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Crowell & Moring Unveils Digital-Focused Health Care Consultancy

Jan. 26, 2022, 11:00 AM

Crowell & Moring is launching a new consulting services arm for health care organizations and technology companies.

Crowell Health Solutions will be led by a trio of the firm’s partners with decades of experience across the health care industry, the firm said Wednesday. The consultancy is targeting companies with an emphasis on digital innovation, value-based care, and health equity.

Jodi Daniel, a former director of health information technology policy at the Health and Human Services Department, and Troy Barsky, a former Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services official, will serve as managing directors in Crowell’s newest endeavor. Janet Walker, a former in-house counsel at health care system Ascension, has also been named a managing director.

Over the last few years there’s been an enormous amount of change and innovation in health care space, Daniel said in an interview, along with financial investment and movement toward more value-based care. Technology advances have created several new options for providing care, improving diagnosis, treatment care coordination and population health management, she said.

“We realized that there was an opportunity to partner with our health care clients and with technology companies through all phases of the development of this innovation based on our deep understanding of the dynamic regulatory and market environment, which really has a lot to do with the success of some of those innovative practices,” Daniel said.

Crowell & Moring has worked with a wide range of health care providers and systems and health insurers, among others. The firm represented Maine Community Health Options in litigation in which the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2020 that the federal government is obligated to pay more than $13 billion to health insurers that sold consumer policies on public exchanges under the Affordable Care Act.

James Flood, a former federal prosecutor and counsel to Senator Chuck Schumer who now serves as the chair of Crowell’s government affairs group, is also joining Crowell Health Solutions as a founding member.

Leveraging Expertise

Crowell Health Services will focus on four core areas: strategic counseling, policy and engagement, coalition building, and compliance counseling.

It will also work with the firm’s health care group, government affairs practice, and its global public policy and regulatory affiliate to help clients that bring innovation to health care in a very heavily regulatory environment, Daniel said.

At the HHS, Daniel helped lead changes in health care privacy and health information technology, the firm said. She was also one of the drafters of the original HIPAA privacy and enforcement rules and helped develop the model privacy notice for personal health records.

In his role at CMS, Barsky was responsible for the Stark Law policy, which regulates physician referrals, and helped implement sections of the Affordable Care Act.

“Our goal here was really to work with our clients proactively and to partner with them as they develop those innovations, as they think strategically about how to incorporate innovation into practice and how to think about what to do where law and policy might be evolving or might be gray and how to make business decisions in the wake of that uncertainty,” she said.

Walker said the consultancy expects to work with a range of clients from startup companies to large health plans and providers. It will also be focus on health care equity, an area that’s come to the forefront during the pandemic.

The pandemic has both created opportunities for innovation, but also has raised a lot of questions on how to operate in the regulatory environment created by the public health emergency, Daniel said. She added that coalition building is key as health care organizations can come together to promote changes based on what they’ve seen over the last couple of years.

Crowell Health Solutions is currently in active discussions to grow the consultancy, Walker said.

“We’ve had this vision for quite some time and are thrilled that its finally come to fruition this week,” Walker said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Meghan Tribe in New York at mtribe@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com

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