Diane has spent her entire career advocating for consumers. She began her career in health advocacy in 1989 as the founder and president of the Medicare Rights Center. Since 2005, she has worked with policy experts, advocates, caregivers, boomers and older adults on a range of health policy and health advocacy initiatives. Most recently, Diane has been leading the effort to build Just Care so that it helps ensure people’s health and economic security. Diane currently serves on the Board of Consumer Reports and the Benedict Silverman Foundation.
Dr. Susan Molchan
Susan Molchan, MD, MA, completed her psychiatry residency and research fellowship at the National Institute of Mental Health, then stayed on as a staff scientist to continue research on Alzheimer’s disease and depression in older people. She continued work on Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia at the National Institute on Aging. Working at the FDA for 5 years reinforced her impression that what is new as far as drug treatment, is not necessarily better.
As an active member of the National Physicians Alliance, Dr. Molchan works to keep the FDA focused on doing what’s best for consumers and patients.
People often ask me if we’ll ever find a cure for Alzheimer’s disease. Since the biggest risk factor for Alzheimer’s is age, and most people with it are in their 80s, I tell them “cure” is probably the wrong word to use. But there is really good news coming from recent studies in Europe and the U.S. The incidence of Alzheimer’s disease is decreasing, compared to people of the same age 25 years ago, among those who are better educated and who engage in heart healthy lifestyles. The best advice (Perhaps something your mom or grandmother would have said?): Take a walk and eat your vegetables.
Dr. Salomeh Keyhani
Salomeh Keyhani, MD, MPH, has been taking care of patients and conducting health care research for the last 15 years. She is an Associate Professor in the Division of General Internal Medicine at the University of California at San Francisco School of Medicine, who has published widely. She is also a staff physician at the San Francisco VA Medical Center.
Julie Potyraj is the community manager for MHA@GW, HealthInformatics@GW and MPH@GW, all offered by the Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University. For several years, she served as a rural education development specialist in Zambia coordinating youth empowerment programs and community health education. She is currently an MPH@GW student focusing on global health and health communications.
Nancy J. Altman has a forty-year background in the areas of Social Security and private pensions. She is president of Social Security Works and chair of the Strengthen Social Security coalition.
Democratic House Leader Nancy Pelosi appointed Ms. Altman to a six-year term, starting October 1, 2017, on the Social Security Advisory Board. The seven-person Board is a bipartisan, independent federal government agency established in 1994 to advise the President, Congress, and the Commissioner of Social Security.
Ms. Altman is the author of The Battle for Social Security: From FDR’s Vision to Bush’s Gamble (John Wiley & Sons, 2005), and co-author of Social Security Works! Why Social Security Isn’t Going Broke and How Expanding It Will Help Us All (The New Press, 2015). She has shared her Social Security expertise on numerous television and radio shows, including PBS NewsHour, MSNBC, and FOX News. She has published op-eds in dozens of newspapers including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today.
As MedShadow’s content editor, Jonathan Block brings more than a decade of experience covering the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, health insurers, the Affordable Care Act, and mental health. Before joining MedShadow, he was medical editor of Psychiatry Advisor. Other editorial positions include reporter with Modern Healthcare, editor with Health Plan Week and Health Reform Week, and managing editor of The Pink Sheet Daily. Jonathan has been published in the Washington Post, Associated Press, and other publications. He has also appeared as an expert commentator on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal.
Steven Findlay is an independent health care journalist and a contributing editor for Consumer Reports.
Dr. Deborah Jones
Deborah P. Jones MD MPH is a practicing internist at the Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) in New York, New York. She is an Associate Professor of Medicine at CUMC, where she oversees the primary care teaching program for medical students at the College of Physicians & Surgeons. She also teaches communication skills to practicing physicians.
Dr. Marc Manseau
Dr. Manseau is a board-certified psychiatrist currently living and working in New York City. He graduated with a degree in Human Biology from Brown University, where he also earned a Masters in Public Health. He completed medical school at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. After graduating from general psychiatry residency training at the New York University School of Medicine, he completed a fellowship in Public Psychiatry at Columbia University. He is currently appointed as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the New York University School of Medicine. He has extensive clinical experience working with populations with serious mental illnesses, and has conducted research and published on various public health and policy-related topics.
