TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 22, 2022
Holidays & Mental Health: Interventions, Treatment & EquityIt’s a joyous time, as families begin to gather for Thanksgiving. But experts also say the holidays see a rise in mental health and addiction issues. This week we present an encore interview with Patrick Kennedy, a former member of Congress and a nationally acclaimed mental health and addiction advocate. He’s the founder of The Kennedy Forum, which seeks to revolutionize health care. Kennedy discusses with hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter his insights about how families are key for interventions and the role policymakers can play in creating mental health parity.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 2022
Alzheimer's Foundation Head Discusses Breakthroughs: Can Biomarkers & Vaccines Offer Hope?Dr. Howard Fillit, the Co-Founder and Chief Science Officer of the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation, focuses the nonprofit on supporting scientists around the globe who are investigating novel drugs to prevent, treat and cure Alzheimer’s disease.He explains to hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter how those investments are paying dividends in terms of diagnostic tools and treatments and why the upcoming holidays are a perfect time to assess if a loved one is showing signs of dementia.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 2022
What Does Shark Tank’s Mark Cuban Know About Fixing Health Care? Are There Lessons for All of Us?Billionaire Mark Cuban never holds back his opinions on TV’s “Shark Tank” and now he’s trying to take a bite out of the health care sector — it might be his biggest challenge yet. Cuban understands he’s up against entrenched lobbyists and bureaucrats as he tries to reform how Americans purchase their pharmaceuticals.Hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter ask Cuban to explain his venture Cost Plus Drugs, its financial model and how some insurers are already joining in.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2022
Dr. Fauci Prepares for His Next Steps; Offers Leadership Lessons to Younger GenerationDr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief medical advisor to President Biden, tells “Conversations on Health Care” that he’s thinking about what occurs after he leaves his position at the end of the year. Fauci says he’s strictly adhering to ethical rules and not negotiating for any position until after he leaves the government but he broadly wants to utilize his 54 years of experience at the National Institutes of Health for writing, lecturing and serving in an advisory capacity to inspire the younger generation to pursue their interests in medicine, science and public health.Hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter note that this is Fauci’s fifth interview with them since the pandemic began and they again use the opportunity to ask him about the latest COVID details.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2022
'Dopesick' Author on Opioid Treatment InnovationsThe data show that 80,816 people died in the U.S. from overdose deaths involving opioids in 2021 - a tremendous loss. But what hope can medical experts, policymakers and law enforcement officers take to stem the trend?Award-winning author Beth Macy, who wrote the acclaimed book 'Dopesick' about the origins of the opioid crisis, now has a book exploring innovative thinking and breakthrough approaches.She joins hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter to discuss "Raising Lazarus: Hope, Justice, and the Future of America's Overdose Crisis."
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 21, 2022
All of Your Health Information Is Now a Right Not a Privilege - ONC Head Tells Us MoreAs of October 6, 2022, all health care organizations in the United States are legally required to give patients unrestricted access to all their health records in a digital format.Micky Tripathi, Ph.D., National Coordinator for Health IT at the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, is excited about this change and its ability to empower patients. Yet the free flow of data also poses security risks. He tells hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter what protections Americans can take and the incredible opportunities health IT offers us during this time of medical challenges.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 14, 2022
Your Vote & Health Care: Why It MattersEarly voting has already started in some parts of the United States as Americans make important decisions about who they want to represent them. The polls show that health-related issues are some of the most important ones to voters this year. We discuss health care on the ballot with policy experts from two prominent Washington D.C. think tanks.Joseph Antos, Ph.D., with the American Enterprise Institute and Emily Gee, Ph.D., with the Center for American Progress join hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter to discuss health care on the ballot.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6, 2022
Health Care on the Ballot: What’s at Stake Nov. 8?In less than five weeks Americans should know the outcome of the midterm elections. Will overturning Roe v. Wade propel Democrats to surprise wins? Will Republicans seize the moment with their vision of how to fix health care? Sheryl Gay Stolberg with The New York Times and Victoria Knight with Axios examine how the November results will likely impact health care policy in the next two years and beyond. They’re guests this week on “Conversations on Health Care” with hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2022
