Ms. Nora Aljohni (nutrition PhD), Dr. Lisa Simpson, President and CEO, Academy Health, and Mr. Nygel Williams (health services master’s student) 

February 2, 2017

The annual Academy Health National Health Policy Conference brings together hundreds of participants from all aspects of the health care industry and the health policy-making process. The School of Public Health’s Department of Health Services Administration had several representatives attend the 2017 conference held January 30 - 31, 2017 in Washington, D.C.

Professor Stephen Thomas, who is also director of the Maryland Center for Health Equity, chaired a panel on “Reimagining Health Equity” which focused on expanding the definition of health equity to engage more groups in the effort to eliminate health disparities. 

The conference's theme, “First Look at the Evidence, Politics and Priorities Shaping Health Policy in 2017,” anticipates changes that may take place with the new White House administration and Congress. Members of Congress, including Nancy Pelosi, Minority Leader of the House of Representatives (D-Ca), and Senators Tim Kaine (D-Va)  and Bill Cassidy (R-La) were keynote speakers, along with other leaders in health policy, health journalism and health care management. 

Nygel Williams, a Master of Health Administration student, attended the conference and said, “It was reassuring to be among so many thought leaders in health care and know that they are committed to making sure that everything is going to be okay, especially in a time where there is so much uncertainty on where national health policy is going to go.” 

Other University of Maryland students attended the conference, including Ms. Nora Aljohni, who is a doctoral student in the Department of Nutrition (College of Agriculture and Natural Resources) and a graduate assistant for the Center for Health Equity. 

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Stephen B. Thomas, Nygel Williams