Halah Flynn is the community manager for Nursing@USC, the University of Southern California's online family nurse practitioner program. She recently graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with degrees in journalism and global studies. Halah is an avid blogger for all things health, education and social justice-related.
Emily Shearer is currently a graduate student at the University of Cambridge studying health policy. Originally from Lafayette, California, Emily attended Cornell University as an undergraduate where she graduated with honors as a double-major in Biology and Government. Emily will spend one more year in the UK as a Marshall Scholar before returning to the US in the fall of 2016 for medical school. Emily hopes to pursue a career combining clinical practice as a physician with work in health policy at the state or national level.
Alex Lawson is the Executive Director of Social Security Works, the convening member of the Strengthen Social Security Coalition— a coalition made up of over 340 national and state organizations representing over 50 million Americans. Lawson is also the owner of We Act Radio and its video and livestream production arm NMG Live. We Act is a media corporation that combines broadcast and new media to deliver shows in the formats people use most. We Act’s original programs can be found streaming at WeActRadio.com.
Former CIGNA executive-turned-whistleblower Wendell Potter writes about the health care industry and the ongoing battle for health reform.
Potter is the author of Deadly Spin: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans and Obamacare: What’s in It for Me? What Everyone Needs to Know About the Affordable Care Act.
Peter S. Arno, Ph.D.
Health economist Peter S. Arno is a senior fellow and director of Health Policy Research at the Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and a Senior Fellow at the National Academy of Social Insurance. He received his doctorate in economics at the New School for Social Research. Dr. Arno’s recent work includes studies on the impact of Social Security and the Earned Income Tax Credit on population health, food insecurity and the elderly; economics of caregiving; social and geographic determinants of obesity; and regulation and pricing practices of the pharmaceutical industry. His 1992 book, Against the Odds: The Story of AIDS Drug Development, Politics & Profits, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.
Joel Bernstein is a veteran television producer for CBS News, mostly with “60 Minutes.” He began his career as a writer for Walter Cronkite. He became Bureau Chief in Tel Aviv and Paris. He produced documentaries for CBS Reports, including the film, “A Soldier Returns,” about General Norman Schwarzkopf returning to Vietnam for the first time since he fought there.
Fran Quigley coordinates the group PFAM: People of Faith for Access to Medicines, and is a clinical professor of law and director of the Health and Human Rights Clinic at Indiana University McKinney School of Law. His writings on access to medicine are available here, and his book on the topic, A Prescription for Change, will be published by Cornell University Press in 2017.
Dianne Lange is a veteran medical reporter and editor, travel writer; book author; and digital content provider. She is also an RN, and her health background enhances her expertise in translating scientific information and research into entertaining and actionable copy. Her forte is spotting trends and developing timely articles, blogs and books.
Dr. Sanjeev Sriram
Dr. Sriram is the host of “Dr. America,” an innovative podcast about health justice on We Act Radio. He also writes about the relationships between health policy and civil rights. Dr. Sriram completed his medical degree and his pediatrics residency at UCLA, where he also served as Chief Resident at the Department of Pediatrics. In June 2009, he earned his Masters in Public Health after completing the Commonwealth Fund Mongan Fellowship in Minority Health Policy at the Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Sriram then moved to Washington, DC to advocate for passage of the Affordable Care Act. He currently practices general pediatrics in southeast Washington, DC and is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences.
Dr. Sriram continues to be an active member of Doctors for America, MomsRising, the
National Physicians Alliance, and the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Erica is a journalist, essayist, book author and quick study who writes
about everything from health to technology to relationships to pop
culture with flair and humor. Her articles and essays have appeared
in the New York Times Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Ladies Home Journal,
Woman’s Day, Consumer’s Digest and many other publications.
Dr. Christy Huff
Dr. Christy Huff is a cardiologist and co-director at Benzodiazepine Information Coalition. After being injured by a prescribed benzodiazepine, she now advocates for better physician education in the safe prescribing and tapering of these drugs.
Dr. Peter DeGolia
Professor of Family Medicine, Case Western Reserve University
Medical Director and geriatrician, McGregor PACE in Cleveland Ohio
Chair, Primary Care Committee of the National PACE Association
Ethan Rome is a campaign strategist and former executive director of Health Care for America Now (HCAN), the national grassroots coalition that ran a $60 million five-year campaign to pass, protect, and promote the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
For more than 25 years Rome has led major national issue campaigns, including efforts to protect Medicare and Medicaid and win better wages and benefits for America’s child and home care providers. Rome was recently featured on Moyers & Company as one of the 19 “Activists to watch,” leading grassroots movements to change America.
