2016 General Assembly: A Look Back & What's Ahead

This webinar took place on April 28, 2016 from Noon - 1:00 PM with A Look Back - providing an overview of the 2016 Session and the budget and legislative outcomes.  In the What's Ahead  section, we discussed the high priority health care reform related issues that advocates will be addressing. These include: network adequacy; the MIA regulatory process; HSCRC rate review, and more. 

You may stream or download a copy of the webinar here.

Presenters included:

Adrienne Ellis is the Director of Healthcare Reform and Community Engagement at the Mental Health Association of Maryland. In her current role, she is the lead on healthcare reform policy at MHAMD. Adrienne is excited about leading MHAMD’s new Citizen Action Team, as way for community members to engage with MHAMD in an effort to ensure that the 1 in 5 Marylanders living with mental illness are able to live fulfilling, productive lives in their communities.

She is also responsible for the Maryland Parity Project, which provides outreach and education to consumers and providers of their new rights under the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008. Adrienne continues to assist providers and consumers navigate the often complicated, insurance appeals and grievance process. Before joining the Maryland Parity Project, Adrienne was the Research Director at an Annapolis-based government affairs firm. She has worked with Maryland state legislators in both health care and higher education arenas as a member of the government affairs team of the University of Maryland Baltimore. Adrienne holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work with a Specialization in Management and Community Organizing from the University of Maryland, Baltimore. 

Robyn Elliott is a public policy and legislative consultant for Planned Parenthood of Maryland. She is a partner with  Public Policy Partners, and has over 16 years of experience in legislation, the state budget process, and health care finance. She is an expert in navigating the legislative and state budget process on complex policy and financial issues. She has particular expertise in health care reimbursement, health insurance, health occupations, and disabilities issues. Prior to Public Policy Partners, she was the Director of Governmental Affairs at the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. She also was a senior policy analyst with the Maryland General Assembly under the Department of Legislative Services. Her health care finance experience includes being a senior financial analyst at Johns Hopkins Hospital. She has a Master’s in Health Care Administration from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill.

Leni Preston serves as the Chair of the Maryland Women's Coalition for Health Care Reform.  In that role she fosters a collaborative model that brings together a diversity of voices to create effective partnerships that inform the Coalition's advocacy strategies and advance its mission of health equity.  In 2015 she received the Families USA Consumer Health Advocate of the Year Award in recognition of her "outstanding contribution on behalf of our nation's health care consumers." Prior to joining the Coalition, Leni's professional  career was in the field of interpretive and strategic planning for historic sites, museums, and non-profit organizations. More recently she has applied her planning skills to the area of grassroots political advocacy and policy. With three other women from Montgomery County, MD she created the Grassroots Political Action Toolkit to provide tools and resource materials for those new to the advocacy field. In 2006 she joined with others to form the Coalition. 

Ellen Weber, is a Professor of Law at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law and teaches the Drug Policy and Public Health Strategies Clinic. She created this clinical practice to expand access to substance use disorder treatment and to fight discrimination against individuals with histories of drug dependence. Ellen and her students have worked most recently on legislative, policy and education projects to implement the Affordable Care Act in Maryland; legislative projects and individual client matters to enforce Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act; a range of client matters to challenge discriminatory zoning, housing and education practices against persons with substance use disorders; and legislation to respond to the State’s heroin overdose epidemic. Before joining the law school faculty in 2002, Ellen served as the Senior Vice President for the Legal Action Center, a public interest law firm that specializes in drug, AIDS, and criminal justice issues, and as a trial attorney with the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.