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For over 30 years, America has looked to Susan Dentzer for her trusted analysis on health care policy. She is one of the nation’s most respected health journalists, most recognized for her work on PBS’s The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer where she led a unit dedicated to in-depth coverage of health care and social security issues.

During her time at PBS, Dentzer’s insightful reporting garnered her multiple awards and attention for her stories on nursing home reform, understanding Alzheimers, schizophrenia, osteoporosis, and prescription drugs. In 2008 she left her regular television post to serve as Editor-in-Chief for the “Bible of Healthcare Policy” Health Affairs, a peer-reviewed journal published by the non-profit organization Project Hope, which promotes healthcare education and humanitarian assistance in 36 countries.

Currently she is the Senior Health Policy Advisor at the Robert Wood John Foundation, the nation’s largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to improving the health and health care of all Americans. She continues to provide analysis on The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer as well as National Public Radio’s “This American Life” and The Diane Rehm Show.

When she’s not on-air or in the office, Dentzer advocates for marginalized peoples around the world. As Overseer of the Health Committee of the non-profit organization, the International Rescue Committee, she has travelled to western Africa as part of a campaign to reduce domestic violence. Her duties have also taken her to Syria and Jordan where she reviewed the situation of Iraqi refugees who had fled to those countries.

Full Profile

    Susan Dentzer is the Editor-in-Chief of Health Affairs, the nation’s leading journal of health policy, and an on-air analyst on health issues with The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer on the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS).

    Dentzer assumed the job of Editor-in-Chief on May 1, 2008, after a decade as the on-air health correspondent for The NewsHour. Health Affairs, which has been called the nation’s health policy “Bible,” is a peer-reviewed journal that appears bimonthly in print with additional online entries published weekly at www.healthaffairs.org. The journal and website, based in Bethesda, MD, are published by Project HOPE, the health education and humanitarian assistance organization that operates programs in 36 countries around the world.

    At The NewsHour, Dentzer led a unit dedicated to providing in-depth coverage of health care and health policy and Social Security. The unit, begun in 1998, was funded by grants from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation and, beginning in 2005, from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

    Dentzer was the recipient of multiple awards. In 2007, she received the American Society on Aging National Media Award for a two-part series on our current understanding of the causes of Alzheimer’s disease, efforts under way to speed treatments to patients, and the enormous burden faced by caregivers of Alzheimer’s patients. The unit′s December 2005 and April 2005 pieces, “Wounded Soldier” and “Wounded Warrior,” about a paralyzed and brain damaged soldier who was severely wounded in Iraq, won the 2005 Award for Excellence in Health Care Journalism from the Association of Health Care Journalists. The same pieces also earned both a CINE Golden Eagle and New York Festival award.

    Dentzer′s October 2004 Health Unit piece, “Osteoporosis,” received a first-place Gracie Allen award for public television news from American Women in Radio and Television. Her two part investigative series on importation of prescription drugs, broadcast in March 2004, earned a second place prize for radio and television programming from the American Health Journalists Association. Coverage in 2002 of the “Eden Alternative” approach to nursing home reform garnered a 2003 Gabriel Award from the Catholic Academy for Communication Arts Professionals. And a 1999 report on schizophrenia earned the 2000 Robinson Electronic Media Award from the American Psychiatric Association.

    Prior to joining The NewsHour in 1998, Dentzer was chief economics correspondent and economics columnist for U.S. News & World Report, where she served from 1987 to 1997. In a series of columns and stories for U.S. News, she reported extensively on the debate over reforming and partially “privatizing” Social Security and over such health policy issues as regulation of managed care. Before joining U.S. News, Dentzer was at Newsweek, where she was a senior writer covering business news until 1987. Dentzer′s work in television has included appearances as a regular analyst or commentator on CNN and The McLaughlin Group.

    Dentzer′s writing has also earned her several fellowships. A Nieman Fellow at Harvard University for the 1986-87 academic year, she studied health economics and other disciplines. A U.S.-Japan Leadership Program Fellow in 1991, Dentzer conducted research on U.S.-Japan economic relations and the effects of the aging Japanese population.

    Dentzer is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and is the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Global Health Council, the world’s largest membership organization of groups involved in global health She also serves on the Board of Directors of the International Rescue Committee, the nonprofit organization that works in relief, rehabilitation, protection, post-conflict development and resettlement services for those uprooted or affected by violent conflict and oppression worldwide. At IRC, Dentzer heads the Board′s Health Committee, which oversees the organization′s health programs in 25 countries. In February 2008, she traveled to Syria and Jordan as part of an IRC delegation reviewing the situation of Iraqi refugees who have fled to these countries as a result of the ongoing war in Iraq.

    Dentzer is also a member of the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured as well as the advisory board of the California Health Benefits Review Committee and is a member of the National Advisory Committee for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation′s Investigator Awards in Health Policy Research. Dentzer is also on the board of directors of the Friends of the National Institute for Nursing Research.

    A graduate of Dartmouth, Dentzer holds an honorary Master of Arts degree from Dartmouth and an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Muskingum College, New Concord, Ohio. She is a member of the Board of Overseers of Dartmouth Medical School. Previously, she served on the Dartmouth College Board of Trustees from 1993 to June 2004 and was the first woman ever to serve as Chair of Dartmouth′s board from 2001 to 2004. She is also a former trustee of the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, having served in that capacity until 2004. In 2007 she received the Dartmouth Alumni Award, the highest honor given to Dartmouth alumni for service to the college.

