Philadelphia, Pa. — Karen Dale, executive director of AmeriHealth District of Columbia, a Medicaid managed care organization serving members in the District of Columbia, will emphasize the importance of expanding primary care to women’s health in the Medicaid community and offer solutions for doing so during a presentation at the 2013 National Urban League Conference at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia. AmeriHealth District of Columbia is a member of the AmeriHealth Caritas Family of Companies, a majority-owned subsidiary of Independence Blue Cross; Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan holds a minority interest.

Dale’s presentation, part of a workshop titled “Save Our Sisters: Expanding Preventive Care for Empowered Lives,” will take place 10:30 a.m., July 26. The workshop will feature Dale and a panel of other health care experts who will convey ideas for making women’s health care more accessible and building additional community-based resources to help patients obtain needed primary care services.

A seasoned executive with 25 years of experience in health care operations, program development and financial management, Dale became the executive director for AmeriHealth District of Columbia on May 1. She previously served as the executive vice president of strategic health solutions for D.C. Chartered Health Plan, which was acquired by AmeriHealth Caritas. AmeriHealth District of Columbia is the largest Medicaid managed care plan in the District, serving almost 100,000 members.

“Building a healthier America requires shifting the health care paradigm from a focus on treating problems when they occur to preventing those problems in the first place. The Affordable Care Act’s making many preventive care services free is only the first step to accomplishing this,” says Dale. “Health plans need to encourage more primary care physicians and women’s health specialists to practice in underserved communities, build strong relationships with community organizations and offer educational programs that help people understand why preventive care is important and how they can access it.”