Susan Ladika is a longtime freelance journalist who writes about health and the business side of health care. Her articles have run in places such as Managed Care magazine, Health System Specialist, Healthgrades, HealthCentral.com and dozens of other publications.
Alex Woodbridge is a graduate of the University of California, Davis with degrees in both Biological Sciences and Psychology. Since graduation she has worked for the Northern California Institute for Research and Education on the San Francisco VA Medical Center as a research assistant. Alex has been working on Just Care since January of 2014 as editorial director. Her responsibilities include curating and organizing posts for our weekly newsletters as well as assisting in the production and editing of the newsletter each week. She is currently applying for medical school.
Shannon Brownlee is a nationally known writer and essayist whose work has appeared in The Atlantic, New York Times Magazine, The New Republic, Slate, Time, Washington Monthly, Washington Post, Times of London, Los Angeles Times, and BMJ among many other publications. She is best known for her groundbreaking work on overtreatment and the implications for health care policy.
Art Levine is the author of the book Mental Health, Inc.: How Corruption, Lax Oversight and Failed Reforms Endanger Our Most Vulnerable Citizens, a contributor to Newsweek and a contributing editor of The Washington Monthly. He has also exposed a wide range of corporate and government wrongdoing for The American Prospect, Salon, The Atlantic, In These Times, The Daily Beast, Mother Jones, Truthout, AlterNet and numerous other publications.
Dr. Victoria Walker
Victoria Walker MD, CMD is the Chief Medical and Quality Officer for the Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society, the largest non-profit provider of LTC and senior services. She began her career as a family practice physician in a small Midwestern community. After several years providing community care, she shifted to working in a psychiatric hospital, where she developed a special interest in caring for those with dementia with challenging neuropsychiatric symptoms, advanced illness care, and the medical director role. Dr. Walker is a Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Geriatrics at the University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine and is an APSA Congressional Health and Aging Policy Fellow. She is the National Coordinator of the Family Caregiver Platform Project.
Stacy Horn is a New York City based author, journalist and tech pioneer; she is the founder of one of the first online communities, EchoNYC.
Kathleen Doheny is a Los Angeles-based journalist specializing in health, fitness, and behavior topics. She contributes regularly to other web sites and to national magazines, including Senior Planet.
Among her writing awards is the Public Education Award For Excellence in Plastic Surgery Journalism from the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons and the American Podiatric Medical Association Shapiro Journalism Award. She contributed to a series of WebMD autism articles that won the team the Society of Professional Journalists' 2008 Sigma Delta Chi Award for Excellence in Journalism.
Jill Braunstein is the Director of Communications at the National Academy of Social Insurance. At NASI, Braunstein has been involved in the production, release, and dissemination of major research reports, briefs and fact sheets. Before joining NASI, Braunstein was Director of Communications at the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR), where she oversaw all aspects of communication, including the development and launch of their website.
Virge Randall is a staff writer and associate editor at SeniorPlanet.Org, writing features, creating surveys and polls, and finding the best in high and low culture for the NYC Events Calendar. A five- time public relations award winner, she is a freelance culture reporter and blogs about New York City life at newyorknatives.com, but don’t get her started about that.
Shawna De La Rosa
Shawna De La Rosa is a freelance writer living and working in the Seattle area. A true Pacific Northwestern, when she’s not writing she spends her time running, hiking, kayaking and watching her sons’ sporting events while holding an umbrella.
Teresa Ghilarducci is a labor economist and nationally-recognized expert in retirement security. She is the Bernard L. and Irene Schwartz professor of economics at The New School for Social Research and the Director of the Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA) and The New School’s Retirement Equity Lab (ReLab).
Alexander Zaitchik has written for The New Republic, The Nation, Salon, Rolling Stone, and Mother Jones. He lives in New Orleans.
Dr. Sarwat Jabeen
Dr. Jabeen practices family medicine and geriatrics in Sugar Land, Texas. In 2016, she joined the Memorial Hermann Family Medicine Residency program faculty. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Physicians Alliance.