Advancing Health Equity in America: A Conversation with Dora Hughes, MD, MPH

November 2, 2023

Dora Hughes, MD, MPH, currently serving as the Acting Chief Medical Officer of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), has long made it her mission to improve health and advance equity in health care systems across the country. 

After completing her residency in internal medicine at Brigham & Women’s Hospital, she opted for a "non-traditional" path, focusing on health policy with a keen eye towards access, quality, and equity. Her career spans multiple sectors, including service with late U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy and then-Senator Barack Obama, as well as work within the Obama Administration at the Department of Health and Human Services. 

A Focus on Health Equity

At CMS, Hughes has spearheaded the development and implementation of a health equity strategy that encompasses payment innovation, quality improvement, data analysis, and support for safety net providers. The future of healthcare, according to Hughes, hinges on the integration of community and clinical health interventions “to address the social needs of beneficiaries holistically.” To build a policy structure for such work, she has been deeply engaged in collaborative efforts within CMS as well as various federal agencies, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Health Resources and Services Administration, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the Administration for Community Living. These collaborations aim to share data, evidence-based practices, and provider tools that can foster better health outcomes.

Ahead of the 2023 Bloomberg American Health Summit, Hughes is excited about the opportunity to hear new ideas, the latest evidence, and recommendations from fellow experts in the field. Learn more about the Summit and tune in live on November 7, 2023 to view Dr. Hughes’s remarks. 


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