Devils in DC: Don Taylor & Fuqua’s Health Sector Management Program

Students and faculty in Fuqua’s Health Sector Management Program (HSM) traveled to DC last week as part of the program’s annual Week in DC (WIDC).  The WIDC course, HLTHMGMT716: Health Systems and Policy, brings daytime MBA, executive MBA, and MPP students to Washington to learn about health policy from members of Congress, agency officials, think tank fellows, and other senior health policy practitioners working on the front lines of health care policy.

The week-long program included a packed schedule of back-to-back speakers, and we spoke to HSM and Sanford School of Public Policy professor Don Taylor via Twitter on the heels of their visit last week:

@DukeFedRel:   What were you here to accomplish in DC this week?
@donaldhtaylorjr: Goal of week in DC was to expose students to the way politics and policy impacts the health sector

 What were some of the highlights?
@donaldhtaylorjr: Meeting w top officials in CMS, w Senator Burr& Rep Butterfield, & VP govt relations of Fortune 500 firm
@donaldhtaylorjr: The students were very engaged and Fuqua staff Simeon Furman and Kate Miller did incredible job w logistics
@donaldhtaylorjr: Thanks to Chris Simmons + Alyssa Dack with scheduling

Learn anything new or surprising from these in-person meetings?
@donaldhtaylorjr: The degree to which the private sector says there is no going back re health reform. The question is what next?

What IS next? Good luck writing that in 140 characters.
@donaldhtaylorjr: A political deal is inevitable. Question is when do political winds line up for technical tweaks. Post 2014
@donaldhtaylorjr: Biggest biz oppty is intervening in the lives of vulnerable to avoid hospital. Low tech, low cost, quicker sink or swim

Will the trip impact your own research or teaching?
@donaldhtaylorjr: Trip reinforced that my research focus on hospice/palliative care is where my focus belongs; been value focused for long time

 And what impact do you think the week had on the students?
@donaldhtaylorjr: Greater appreciation that politics and policy impact business; truncates what is possible

You met with practitioners on both sides of the aisle and representing different perspectives. Any evidence of way forward?
@donaldhtaylorjr: In off the record discussions there is more overlap between Ds & Rs than appears in many public statements. Key is when do politics allow it

Well here’s hoping some progress will be made by next year’s WIDC. Thanks for speaking with us!
@donaldhtaylorjr: You are welcome