    Dentzer, her husband and their three children live in the Washington D.C. area.


Susan Dentzer Speaker Videos Back to top

Keynote Speech


Susan Dentzer captures the current mood in America’s healthcare policy perfectly as she prepares to break down the major transformations occurring due to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or in her words “the crosswinds of change.” “You can imagine sort of standing in the middle of the runway out at Hartsfield [Airport] and having winds blowing in different directions at you not to mention planes flying and God knows someday drones flying all around as well. That’s kind of the chaotic environment we’re all living in.”

Lecture


Innovators in Healthcare Acceptance Speech



Speeches / Speaking Engagements Back to top


Candid but graceful, Susan Dentzer uses her insider knowledge to deliver clear and trustworthy insights on healthcare, healthcare policy, and their ties to the bigger picture of economics and politics. Pointing out both problems and solutions, she dedicates time and care to answering her audiences’ questions, humbly noting that: “I learn just as much from the people in the audience when I speak as I’m sure any of you learn from me.”

    Political Economics
    In this informative presentation, Susan Dentzer analyzes fiscal and budgetary problems facing the US, outlines current disputes, and explains whether or not they revolve around healthcare. While examining current battles between Congress and the White House, she offers both short-and long-term solutions, and explains what it all means for everyone - from consumers to associations and corporations.

    The Future of Healthcare Policy
    As an expert on healthcare policy, Susan Dentzer cuts through the rhetoric and examines the latest policy changes and explains what they mean for the future.

    Other Suggested Programs:

    • A Roadmap to Decency, Rising to Meet America’s Healthcare Challenge
    • Health Care and Health Policy
    • The Future of Medicare Reform
    • The Uninsured
    • Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid


Susan Dentzer Speaker Testimonials Back to top

    "Your insightful and thoughtful remarks and your candor responding to questions brought precisely the type of focus we hoped would transpire during the Conference morning session. The attendee evaluations of the Conference were uniform in their praise of your good work and that of fellow Panel members. Our constituents in the business community simply cannot ignore the imperative of health care reform communicated by your clear-headed thinking and the understated, yet forceful manner in which you chose to convey that message. You are a most gracious and kind person. I wish you best of luck going forward and I will keep Health Affairs on my short list of ′must read′ policy journals."
    Kelley School of Business, Indiana University

    "Ms. Dentzer′s speech went very fine and the audience was very positive. From the first feedback, everybody found the speech extremely interesting. Some people also asked us how to invite Ms. Dentzer for some of their own conference!"
    Quebec International

    "[Susan was] a great fit for PCMA! It′s rare that an organization comes across a speaker that is both skilled in moderating a program and an expert in healthcare. We received rave reviews on her performance."
    Pharmaceutical Care Management Assn.




* Please note that while this speaker’s specific speaking fee falls within the range posted above (for Continental U.S. based events), fees are subject to change. For current fee information or international event fees (which are generally 50-75% more than U.S based event fees), please contact us.

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    "Your insightful and thoughtful remarks and your candor responding to questions brought precisely the type of focus we hoped would transpire during the Conference morning session. The attendee evaluations of the Conference were uniform in their praise of your good work and that of fellow Panel members. Our constituents in the business community simply cannot ignore the imperative of health care reform communicated by your clear-headed thinking and the understated, yet forceful manner in which you chose to convey that message. You are a most gracious and kind person. I wish you best of luck going forward and I will keep Health Affairs on my short list of ′must read′ policy journals."
    Kelley School of Business, Indiana University

    "Ms. Dentzer′s speech went very fine and the audience was very positive. From the first feedback, everybody found the speech extremely interesting. Some people also asked us how to invite Ms. Dentzer for some of their own conference!"
    Quebec International

    "[Susan was] a great fit for PCMA! It′s rare that an organization comes across a speaker that is both skilled in moderating a program and an expert in healthcare. We received rave reviews on her performance."
    Pharmaceutical Care Management Assn.


    Political Economics
    In this informative presentation, Susan Dentzer analyzes fiscal and budgetary problems facing the US, outlines current disputes, and explains whether or not they revolve around healthcare. While examining current battles between Congress and the White House, she offers both short-and long-term solutions, and explains what it all means for everyone - from consumers to associations and corporations.

    The Future of Healthcare Policy
    As an expert on healthcare policy, Susan Dentzer cuts through the rhetoric and examines the latest policy changes and explains what they mean for the future.

    Other Suggested Programs:

    • A Roadmap to Decency, Rising to Meet America’s Healthcare Challenge
    • Health Care and Health Policy
    • The Future of Medicare Reform
    • The Uninsured
    • Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid


Keynote Speech


Susan Dentzer captures the current mood in America’s healthcare policy perfectly as she prepares to break down the major transformations occurring due to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or in her words “the crosswinds of change.” “You can imagine sort of standing in the middle of the runway out at Hartsfield [Airport] and having winds blowing in different directions at you not to mention planes flying and God knows someday drones flying all around as well. That’s kind of the chaotic environment we’re all living in.”

Lecture


Innovators in Healthcare Acceptance Speech