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News & Updates

United States of Care Celebrates 5 Years

Published On May 4, 2023

Dear Health Care: Do Better

On April 27th, 2023, we hosted “Dear Health Care: Do Better,” United States of Care’s five-year anniversary conference and celebration. At USofCare, we know that people need to be at the center of change in our health care system, so we gathered the best and brightest in health care, advocacy, business, and politics to do what we’ve been doing for five years, and that’s listening loudly. 

This is how we advance impact.

At our convening, we learned that action is not only possible but that we are already driving change in the states and nationwide…and you know what? We’re just getting started.

Our co-founders Natalie Davis and Andy Slavitt kicked the conference off with a conversation about the organization’s five-year milestone, and Natalie’s current priorities and perspectives on health care in this country as CEO. 

United States of Care CEO & Co-Founder Natalie Davis and USofCare Co-Founder and Board Chair Emeritus Andy Slavitt
United States of Care CEO & Co-Founder Natalie Davis and USofCare Co-Founder and Board Chair Emeritus Andy Slavitt.

Then our very own Venice Haynes led a panel with our Voices of Real Life on the power of listening and USofCare’s unique people-centered research approach and findings. Yvette McDaniel, DMA described the lack of access to health care facilities facing her community in rural South Carolina (lack of transportation, few practitioners, high costs), and Omar Alejandro Ibarra, MPH, described his experiences as a child translating information from doctors to his Spanish-speaking parents. 

United States of Care’s Venice Haynes, Ph.D., Caring Across Generations’s Rebekah Azaylia Alexander-Fishburne, Grapevine Health CEO Lisa Fitzpatrick, MD, MPH, MPA.
Yvette McDaniel, DMA and Omar Alejandro Ibarra, MPH.

Reed Abelson, with the New York Times, spoke to Andrew McKechnie of Tiber Creek Group and Tiffani V. Williams of The Daschle Group about the bipartisan opportunities at the federal level to advance health care reform (they exist!).

Left to right: Reed Abelson from the New York Times, Andrew McKechnie from the Tiber Group, and Tiffani V. Williams from the Daschle Group.

Waxman Strategies’ Claire McAndrew spoke with Liz Hagan of USofCare and Isabel Cruz of Colorado Consumer Health Initiative about how innovation in the states leads to policy advancements at the federal level. 

Left to right: Colorado Consumer Health Initiative’s Isabel Cruz, USofCare’s Liz Hagan, and Waxman Strategies’ Claire McAndrew.

And Allison Aubrey, from NPR, led a conversation with business leaders about how entrepreneurs are pushing the status quo to innovate new solutions that maximize the value people derive from their health care. 

Left to right: NPR’s Allison Aubrey, UsofCare’s Board of Directors Nick Laporcaro, Google’s Kartikeya Swami, Cityblock Health CEO Toyin Ajayi, MD, and Archangels CEO Alexandra Drane.

We heard from Representative Lauren Underwood, who spoke about the Black Maternal Health Mominbus Act – which would comprehensively address the drivers of the nation’s maternal health crisis – the bill’s chances of passing (she’s confident!), and her commitment to protecting rural hospitals around the country. 

Congresswoman Lauren Underwood [right] and United States of Care Board Member Katrina S. Forrest [left], Co-Executive Director at CityHealth.

After hearing from CMS Principal Deputy Administrator Jon Blum and CNN’s Maria Cardona, we had a surprise motivational (and adorable) word from A, whose mother is Meena Seshamani, Director of the Center for Medicare, who encouraged us all by emphasizing that the true superheroes are the doctors and nurses doing the hard work across the country. 

CNN’s Maria Cardona [right] and CMS Principal Deputy Administrator Jonathan Blum [left].

This doesn’t even touch the surface of all that was discussed last week, and the conference underscored how the health care system is failing all of us, but emphasized that the solutions are possible through listening and centering people in their own care.

Ultimately, we all just want to live healthy and full lives. We can only do that by working together to develop a health care system that is affordable, dependable, personalized, and understandable.

Our Victories

During the conference, we also celebrated all the wins US of Care has accomplished over our five-year history.

Our Conference At-A-Glance

For those who weren’t able to join us, check out the incredible work of Yolanda Liman, our visual scribe, who captured the conference via a graphic drawing. 

Just (US)ofCare

After an incredible day, our team gathered to unpack everything we learned and discuss what was next.

Huge shoutout to our amazing team who made it all happen below, along with our mascot, Charlie [top right].