Affordable Care Act Breakfast and Forum to be held in Presque Isle May 10

Posted April 23, 2013, at 9:25 a.m.
Last modified April 23, 2013, at 9:58 a.m.

Friday, May 10, 2013 7:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Location: UMPI CAMPUS CENTER, 181 Main St , Presque Isle, ME

For more information: Judy Dinsmore; (207) 498-8736;

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — Faced with complying next year with the federal Affordable Care Act many business owners say they are confused about the new law and how it will affect the bottom line. To clear up some of the confusion a workshop on understanding the Affordable Care Act will be held May 10 from 7:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the University of Maine at Presque Isle Campus Center.

“As we prepare for the full implementation of the Affordable Care Act, businesses, organizations and individuals throughout Aroostook County have many questions about the resulting impact,” said TAMC Director of Advancement Jason Parent, who is a co-organizer of the event. “Although there are still a number of unknowns, there is a general idea of where the ‘puck’ is going. The intent of the countywide collaborative that has come together to organize this half-day workshop is to better help folks ‘skate’ in that direction.”

The event is a collaborative effort of multiple groups and individuals including, Houlton Regional Hospital, The Aroostook Medical Center, Cary Medical Center, Northern Maine Medical Center, Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems, Pines Health Services, NESHRM, Aroostook County Chambers of Commerce, Maine Community Heath Options, University of Maine Presque Isle and LEADers Encouraging Aroostook Development.

“The Affordable Care Act has many significant changes to the way our health care system works and we at LEAD feel that it is important to give our membership an opportunity to hear directly about what many of these changes are, said LEAD Executive Director Ryan Pelletier. “LEAD is happy to partner with several health care institutions and others to bring this worthwhile and informative session to The County.”

The session will feature an opening and closing keynote address, breakout sessions for small and large businesses and two opportunities to view displays and interact with various health care industry vendors.

Michelle Hood, President and CEO of Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems (EMHS), will offer the first keynote address. Before arriving at EMHS in 2006, Hood was president and CEO of the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Health System, Montana Region, as well as president and CEO of its flagship hospital, St. Vincent Healthcare. She received her Bachelor of Science in 1978 at Purdue University and her Master of Health Care Administration at Georgia State University in 1981. EMHS is a regional healthcare system serving all of central, eastern, and northern Maine.

Providing the closing keynote is Barbra Leonard, Vice President for Programs for the Maine Health Access Foundation (MeHAF). MeHAF, established in 2000, is Maine’s largest health-focused philanthropy. Each year MeHAF provides approximately $4 – 5 million in grants and program funding to promote access to quality health care, especially for those who are uninsured and medically underserved, and to improve the health of all Maine residents. Leonard has been with the organization since October 2007.

Leading the breakout session for small business will be Shawn Brennan, Vice President of Sales Barresi Benefits Group and Scott Taggersell, Director of Business Development Maine Community Health Options. Brennan is responsible for the sales and management of large group plans including self-insured cases, Brennan works with his accounts to implement corporate wellness programs and total health management. Taggersell has leadership experience in marketing, sales, strategic planning, communications and client relations in an array of healthcare provider and payer settings. Before joining MCHO he worked as director of sales and marketing at NorDx for nearly 14 years.

Leading the large business breakout session will be Max Lynds, Vice President of Life and Benefits F.A. Peabody Company. Lynds joined the F.A Peabody Co. in 1993 and has since helped business and individual clients reduce risks with cost effective insurance and financial products. In addition to insurance he is also a Registered Representative with a Series 6 Securities License.

The agenda for the workshop is as follows:

• 7:30 a.m. Heart Healthy Breakfast

• 7:45 a.m. – Welcome/Introduction

• 8-9 a.m. Keynote: Michelle Hood, President and CEO Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems

• 9-9:15 a.m. Vendor Fair

• 9:15-10 a.m. Breakout Sessions:

Small Business Group – Shawn Brennan, Vice President of Sales Barresi Benefits Group and Scott Taggersell, Director Business Development Maine Community Health Options

Large Business Group – Max Lynds, Vice President of Life and Benefits F.A. Peabody Company

• 10-10:15 a.m. Vendor Fair

• 10:15-11 a.m. Closing Keynote: Barbara Leonard, Vice President for Programs Maine Health Access Foundation

The cost for the workshop is $10, which includes the heart healthy breakfast. Pre-registration is required. To access the online registration system go to Judy Dinsmore at Northern Maine Development Commission is also taking registration. She can be reached at 498-8736 or by email at