How Will We Know When the Pandemic is Over? Brown Univ. Pandemic Center Director ExplainsDr. Jennifer Nuzzo leads the Pandemic Center at the Brown University School of Public Health; she was initially hired for the role by Dr. Ashish Jha, who is now the White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator. Dr. Nuzzo tells hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter that COVID remains a fairly significant health threat, especially in terms of possible variants, but we’re not in the same situation we were two years ago. She reacts to President Biden’s recent statements about the state of the pandemic and believes one way to assess its end is how people are living today.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2022
White House Preview: How Can We Tackle Hunger, Nutrition, and Health?Wednesday, Sept. 28, the Biden-Harris Administration will host the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health, the first one in over 50 years. What will the experts and community leaders discuss? How will we reach the goal of ending U.S. hunger and reducing diet-related diseases in a majority of Americans by 2030?“Conversations on Health Care” hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter get answers from Dan Glickman, the former Secretary of Agriculture, and Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, a renowned expert on food systems. They’re co-chairs of an independent effort to inform America’s leaders as the attendees prepare for this important day.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2022
Who’s Community Health Centers’ Top Ally? Powerful House Leader Makes the CaseMajority Whip James Clyburn, the third-most powerful Democrat in the U.S. House, makes a passionate case for community health centers. His goal is to get a center within commuting distance of each American. “Every time legislation comes forward on health care I’m always trying to figure out how we can get community health centers to benefit from this legislation…not satisfied with where we are because we are not where we need to be yet,” he says.Clyburn also confirms to hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter that President Biden’s cancer moonshot will have the “rocket fuel” it needs to succeed and he responds to critics of the Inflation Reduction Act. Join us as we kick off our 14th season with this important conversation.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 2022
Monkeypox Update from Top White House CoordinatorDr. Demetre Daskalakis, White House National Monkeypox Response Deputy Coordinator, joins “Conversations on Health Care” to discuss the latest details about this rare, infectious viral disease. Dr. Daskalakis talks with hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter about the spread of the disease in the U.S., the vaccination efforts, and how the entire health care community is careful to avoid stigmatizing any community while focusing on the virus itself.
MONDAY, AUGUST 29, 2022
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky on COVID Fall Booster DetailsCDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky and colleagues will soon review data for the new bivalent booster shot for COVID; she says it relates to very small changes in the mRNA sequence and that “shouldn’t impact safety at all…if we wait for those data to emerge in human data…not just mice data but human data…we would be using what I would consider to be a potentially outdated vaccine…it’s best to use a vaccine that’s tailored to the variant we have right now.” Still, Dr. Walensky urges anyone who’s eligible to get the current booster right now while the U.S. government reviews the bivalent research. She points out that most of the cases of severe disease and death from COVID are unvaccinated or under-vaccinated people. “We have now given over 600 million doses of this vaccine in this country so we have an extraordinary safety profile, probably unlike any we’ve seen with any vaccine in history.” Listen in to this important conversation with hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 23, 2022
Former CDC Director Dr. Frieden’s Thoughts on Dr. Fauci and His Next ChapterFormer Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Dr. Tom Frieden shares his thoughts about the news Dr. Anthony Fauci will soon leave government service. Frieden explains how the next director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases will need to be realistic that he or she will have big shoes to fill.Frieden, who now leads the nonprofit Resolve to Save Lives, also tells hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter that he endorses an independent commission to review what happened during the COVID pandemic. He was interviewed as part of a CDC review and he lays out what must change in terms of its mission, approach and budget.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 18, 2022
