In Case You Missed It: The Best Highlights of SOE 2016

By Ambar J. Calvillo-Rivera

Earlier this month, over 700 people came together at the national State of Enrollment conference (SOE) for three days of training, networking, learning, and planning in Washington, D.C.. Policy experts, enrollment assisters, health coverage and community leaders shared enrollment best practices and lessons learned from the third open enrollment period (OE3) in order to plan for the future of enrollment. A lot happened during the action-packed conference, and there were many takeaways — here are some of the highlights of SOE 2016!


Day one brought on an exciting SOE 2016 kickoff

On Wednesday, May 11, attendees arrived to a rainy D.C., ready for the Conference Kickoff roundtable sessions.

Day two launched with a keynote from Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell

We were excited to start the day with news that our President, Anne Filipic, would be joining the conference from afar as she and her husband had just welcomed their baby boy into the world.

Enroll America’s Managing Director, John Gilbert, joined Secretary Burwell for a conversation during the morning plenary, and she shared her insights on the future of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

After the morning plenary, Secretary Burwell gave a shoutout to all of the work partners are doing and the critical role they will continue to play, and we continued the discussion with prominent leaders in the health care industry.


From left to right: Enroll America’s Managing Director, John Gilbert; Senior Vice President for Consumer and Senior Markets of Blue Shield of California, Ken Wood; Former CMS Deputy Administrator and Director of the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services, Cindy Mann; and Senior Vice President for Public Affairs of Tenet Healthcare, Daniel Waldmann.

Throughout the conference, attendees jumped into a wide range of breakout sessions, gaining new information, resources, and access to key tactics and skills that are ready to be used in communities across the country.

The energy continued into the lunch plenary, The Impact of Outreach and Enrollment: What Getting Covered Means for Communities, with Congressman Joaquin Castro’s keynote, followed by a stellar panel with the President of The Children’s Partnership, Mayra Alvarez, moderating.

The audience was energized with this exercise before the plenary that demonstrated the impact of the enrollment community’s work.

On day three, everyone was moved by Magdalena Miranda’s remarks

Traveling outside of Texas for the first time in her life, Magdalena shared her own experience gaining coverage — the sense of security that she gained and the way this work inspired her to go back to school to help her community. She received a standing ovation, and left few dry eyes in the room.


Magdalena Miranda during her remarks and Mike Perry, Co-Founder of PerryUndem Research & Communications

The energy continued with an information-packed plenary, Up Close and Personal: Factors Influencing Consumers’ Health Coverage Decisions. The panel explored how individuals make health coverage decisions, the trade-offs considered, the barriers encountered, and the future of online and in-person help for consumers in 2017 and beyond.

Closing out the plenary, White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough shared the Administration’s vision for the ongoing implementation and impact of the ACA, and discussed how attendees can ensure every American has access to quality, affordable health coverage.

Throughout the conference, states were excited to come together

State pride was strong and we were excited to see all of the incredible leaders ready to take lessons learned back to their communities.

Everyone felt the #SOE2016 energy and gratitude filled the room

Thank you to everyone who joined and for making this conference the best one yet! If you couldn’t make it or you want to revisit some of your favorite sessions, you can find the presentation slides for nearly all of the sessions here.

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