CareOregon SPIRIT
Articles FYI Very Useful Websites Archive

Member Advisory Council makes CareOregon better

Council members attend national conference

Council members attend national conference
CareOregon's Member Advisory Council (MAC) was represented at the recent Institute for Patient and Family Centered Care Conference, held in Annapolis, Maryland. The conference focused on creating effective partnerships between patients, consumers, families and health care professionals by using the power of personal stories to transform care delivery.

Three CareOregon MAC members attended the conference, along with Community Advisory Council members from two of our partner CCOs – Columbia Pacific and PrimaryHealth of Josephine County. All participated in presentations about transforming the health care system to better serve those who have a catastrophic health event. The conference also looked at psychiatric hospital services for children, health care access disparities, cultural diversity issues, peer-to-peer mentoring programs and the value of storytelling in changing the health care system.

MAC members said they greatly benefitted from the educational experience and will use their new knowledge to inspire other members to take a more active role in their care.

Those who made the journey also took time to see the many historic sites and landmarks in the area, including the U.S. Naval Academy and The Capitol.

Alison Hoyt represents the MAC at Oregon Legislature
Alison Hoyt, a new addition to the Member Advisory Committee, is a powerful public speaker who testified before an Oregon State legislative committee in April. Alison's six children have repeatedly been bounced between the Oregon Health Plan and private insurance whenever her partner was laid off from his job as an electrical tradesperson. She testified about House Bill 2132, concerning the “churn” of Oregon Health Plan members, who fall in and out of Medicaid eligibility because of fluctuations in income. Because of that problem, Alison’s time is often consumed transferring her children’s medical records between providers with each disenrollment. It’s a confusing and difficult to process.

Alison’s story was so powerful, that when Rep. Jason Conger brought the bill to the floor of the House, he used Alison’s testimony to convey the importance of a seamless transition between Medicaid and private insurance. “In my second life, I want to be a lobbyist,” Alison said after she finished testifying. The bill passed without discussion, 58-0. Alison’s achievement was applauded by the entire MAC, and other members also travelled to Salem to talk to legislators about health care reform.