Baldacci aide named to US health panel

Posted Jan. 04, 2010, at 9:01 p.m.
(Trish Riley, director of the Governor's Office of Healthy Policy and Finance)  (AP Photo/Pat Wellenbach)
AP
(Trish Riley, director of the Governor's Office of Healthy Policy and Finance) (AP Photo/Pat Wellenbach)

Trish Riley, director of the Governor’s Office of Health Policy and Finance and principal architect of the state’s Dirigo Health Reform program, has been named to a new federal panel charged with guiding policy in the Medicaid program and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP.

Riley is one of 17 individuals selected from around the nation for their health policy expertise and their geographic diversity, according to an announcement last week from the U.S. Government Accountability Office.

The Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission was established by the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009, which extended health coverage to millions of youngsters age 18 and younger whose families earn too much to qualify for Medicaid but not enough to purchase commercial cov-erage.

In Maine, children from families with annual incomes of between 130 percent and 200 percent of the federal poverty level qualify for CHIP. Children from lower-income families qualify for Medicaid. The federal poverty level in 2009 was $22,050 for a family of four.

Before her appointment by Gov. John Baldacci to head his new health policy office, Riley served as executive director of the Portland-based National Academy for State Health Policy and as president of its corporate board. Under four Maine governors she has held appointed positions, including executive director of the Maine Committee on Aging, associate deputy commissioner of health and medical services, director of the Bureau of Maine’s Elderly, and director of the Bureau of Medical Services, which encompassed planning activities for Medicaid.

A native of Massachusetts, Riley earned a Master of Science degree in community development from the University of Maine.

mhaskell@bangordailynews.net

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