- Work Email: INTERNET
- Work Phone: (212) 575-5929work
A recognized expert in Medicaid, health reform and patient-centered primary care, Denise Soffel brings more than 25 years of health policy analysis and advocacy experience to HMA.
As the executive director for the New York State Senate Committee on Health, Denise was the lead legislative advisor on health policy and budget issues for the third most populous state in America. She championed reform of New York State Medicaid eligibility and enrollment. Leading a coalition of consumer advocates and Medicaid health plans, and working in close collaboration with state and local Medicaid officials, Denise systematically tackled the issue . Focus groups, survey research and key informant interviews identified the barriers that individuals experienced when trying to enroll in Medicaid. She led the research of the legal underpinnings, review of other state programs and negotiations with state Medicaid staff. She also educated elected officials about the cost of inefficiency. Today, the result is a dramatically streamlined, consumer-friendly process that has significantly reduced administrative burdens on county social service staff.
While working with the National Center for Law and Economic Justice, Denise advocated for expanded public health coverage and streamlining Medicaid enrollment, eligibility and renewal policies. Denise spent her early career implementing high-impact consumer health education initiatives for the Community Service Society – an advocacy, research and direct service organization focused on breaking the cycle of intergenerational poverty among low-income New Yorkers. She also spent five years working in hospital and community health planning for the NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation – the largest public hospital system in the country.
Denise earned her PhD and master’s degree in public administration from New York University’s Wagner Graduate School of Public Service and her bachelor’s degree from Clark University. She was also a postdoctoral fellow in the Pew Health Policy Program at the Institute for Health Policy Studies at the University of California, San Francisco.