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My summer at the Center for Medicare Advocacy gave me great insight into the policy side of healthcare law. Last summer, I worked directly with low-income clients to secure public benefits, including health coverage through Medicare and Medicaid. Having understood the importance of policy on an individual level, my internship at the Center let me focus on policy on a much larger level.

My work was varied, and very interesting. I researched and compared state health coverage for low-income beneficiaries eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid to highlight gaps in coverage for this often-neglected group. I spent lots of time researching medical coding and billing, and became an expert on the problem of observation in hospitals. This project was especially exciting because the Center's work was publicized in an article over the summer (Medicare Fraud Effort Gives Elderly Surprise Hospital Bills). I co-authored an article on changes to Medicare coverage of power mobility devices, such as motorized scooters, with one of the attorneys and the other Health Policy Intern. I also had the opportunity to attend plenty of meetings and briefings, which helped me understand the myriad of problems, large and small, with Medicare and Health Reform implementation. I learned a lot, and when I didn’t understand something from the briefings, I asked the attorneys at the Center.

My internship also showed me how a fairly small and spread-out organization organizes itself to advocate tirelessly on several fronts. Also interesting was how the Center works with so many other advocacy groups to present (mostly) unified policy goals to government agencies and staffers. I had a wonderful experience at the Center this summer, and learned an incredible amount about health policy and advocacy.

Gilly Knox
Health Policy Intern
Summer 2010

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