CEO Marilyn Tavenner On Politico’s Pulse Check Podcast

by Alicia Caramenico

August 12, 2016

America’s Health Insurance Plans CEO and President Marilyn Tavenner recently sat down with Dan Diamond of Politico’s Pulse Check. Take a listen to the podcast as she discusses her career from nursing to government to health insurance, her priorities for AHIP, where the health insurance industry stands, and connecting with consumers.

On her career as a nurse:

“It started out as a desire to help. … At the time when I was in nursing school, my goal was to be best nurse ever and to work in critical care. I saw that as a lifetime goal.”

“What [nurses] have is an uncanny ability to build relationships beyond just the individual – to their family, to their significant other, whatever their support system is.”

On AHIP’s priorities:

“Medicare Advantage, consumers like it. They enjoy the program. We’ve got a stable program here; we’ve got a growing program. This can be, if you will, the guide to how we do delivery system reform.”

“[Medicaid] is a huge opportunity for health plans to engage with states and be good partners. But we want to help them be good partners, we want to show what quality products looks like, what contracting should look like, and again not lose sight of that Medicaid consumer.”

On where the health insurance industry stands:

“They have lots of growth opportunity, whether it’s in Medicare Advantage or Medicaid, hence the importance of government partnerships, Part D. We also have a commercial market that has stabilized. … I think they’re in strong positions.”

On connecting with consumers:

“Insurance plans are trying to move closer to the consumer and partner with consumers.”

“Consumers are starting to ask questions. While that may be a challenge to put that out there to consumers directly, it’s also an opportunity for us and plans to educate the consumer on the type of questions they should be asking, what are basic insurance requirements. And those are some of things were offering through the association, and more importantly, plans are offering directly to consumers.”

Listen to the full interview below.