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Saturday, January 20, 2018
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Panelist Bio


Michael R Bertaut
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana

Michael Bertaut is a Certified Health Consultant and Professional of the Academy of Healthcare Management. He has 25 years of Analytical Experience in the Healthcare, Telecom, and Retail Industry Sectors. On the ground in DC when PPACA was written, Michael has engaged in over 800 public discussions on Healthcare Costs and the Impact of Reform with stakeholder groups ranging from healthcare policy makers in Washington DC to your local public service clubs.

He is a Fellow of the Academy of Applied Politics at LSU, and author of the White Paper “Five Questions Every Business Must Answer Accurately, Monthly, Forever” which discusses in easy to understand language the steps a business must take to be compliant with the Affordable Care Act.

Michael is recognized as a national commentator on Healthcare Reform, quoted in the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, and local publications as well.

He is a financial modeler and forecaster, currently responsible for predicting membership activity for the 1.6 million Louisianans who carry a Blue Cross Card. Michael also is responsible for the weekly “Straight Talk on Healthcare Costs” blog at http://www.bcbsla.com.

Michael earned his MBA and BA from Louisiana State University and just celebrated his 30th year as a cancer survivor. He’s been married to the very patient Marla for 29 years and they have three children.

Michael is currently employed as Healthcare Economist and Exchange Coordinator for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana.

Current Topic


     01/18 - Early Education Matters

Should early childhood education be a priority?
It’s estimated that issues with early childhood education cost the state economy more than $1 billion per year. Business professionals and politicians agree that there is a severe lack of access to high-quality child care in the state. But with the state facing a $1 billion budget shortfall, can funds be found to make this a priority?

Louisiana School Finder, a first-of-its-kind performance guide on early care and education centers is a useful tool for parents seeking care for their children. Can it also be a mechanism to improve performance? Louisiana Public Square looks for answers to these questions and more on “Early Education Matters” January 24th at 7 p.m. on LPB and in New Orleans on WLAE.

Our panelists are:

· Melanie Bronfin, La. Policy Institute for Children

· Rep. Stephen Carter, R-Baton Rouge; Education Committee

· Stephen Waguespack, La. Assoc. of Business & Industry

· Supt. John White, La. Dept. of Education

Barry Erwin, CEO of the Council for a Better Louisiana (CABL) moderates the discussion.

The program includes interviews with Belinda Creel Davis, Ph.D., with the LSU Reilly Center for Media and Public Affairs and co-author of the Losing Ground study of childcare issues and workforce productivity in Louisiana; Melinda George, Child Care Assistance Manager with the La. Dept. of Education; Brigitte Nieland, V.P. for Workforce and Education for the La. Assoc. of Business & Industry: and Shawanda Jefferson, a mother whose improved employment status has put her Child Care Assistance Program benefits in jeopardy.
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Special Presentation


     05/16 - Louisiana Veterans Coming Home

What challenges do our returning veterans face?

Coming Soon!


     02/18 - Drawing the Line: Sexual Harassment in Louisiana

How widespread is the problem in our state?

Recent Topics


     12/17 - Healthy New Year! (Encore)

What is the best approach to shedding pounds in a state where cuisine is part of its culture?

     10/17 - HIV/AIDS in Louisiana

How many people are living with HIV/AIDS in Louisiana and what resources are available to them?

     09/17 - Louisiana Veterans Coming Home

What challenges face our returning veterans?

     08/17 - Studying TOPS

Is TOPS a worthwhile incentive or a middle-class tax break?
»»» View all Topics!
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