputy state budget director for Wisconsin during Gov. McCallum’s administration, 2001 to 2003. James has graduate and undergraduate degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Matt Salo was named the first executive director, and at the time, only staff member of the National Association of Medicaid Directors (NAMD) in February 2011. This was a bit of a homecoming, as his first real job out of college was working for the Medicaid Directors from 1994 to 1999.
Matt formerly spent 12 years at the National Governors Association, where he worked on the governors’ health care and human services reform agendas, and where he firmly believes he was responsible for securing the entire tobacco settlement for the states, getting more than $100 billion in state fiscal relief, and in modernizing the Medicaid program.
Matt taught high school for two years at T.C. Williams High in Alexandria, Va., which actually bears no resemblance to the school they profiled in the Disney movie, Remember the Titans. He holds a BA in Eastern Religious Studies from the University of Virginia, and is still trying to find ways to explain how that got him to where he is today.
Jonathan joined Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire’s Executive Policy Office as health policy advisor in January 2007, after serving on the Committee Services staff of the Washington state Senate for 18 years. Between 1988 and 1996, he was counsel to the Commerce and Labor Committee, with responsibility in the areas of labor relations and employment standards.
In 1996, he moved to the Health and Long-Term Care Committee, where he served as counsel and staff coordinator, with personal responsibility for issues related to health care financing, including insurance regulation and public program design.
In April 2010, Gov. Gregoire assigned him to coordinate Washington’s implementation of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Jonathan received his undergraduate degree in government from Georgetown University, and a law degree and master’s degree in public administration from the University of Washington.