A national health policy expert, Seema Verma was the longest-serving Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) Administrator in modern history. Confirmed by the Senate in 2017, she oversaw health insurance programs for over 140 million Americans; oversaw a budget of $1.3 trillion, almost a third of the federal budget; and over 6,000 employees. Verma was the architect of CMS’s strategic vision, implementing over sixteen strategic initiatives aimed at transforming the American health care system to lower costs, improve quality, and increase access. During her tenure, Verma led federal government efforts to infuse market competition, empower patients, and unleash innovation producing historic reforms. Verma drove efforts to require price and quality transparency while ensuring patients have ownership over their portable medical records. Her historic Patients Over Paperwork initiative reduced the regulatory burden and saved the health care system billions of dollars. Verma also worked to accelerate value-based care transformation and address the social determinants of health by advancing new payment models throughout CMS programs, including models for drug pricing that resulted in lower insulin prices. Under her leadership, premiums dropped in Medicare Advantage, Part D, and the insurance exchanges. Verma also served on the White House COVID-19 Task Force where she led efforts to drive telehealth and remote care across the health care system while creating flexibility for health providers to augment the health care workforce, expand services and testing, and ensure access to vaccines and therapeutics.
Prior to coming to CMS, Verma was the founder and CEO of a health policy consulting firm and helped states and private industry on a range of health care issues. Verma has written extensively about a range of health care issues, publishing in the Wall Street Journal, Health Affairs, the Washington Post and a variety of other health care publications. She has also made guest appearances on several news shows, including Fox News, Fox Business, CNN, CBS, CNBC and ABC.
Seema Verma attended undergrad at the University of Maryland, graduating with a B.S. in Life Sciences and going on to pursue a Master’s degree in Public Health (MPH) with a concentration in health policy and management from Johns Hopkins University. Modern Healthcare ranked her as the most “Influential Person in Healthcare” in 2019 and one of the nation’s top 25 Women Leaders.
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