2019 Spring Conference Rewind General Sessions

Daily Highlights


General Sessions


Attendees Only

Opening General Session

Day two of the 2019 NIC Spring Conference launched with the highly anticipated keynote given by former Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan. He gave an encouraging perspective on the state of the U.S. economy, listed Congress’ accomplishments of the last few years, and reminded his audience of decision-makers in seniors housing & care of the enduring strength of the American system of government – and the American dream. He also was critical of those in Washington, D.C. who employ divisive politics, rather than working together, across the aisle, to seek solutions.

In the following fireside chat with John J. Kelliher, the conversation turned to policy, and what this sector should look for in the coming few years. The two policy experts discussed how Medicare Advantage programs will continue to grow as we move towards a value-based system, and how the immigration system must be reformed, among numerous other topics of interest.

The discussion continued with a follow-up session moderated by Kelliher. Joined by policy experts Chris Jennings and Charlotte Ivancic, Ryan’s remarks were discussed in more detail, with an emphasis on the behind-the-scenes policy discussions that will likely result from the political realities described by the former Speaker.



Conference Luncheon

In the lunchtime keynote, Futurist Ian Morrison compared health care in the U.S. to single-payor systems in other countries. “We don’t get much more stuff for our health care spending, we just pay much, much more for it,” he said. The average American family cannot afford to pay the annual premiums on the average American health insurance plan. And for many health systems, Medicare and Medicaid pays for 70% of the patients, but private insurance payments generate 70% of the profits.

So how can we fix our broken system? Technology will allow for greater population segmentation. Risk-sharing payment models will incent players to get smarter and more efficient. Data analysis will allow us to focus on the 5% of patients who account for 50% of all spending, and payors will increasingly cover non-traditional services – including housing and other social determinants of health – to keep these “frequent fliers” out of the hospital.

In a follow-on conversation session after his keynote, Morrison continued his comments on the U.S. healthcare system. He pointed out that shared savings plans can be problematic for companies that only offer a single service – for instance, a standalone SNF – because if your great work keeps people healthier longer and consequently generates savings for their hospital, you may not see any value from that work.



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