Seema Verma

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Seema Verma
Seema Verma official Transition portrait.jpg
Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
Assumed office
March 14, 2017
President Donald Trump
Preceded by Andy Slavitt (acting)
Personal details
Political party Republican
Alma mater University of Maryland,
College Park
(BS)
Johns Hopkins University
(MPH)

Seema Verma is an American health policy consultant and the current administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, serving under the Trump Administration.[1] She is the founder and CEO of SVC Inc., a health policy consulting firm.

Education[edit]

Verma received her bachelor's degree in life sciences from the University of Maryland, College Park in 1993. She earned a master's degree in public health with a concentration in health policy and management from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health in 1996.[2]

Career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Verma worked for the Health & Hospital Corporation of Marion County as vice president of planning[3] and at the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials in Washington, DC.[1]

SVC Inc.[edit]

Verma founded the health policy consulting firm SVC Inc. in June 2001. She is president and CEO of the company, which has worked with the states of Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Ohio, and Tennessee.[1] In preparation for the implementation of Obamacare, Verma and SVC Inc. have worked with state insurance agencies and public health agencies to redesign their Medicaid programs. She developed Medicaid reform programs, including waivers, for Ohio, Kentucky, and Iowa. Her firm provided technical assistance to the state of Michigan in the implementation of their Section 1115 Medicaid waiver. SVC also assisted Tennessee in their coverage expansion proposal and supported Iowa's Medicaid transition to managed care.[4] Verma and SVC have also worked with companies such as Electronic Data Systems (EDS), Hewlett Packard Enterprises (HP), Milliman, HighPoint Global, Roche Diagnostics, Health Management Associates (HMA), and Maximus.[5]

Following the passage of Obamacare, Verma worked with Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels on health care policy.[6] She was the architect of the Healthy Indiana Plan. The health insurance program, designed for people with low income, requires participants to pay into a health savings account and has high deductibles.[3] According to Verma, "you have to make your contribution every month, with a 60-day grace period. If you don't make the contribution, you're out of the program for 12 months. It's a strong personal responsibility mechanism." The Healthy Indiana Plan received support from the Indiana legislature and passed into law in January 2008.[3] She later created the related "HIP 2.0" under Governor Mike Pence.[3]

In 2014, an article in The Indianapolis Star raised concerns over a potential conflict of interest arising from Verma's dual roles as both a health care consultant for Indiana and an employee of a Hewlett-Packard division that is among Indiana's largest Medicaid vendors. As of 2014, SVC Inc. had been awarded over $3.5 million in Indiana state contracts. Verma was concurrently employed with Hewlett-Packard, earning over $1 million during a period when the company had secured $500 million in state contracts.[3][7]

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services[edit]

Verma being sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence on March 14, 2017.

On November 29, 2016, President-elect Donald Trump nominated Verma to serve as administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Health Department agency that oversees the Obamacare insurance markets, Medicare, and Medicaid.[8] On March 13, 2017, the United States Senate confirmed her nomination in a 55-43 vote.[9] One of her first actions was to send a letter to the Nation's governors urging them to impose insurance premiums for Medicaid, charge Medicaid recipients for emergency room visits, and encourage recipients to get jobs or job training.[10]

Awards and affiliations[edit]

Verma was awarded the Sagamore of the Wabash by Governor Pence in 2016. A graduate of the Richard G. Lugar Excellence in Public Service Series, she was also selected for the American Enterprise Institute's Leadership Network.[11] Verma was a participant in the Republican Governor's Public Policy Committee on Medicaid reform. She contributed to the report "A New Medicaid: A Flexible, Innovation and Accountable Future." Verma has also presented to the Medicaid Task Force of the Committee on Energy and Commerce and provided testimony before the U.S. House Energy Subcommittee on Health.[4]

Personal life[edit]

Verma's husband is a child psychiatrist who runs a medical practice through the Indiana Health Group.[12][13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Pradhan, Rachana (November 29, 2016). "Trump picks Seema Verma to head Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services". Politico. 
  2. ^ "Donald Trump meets with Dr. Seema Verma, who may help in restructuring Obamacare". The American Bazaar. November 22, 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Cook, Tony (August 26, 2014). "Seema Verma, powerful state health-care consultant, serves two bosses". The Indianapolis Star. Archived from the original on November 29, 2016. 
  4. ^ a b "Our Team: Seema Verma, MPH". SVC, Inc. Retrieved December 2, 2016. [better source needed]
  5. ^ "Questions for the Record "Hearing to Consider the Nomination of Seema Verma to be Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services" Before Senate Finance Committee" (PDF). February 16, 2017. 
  6. ^ Maurer, Katie (April 4, 2015). "Health insurance brokers turn focus to individuals". Indianapolis Business Journal. 
  7. ^ Cook, Tony (December 12, 2014). "5 loopholes in Indiana's ethics laws". The Indianapolis Star. 
  8. ^ Sanger-Katz, Margot (December 1, 2016). "A Trump Pick, and Why Indiana's Strict Medicaid Rules Could Spread". The New York Times. 
  9. ^ "On the Nomination PN49: Seema Verma, of Indiana, to be Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services". GovTrack. March 13, 2017. Retrieved March 14, 2017. 
  10. ^ On first day in office, new Medicaid chief urges states to charge premiums, prod recipients to get jobs. By Amy Goldstein, Washington Post, March 15, 2017.
  11. ^ Hakim-Shabazz, Abdul (November 29, 2016). "Trump Picks HIP 2.0 Architect to Serve in Administration". Indy Politics. 
  12. ^ http://www.policymed.com/2017/02/senate-finance-committee-hearing-on-seema-verma-confirmation.html
  13. ^ http://www.policymed.com/2017/02/senate-finance-committee-hearing-on-seema-verma-confirmation.html

External links[edit]