Potential Impacts of Health Reforms:

Examining Consequences of Change


Saturday, Dec. 4 | 10-11:30 a.m.


Following a whirlwind tour of the key provisions of the federal health reform law, a panel of health care stakeholders will gaze into their crystal balls and discuss the potential impacts of the Affordable Care Act. David Adkins, CSG executive director, will lead public and private sector representatives in a conversation about opportunities and challenges presented by the reform mandates. The session will help state policymakers understand the various lenses through which health reform is viewed, including by health insurance companies, hospitals, state Medicaid programs, physicians and other providers, and consumers.



Christopher Koller
Christopher Koller became Rhode Island's first health insurance commissioner in March 2005. The Office of the Health Insurance Commissioner is responsible for health insurance consumer protection, the financial solvency of Rhode Island's domestic health insurers, the fair treatment of providers by insurers and directing health insurers towards policies that improve the accessibility, affordability and quality of Rhode Island's health care system. In this role, Koller also coordinates the health policy agenda of the administration of Gov. Donald Carcieri and is an assistant professor of Community Health in the Program in Public Health at Brown University. Prior to this position, Koller was the CEO of Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island, a nationally recognized community health center-based Medicaid health plan. In this role he was the founding chair of the Association of Community Affiliated Plans. Koller has a bachelor's degree from Dartmouth College and master's degrees in management and religion from Yale University.


James Purcell

On Jan. 1, 2005, James Purcell became the fifth president of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Rhode Island. He joined the company as chief operating officer in May 2000, and became acting president and CEO in May 2004. Purcell was chosen as the recipient of the Providence Business News 2005 Business Excellence Award for Individual Leadership. In 2010, he was selected as the 2010 Corporate Leader of the Year by the Hispanic American Chamber of Commerce of Rhode Island.
Purcell was formerly a founding partner and managing partner of the Providence law firm of Partridge Snow & Hahn, LLP. He received his undergraduate degree from Cornell University in 1967, and his law degree, magna cum laude, from Boston University School of Law in 1974. He served in the U.S. Army as an infantry airborne officer and as a Pathfinder Team Leader with the 101st Airborne Division in Vietnam from 1969 to 1970.
Purcell currently serves on several boards, including the national Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, the Greater Providence YMCA, the Advisory Council of the Roger Williams University Law School, and the Brown University Civic Leadership Council.


Clement (Clem) Cypra
Clem Cypra is deputy vice president for State Affairs at the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA).  He provides expertise on legislation, policy and health economics for the association and its members.  Cypra has been with PhRMA since 2005 after working for a number of years in New York providing analytical and economic services to health plans and Medicaid programs, and he has conducted primary research in health economics focusing on the use of pharmaceuticals and medical technology in patient populations. He has a master’s degree from the University of North Carolina and a bachelor’s degree from Duke University.
Kelly Kenney
Kelly Kenney is the campaign director of the American Medical Association’s Advocacy Resource Center, which coordinates the AMA’s state legislative and regulatory advocacy activities.  In this position, she works with a team of legislative attorneys to develop comprehensive state-level advocacy campaigns on issues of importance to physicians and their patients. Her unit provides strategic and legal support to state medical associations and national medical specialty societies across the country to implement these campaigns in the states.  
During her tenure, the AMA has spearheaded successful advocacy initiatives resulting in state laws and regulations on issues including medical liability reforms, managed care reforms, prompt pay, administrative simplification and transparency in the health care system, scope of practice laws and many initiatives to promote public health and safety.    
Kenney earned her law degree at the University of Michigan Law School and her bachelor's from Michigan State University.   Prior to joining the AMA, she practiced law at Wildman, Harrold, Allen and Dixon, a large litigation firm in Chicago, focusing on products liability and medical malpractice defense cases.   


Katherine Howitt, Policy Analyst, Community Catalyst
Katherine Howitt researches health policy developments and works with state groups to expand health care coverage. Before joining Community Catalyst, she conducted research with the Harvard School of Public Health on health care quality measurement and on disparities of care between racial and ethnic groups.
Prior to moving the U.S., Howitt worked in Montreal with a community organization to protect welfare, tenant, healthcare and immigration rights by coordinating with local officials to ensure compliance with social rights laws. Howitt holds a bachelor's degree in economics and history from McGill University, and a master's degree in economics from the University of British Columbia. Community Catalyst is a national nonprofit advocacy organization working to build consumer participation in the health care system.