Marilyn Tavenner, Acting Administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and Virginia’s former Secretary of Health and Human Resources, addressed a large group of faculty, students, and interested guests at the College of William & Mary on September 24, 2012. The event was co-sponsored by Riverside Health System’s Center for Excellence in Aging and Geriatric Health (CEAGH) and the College's Schroeder Center for Health Policy. Ms. Tavenner’s talk focused on the Affordable Care Act and its effect on older Americans.
The Affordable Care Act became law in 2010, and Ms. Tavenner leads the federal agency that is responsible for implementing much of it. Ms. Tavenner spoke specifically about how the Affordable Care Act will:
* save older Americans money through prescription drug coverage,
* strengthen Medicare through the provision of prevention services and extending the life of the Trust Fund,
* include home and community-based services as a Medicaid option, and
* provide improved coordinated care for Medicaid-Medicare dual eligible individuals.
Following her prepared remarks, Ms. Tavenner participated in a lively discussion, answering questions about the health reform law’s expected implementation and addressing concerns, including those from emergency room physicians who worried about the influx of new patients resulting from the new law without adequate numbers of physicians in place.
Louis Rossiter, a Schroeder Center faculty affiliate and former Virginia Secretary of Health and Human Resources, played an instrumental role in organizing Ms. Tavenner’s visit to Williamsburg. Ms. Tavenner was Dr. Rossiter’s former student at Virginia Commonwealth University. Another Schroeder Center faculty affiliate, Christine Jensen, was featured in a video shown before Ms. Tavenner’s talk that celebrated 10 years of services provided by CEAGH.