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The Affordable Care Act, Poverty, and Asset Building

This webinar, presented on May 1, 2013, discussed the impact of the Affordable Care Act on poverty and asset building. Presenters included Alan Weil, the Executive Director of the National Academy of State Health Policy; Reid Cramer, Director of Asset Building at the New America Foundation; and David Himmelstein, Professor of Public Health at Harvard University and Hunter College.



Alan Weil
Alan Weil
Executive Director
National Academy of State Health Policy

Alan Weil has been the executive director of the National Academy for State Health Policy (NASHP), an independent, non-partisan, nonprofit research and policy organization, since September 2004. Prior to joining NASHP, Mr. Weil served as director of the Urban Institute's Assessing the New Federalism project, one of the largest privately funded social policy research projects ever undertaken in the United States. He previously held a cabinet position as executive director of the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing, was health policy advisor to Colorado Governor Roy Romer, and was assistant general counsel in the Massachusetts Department of Medical Security. Mr. Weil is on the editorial board of the journal Health Affairs, and is a member of the Institute of Medicine's Board on Health Care Services, The Commonwealth Fund's Commission on a High Performance Health System, and the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Consumer Health Foundation in Washington, D.C., and of the Board of Directors of the National Public Health and Hospitals Institute. He is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, and Harvard Law School

Dr. David Himmelstein
David U. Himmelstein M.D.
Professor of Public Health, City University of New York at Hunter College
Visiting Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Himmelstein graduated from Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons, completed a medical residency at Highland Hospital in Oakland, California, a fellowship in General Internal Medicine at Harvard, and practiced primary care internal medicine at the public hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts for 28 years. He has authored or co-authored more than 100 journal articles and three books, including widely-cited studies of medical bankruptcy and the high administrative costs of the U.S. health care system. His 1984 study of patient dumping led to the enactment of the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA), the law that banned that practice. He co-founded Physicians for a National Health Program, whose 18,000 members advocate for non-profit, single payer national health insurance.

Reid Cramer
Reid Cramer
Director, Asset Building Program
New America Foundation

Reid Cramer is director of the Asset Building Program at the New America Foundation, which aims to promote policies and ideas that significantly broaden access to economic resources through increased savings and asset ownership, especially among lower-income families. His work has provided analytical support for the development of a range of policy proposals, including the ASPIRE Act, a bipartisan proposal to create a savings account for every newborn child in America, AutoSave, a unique model that automatically diverts payroll into flexible savings accounts, and The Saver’s Bonus, which provides a targeted incentive to contributed to savings products at tax time. He is an author of the Assets Agenda and the Assets Report 2012, which respectively highlight innovative policy proposals and federal policy initiatives related to asset building opportunities. Prior to joining New America, Dr. Cramer served as a policy and budget analyst at the Office of Management and Budget, where he helped coordinate policies on housing, savings, economic development, and program performance evaluation. He has worked for a range of nonprofit housing and community development organizations, the National Research Council, and the Urban Institute. He has a doctorate in public policy from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, as well as a master' degree in city and regional planning from the Pratt Institute and a bachelor of arts degree from Wesleyan University. 

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