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The North Bay Business Journal’s annual Health Care Industry Conference and Healthiest Companies Awards will include a panel discussion by leading health care executives.

The panelists are Judy Coffey, R.N., senior vice president and Sonoma-Marin area manager for Kaiser Permanente; Jon Friedenberg, chief administrative officer and president of the Marin General Hospital Foundation; Mike Purvis, chief administrative officer at Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital, and Todd Salnas, president St. Joseph Health, Sonoma County.

In anticipation of the conference, the Business Journal asked these health care leaders what kind of impact Covered California and the Affordable Care Act has had on their facility. Other potential topics for the panel Nov. 20 plans for new facilities and how organizations are extending care to the newly insured and the uninsured.

Here are the panelists responses on the impact of Covered California and the ACA:

Judy Coffey, R.N., senior vice president and Sonoma-Marin area manager for Kaiser Permanente’s Marin-Sonoma Service Area.

“Kaiser Permanente is pleased to again offer coverage through Covered California. Expanding access to affordable health coverage has been a core part of our mission for over 70 years, and Covered California has made access to health care a reality for more people than ever before.

We at Kaiser Permanente provide the same world-class, industry leading health care delivery system to Covered California members that millions of Californians already rely on for their health care needs.

Our participation in Covered California has also contributed to overall membership growth to more than 9,000 new members in our Marin-Sonoma area. Our medical offices, hospitals, and emergency departments have all seen increased utilization, and we are meeting the needs of our members and patients by hiring more clinical staff, including nurses, physicians, and mental health professionals, and transforming care through our unique integrated health care delivery system.”

Coffey is a Board Certified Registered Nurse and holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration. An active member in the community, Coffey serves on the American Heart Association National Hospital Accreditation Business Management Committee and Western States Affiliate Board, Sonoma County Health Action Council, Sonoma County Health Alliance, Sonoma County Workforce Investment Board, Empire College Board, United Way of the Wine Country Board, and is currently the Chair of the North Bay Hospital Council Board.

Jon Friedenberg, chief administrative officer and president of the Marin General Hospital Foundation.

“More patients in our community are covered for the care they need because of Covered California. As a result, Marin General Hospital (MGH) has experienced a reduction in both charity care and uncompensated care. The cost savings and payments related to health care for those who were once uninsured give the hospital an opportunity to better serve our constituents.

In addition to the traditional health plans (e.g. Blue Cross & Blue Shield), MGH has partnered with two at-risk programs, including a commercial plan called Western Health Advantage (WHA) and Partnership Health Plan (PHP) under the MediCal expansion program. Both programs have allowed MGH to successfully sign up new members, increasing those we treat by 15 to 20 percent each of the last two years. Also, our primary care physician network is experiencing an increase in the number of visits from those in our community who are enrolled in Covered California. These primary care visits allow our physicians to evaluate, diagnose and treat conditions at an early stage, thereby reducing unnecessary visits to the emergency department and in some cases, hospital admissions. Covered California is, in many ways, allowing us to keep more people in our community healthier.

The outlook for the future indicates that benefits the hospital and the community receive as a result of Covered California will continue into the foreseeable future.”

Friedenberg provides the overall direction for internal hospital operations at Marin General. Prior to joining MGH, he was vice president of El Camino Hospital, where he founded the Genomic Medicine Institute, South Asian Heart Center, and The Fogarty Institute for Innovation and the Center for Technology Integration. Friedenberg received his bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley, a master’s degree from UC Davis, and was a fellow at the Wexner Heritage Foundation. Friedenberg, who is married with two children, enjoys hiking with his family along Marin’s trails and coastline during his time away from the office.

Mike Purvis, chief administrative officer at Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital.

“The ACA has fundamentally changed how Americans purchase health insurance. Almost 22,000 Sonoma County residents signed up on Covered California of which 53 percent are between the ages of 45-64. Most enrollees have chosen the mid level/”silver” plan.

It is still early to understand the impact on the hospital of the additional insured. As is the case in most all emergency departments in California, we have seen a significant increase in volume but do not have specific evidence to credit this to the ACA.

It appears that we may be seeing fewer uninsured patients but it is still unclear on what the impact is.”

Purvis has served as CEO since September 2009. In this capacity, he develops and guides the strategic direction of the medical center and is responsible for sustaining long term clinical and business performance. Purvis also oversaw the development of Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital.

Purvis has more than 20 years experience leading both urban and rural non-profit community hospitals and health systems including serving as President/CEO of Saint Joseph’s Health System’s Humboldt Region and CEO with Baptist Hospitals and Health Systems in Phoenix Arizona. Purvis began his career practicing as a physical therapist providing direct patient care. He is a graduate of Portland State University with a masters of business administration degree.

“At St. Joseph Health, we consider access to health care to be integral to our mission of improving the health and quality of life of our neighbors. We’re pleased Covered California is helping to provide greater access to health care services for individuals and families.

Since its creation, we’ve experienced an increase in Medicaid discharges and a decrease in costs to care for the poor. This is fantastic news because it shows more people have insurance than ever before. In addition, St. Joseph Health as well as other healthcare providers nationwide have experienced reductions in payment from government programs to help in funding the expanded or subsidized coverage afforded by the Covered California program.

We’ve also added a Health Maintenance Organization, Western Health Advantage, and Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Plan, SCAN. These plans provide consumers with even more access to outstanding physicians and high quality care. And by working closely with community partners and across our hospitals and outpatient facilities, St. Joseph Health has created a stronger, more unified system of care that has served us well in this new health care environment.

We look forward to continuing to partner with our government agencies to work towards a health care model that heals the whole person-mind, body and spirit.”

Salnas became the president of St. Joseph Health, Sonoma County, in 2012, after serving three years as chief operating officer, assuming the top executive’s post for one of the county’s largest non-profit employers.

Recent achievements made by Salnas in this top leadership post include a remodel and expansion of Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital’s emergency department, a $15 million project that has added 40 percent more capacity at the region’s busiest trauma center; and negotiating the merger of Santa Rosa-based Redwood Regional Medical Group with St. Joseph Health. Salnas has also maintained a commitment to the mission of Catholic health care through collaborations with staff, physicians and community leaders to increase access to quality, safe, integrated and affordable care at all levels of the healthcare delivery system.

Salnas earned a dual master’s degree in business administration and health sciences administration from Arizona State University and a bachelor’s of science degree in health science from the University of Arizona. He has served in volunteer roles on numerous professional and civic committees including the American College of Healthcare Executives, the California Healthcare Executives, and locally on the St. Eugene Cathedral School Council.

A native of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, he lived in Arizona for more than 20 years before moving to Chino Hills, CA, in 2000. Todd, his wife, Jenny, and their three young children reside in Santa Rosa.