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+ Earlybird updated October 22 

Health Care: Commissioners Leave Toughest Medical Loss Ratio Calls to HHS

• "State insurance commissioners can check a major task off their list after unanimously passing a final model for the new health care law's medical loss ratio," CongressDaily (subscription) reports. "But now the Health and Human Services Department must quickly address thorny tax and implementation questions before it issues a final rule."

Contributor

Biography provided by participant

As President and Chief Executive Officer of America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), Karen Ignagni is the voice of health insurance plans, representing members that provide health care, long-term care, dental and disability benefits to more than 200 million Americans. AHIP was formed in late 2003 as a result of a merger between the American Association of Health Plans (AAHP) and Health Insurance Association of America (HIAA).

Ms. Ignagni led AAHP and, since joining the organization in 1993, she has won many accolades for her leadership. Washingtonian named her one of the Top Three "Top Guns" of all trade association heads. Modern Healthcare magazine routinely ranks her among the 100 Most Powerful People in Healthcare. The New York Times wrote, "In a city teaming with health care lobbyists, Ms. Ignagni is widely considered one of the most effective. She blends a detailed knowledge of health policy with an intuitive feel for politics." Fortune described the political program Ms. Ignagni spearheaded at AAHP as "worthy of a presidential election bid."

For the past several years, the Hill Newspaper has consistently ranked Ms. Ignagni among Washington's most effective lobbyists. Ms. Ignagni regularly testifies before Congress on key federal legislation. In recent years, she has appeared before Senate and House committees on matters ranging from health insurance plans' role in homeland security to Medicare reform to patient protection issues and access to health care coverage issues. Ms. Ignagni has authored more than 90 articles on a wide range of health care policy issues, including pieces published in The New York Times, USA Today, New York Daily News, The Washington Times, Institutional Investor, New England Journal of Medicine, Health Affairs, Modern Healthcare and Physician's Weekly. A recognized industry spokesperson, Ms. Ignagni appeared on the national network newscasts on ABC, CBS, NBC, and FOX.

Ms. Ignagni has also shared her insights on leading cable shows such as CNN's Inside Politics, MSNBC's Hardball, C-SPAN's Washington Journal, and CNBC's Power Lunch and Capital Report. Most recently, Ms. Ignagni was honored by the Sons of Italy Foundation with their 2005 Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in Association Management. In recognition of her leadership on health care issues, Ms. Ignagni has been invited to serve on several boards, including the Board of Columbia University's School of Nursing and the Advisory Board for The Health Industry Forum - a meeting of thought leaders designed to informinnovative health care policy and practice. Prior to joining AAHP in 1993, Ms. Ignagni directed the AFL-CIO's Department of Employee Benefits. In the 1980s, she was a Professional Staff Member on the U.S. Senate Labor and Human Resources Committee, preceded by work at the Committee for National Health Insurance and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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