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The Future of Health Care — Insurance, Access to Care, Prescription Benefits — to be Discussed by UA Health-Care Policy Expert, Oct. 3

Daniel Derksen, MD

Daniel Derksen, MD

The critical state of the U.S. health-care system and the potential impact of the mid-term elections will be the topic of a lecture by University of Arizona health-care policy expert Daniel Derksen, MD, on Wednesday, Oct. 3, from 6 to 7:15 p.m., at Banner – University of Arizona Medical Center – Tucson, DuVal Auditorium, 1501 N. Campbell Ave.

Presented by the UA Arthritis Center in partnership with the UA Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, the event is free and open to the public and will include time for questions and answers.

Seating for the lecture is limited and prior registration is requested. For more information or to register, please visit the UA Arthritis Center website,, call 520-626-5040 or email 

Dr. Derksen is associate vice president for health equity, outreach and interprofessional activities at the UA Health Sciences and the Walter H. Pearce Endowed Chair and professor of public health policy and management at the UA Zuckerman College of Public Health. 

In his presentation, Dr. Derksen will express his personal opinions based on more than 30 years of experience as a family physician and in applied health policy, outcomes, education and workforce research to inform the public, providers and policymakers. He does not represent the positions of the UA or the Arizona Board of Regents.

While presidential elections are held every four years, mid-term elections are held near the mid-point of a president’s four-year term. This year on Nov. 6, federal offices up for election include all 435 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and 35 of the 100 U.S. Senate seats.

Dr. Derksen will discuss how the elections could dramatically impact all aspects of the U.S. health-care systems and health care — including Medicare, Medicaid, private health insurance, prescription benefits, access to health care, costs, payment, health outcomes and the health-care economy — at the national and state levels. 

Certain groups could be disproportionately affected, including the disabled, low-income, rural and older adult populations, many of whom are enrolled in Medicare, Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). In 2018, 40 percent of Americans are enrolled in Medicaid, Medicare and CHIP (130 million of the 328 million total U.S. population) and 44 percent of Arizonans (3.1 million of the 7 million total Arizona population) are enrolled in Medicaid, CHIP or Medicare.

Among Medicare beneficiaries, the most common chronic conditions include arthritis; high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease; and diabetes. Many have two or more chronic conditions. The costs of chronic conditions have far-reaching implications for the health-care system.

About the Living Healthy With Arthritis lectures

The UA Arthritis Center offers validation of parking tickets for the Banner – UMC Tucson Visitor/Patient Parking Garage during “Living Healthy With Arthritis” lectures. Tickets can be validated by a UA Arthritis Center staff member in the hospital lobby before or after the lecture.

If you have questions concerning access, wish to request a Sign Language interpreter or disability-related accommodations, please contact Tracy Shake, 520-626-5040, email:

The lecture is part of the “Living Healthy with Arthritis” series of free monthly talks presented by the UA Arthritis Center at the UA College of Medicine – Tucson and supported through the Susan and Saul Tobin Endowment for Research and Education in Rheumatology.

About Dan Derksen, MD

Recently appointed associate vice president for health equity, outreach and interprofessional activities at the UA Health Sciences, Dr. Derksen also is the Walter H. Pearce Endowed Chair and professor of public health policy and management in the UA Zuckerman College of Public Health, with a joint appointment as professor in the UA College of Medicine – Tucson Department of Family and Community Medicine. As director of the Arizona Center for Rural Health, Dr. Derksen’s current service, research and education activities include informing legislative, regulatory and program policy to improve health equity; increasing health insurance coverage; reducing the uninsured; narrowing health disparities; developing, implementing and evaluating interprofessional serving/learning sites; and working to assure a well-trained and distributed health workforce to meet the health needs of all Arizonans. 

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