Put a Lid on It: Containing Long Term Services and Supports Costs

Friday, August 17th
8:30am – 10:00am

Long-term services and supports (LTSS) comprise a significant portion of state Medicaid budgets, and spending is expected to accelerate as the older adult population increases. Some states are continuing efforts to rebalance their LTSS budgets and implement managed LTSS care, while other states are developing and implementing new strategies to contain future LTSS costs. While one speaker discusses a range of options, state officials describe their initiatives, including expanding eligibility for community services to delay or avoid use of institutional LTSS.


Marie Zimmerman, State Medicaid Director, State of Minnesota

Marie Zimmerman State Medicaid Director has devoted over a decade to public-sector health care in Minnesota, spearheading critical reforms and innovations that have been watched and emulated nationally. Appointed Minnesota’s Medicaid director in 2014, Marie oversees the strategic policy direction and the core business functions of Medicaid and the Basic Health Program (BHP), called MinnesotaCare. The combined budgets of Medicaid and MinnesotaCare topped $11.5 billion in 2016 and provide health coverage to 1 in 5 Minnesotans, delivering health care, behavioral health services and long-term services and supports to more than one million people.
During Marie’s tenure, the state has saved over $1.5 billion through managed care reform and purchasing innovations. Savings include $213 million related to improved health outcomes for Medicaid enrollees through an accountable care model called Integrated Health Partnerships; a collaborative, patient-focused approach to delivering care while lowering cost. In addition, Marie has managed a successful Basic Health Program that provides affordable and comprehensive coverage for lower-income Minnesotans who do not qualify for Medicaid. Prior to her service as Medicaid director, Marie acted as health care policy director for the Minnesota Department of Human Services, where she led early efforts to reform health care purchasing for Medicaid, moving the state toward a pay-for-value model.
Marie is a recipient of the Women in Health Care Leadership Award from Women’s Health Leadership TRUST. She serves on the boards of the National Academy for State Health Policy and the National Association of Medicaid Directors.
Marie lives in Minneapolis with her family. She holds a Master of Public Policy from the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs and earned a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science from the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota.



Beth Kidder, Deputy Secretary for Medicaid, Agency for Health Care Administration

Ms. Kidder is the Deputy Secretary for Medicaid at Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration. She has served in state Medicaid programs for twenty years and has led Florida’s Medicaid program since 2017. Florida Medicaid provides health and long-term care services to almost four million low income Floridians primarily through a managed care delivery system. Her expertise is in managed care, long-term care services, coverage policies, and quality improvement. Ms. Kidder holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida and a Master of Public Policy from Duke University.


Jami Snyder, Deputy Director, Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System

Jami Snyder serves as the Deputy Director for the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS), Arizona’s Medicaid program, providing a full range of health care services and supports for 1.9 million Arizonans at a cost of $12 billion annually. Prior to her current role, Ms. Snyder served as the Medicaid Director for the state of Texas. She has over 18 years of experience in the health and human services industries, including extensive regulatory experience stemming from her tenure with the Texas Medicaid program as well as her prior service at both AHCCCS and the Arizona Department of Health Services, where she was charged with overseeing the state’s Medicaid-contracted health plans and ensuring compliance with established federal and state managed care mandates. Ms. Snyder holds a master’s degree in political science from Arizona State University. She earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Gustavus Adolphus College.


Michelle Soper, Director of Integrated Care, Center for Health Care Strategies

Michelle Herman Soper, MHS, is director of integrated care at the Center for Health Care Strategies. She leads CHCS’ work focused on improving care delivery and financing for individuals who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid and those in need of long term services and supports. Prior to CHCS, Ms. Soper held positions at the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC), and the Office of Chronic and Long-Term Care within the District of Columbia’s Department of Health Care Finance. Ms. Soper has a master’s degree in health science from The Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene


Lynn Blewett, Professor, SHADAC / University of Minnesota

Lynn A. Blewett, Ph.D., is Professor of Health Policy at the University of Minnesota, School of Public Health and director of the State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC), a multidisciplinary research and policy center that provides data analytics and policy analysis to inform better decision making. She has over 25 years of health policy experience including working for Senator Dave Durenberger in the U.S. Senate, serving as Minnesota’s State Health Economist, and was appointed by Governor Mark Dayton to serve on the Minnesota Health Care Financing Task Force. She works with state policy analysts and decision makers to understand trends in health insurance coverage, Medicaid payment reform and financing LTSS. Professor Blewett currently serves on the board of Portico HealthNet, a local coverage program for the uninsured. She is a member of the National Academy of Social Insurance and previously served on the Scientific Advisory Committee for the National Center for Health Statistics and on the boards of AcademyHealth and the University of Minnesota’s teaching hospital. Dr. Blewett has an MA in public affairs and a PhD in Health Services Research and Policy from the University of Minnesota.