USAID Global Health Leader Atul Gawande Addresses Global Partners’ Concerns Over Women’s Reproductive RightsDr. Atul Gawande, Assistant Administrator for Global Health at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), joins us to share how countries are responding to the U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade.He says, “There have been some instances of concern about a possible chilling effect…I’ve been in touch to address questions and meet with our partners…the United States is the largest supporter of family planning around the world…we are the leading experts in how to ensure modernized forms of family planning women reach the world, making sure women have rights and that voluntary family planning is a critical right.”Hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter also ask him about USAID’s efforts involving COVID and the war in Ukraine.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 9. 2022
He Helped Eradicate Smallpox - Listen to His Concerns About MonkeypoxRenowned epidemiologist and innovator Dr. Larry Brilliant says we’ve entered an “age of pandemics” as the Biden administration declares the monkeypox outbreak a public health emergency.Dr. Brilliant is the chair of the advisory board of Ending Pandemics, a nonprofit working to find outbreaks faster around the world. His expertise is a result of his success in helping the World Health Organization eradicate smallpox in the 1970s.He also discusses with hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter the limits of the mRNA vaccines for COVID and why a nasal spray is needed.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 4, 2022
Are Long Covid Patients Exaggerating? Biden Top Doctor Says No: “Long COVID is real”U.S. health officials now estimate 7–23 million Americans have developed Long COVID, which can last weeks or months.Admiral Rachel L. Levine, MD, Assistant Secretary for Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, joins “Conversations on Health Care” to push back against Long COVID doubters. She says, “We don’t know exactly what is causing Long COVID, it might not be one thing, but Long COVID is real and those patients need support and they need treatment. We want to emphasize that patients are not malingering but we don’t know exactly what causes it. It might be a chronic infection with COVID-19 or a chronic inflammatory response.”Admiral Levine is hopeful research will provide more answers for Long COVID and other conditions that are similar. She also discusses the latest on monkeypox, access to reproductive health and LGBTQ+ issues with hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter.
THURSDAY, JULY 28, 2022
West Alabama Women’s Center Director Talks About the Impact of RoeThe Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization decision, overturning a constitutional right to abortion, has led to abortion services ending at West Alabama Women’s Center, Inc., in Tuscaloosa.The clinic’s director, Robin Marty, explains that the states making abortion illegal are also the ones blocking Medicaid expansion. She says their idea appears to be that “It’s too expensive to give people health care but you can force them to give birth against their will.”Amanda Allen is senior counsel and director of The Lawyering Project, which is a nonprofit that uses the law to “improve abortion access and uphold the rights and dignity of people seeking and providing abortion care.” She reports that her team is devastated by the Supreme Court decision but they’re “doubling down on our efforts to help providers, to help the patients they serve…there are people out there who need our help.” Join Conversations on Health Care hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter for this important discussion.
THURSDAY, JULY 21, 2022
Dr. Eric Topol: COVID BA.5 variant "worst we've seen"Dr. Eric Topol, one of the most prominent and prolific COVID experts, provides his thoughts on the COVID BA.5 subvariant. He says, “it’s the worst variant… [because of] the immune escape…the ability to have growth, fitness and advantages that we haven’t seen before…the properties are getting worse…and lasting longer. The virus has not finished its evolutionary arc. There’s more to come, unfortunately.”Conversations on Health Care hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter also talk to Dr. Topol about Dr. Anthony Fauci’s legacy, Paxlovid resistance and monkeypox.
THURSDAY, JULY 14, 2022
How VA Innovation Affects the Entire Health Care SystemThe U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs operates the nation’s largest integrated health care system. But how much do you know about how well VA Medical Centers and clinics identify innovative therapies, practices and policies and then diffuse them across a large footprint? Ryan Vega, MD, MSHA, leads the Innovation Ecosystem within the Veterans Health Administration. This initiative focuses on being the catalyst for enabling the discovery and spread of mission-driven health care innovation to advance care delivery and service.Dr. Vega highlights point-of-care manufacturing and its 3D Printing Network that were essential during the early days of COVID and the VA’s history of deploying the first cardiac pacemaker.Conversations on Health Care hosts Mark Masselli and Margaret Flinter talk to Dr. Vega about these breakthroughs, how they help the entire health care sector and where the VA is partnering with Federally Qualified Health Centers.
Episodes - Community Health Center Presents Conversations on Health Care
Conversations on Health Care is a radio show about the opportunities for reform and innovation in the health care system.