Pat Wang joined Healthfirst as president and CEO in 2008 and today leads 4,500 dedicated employees who provide health insurance to 1.5 million New Yorkers. Founded by 15 leading area hospitals, Healthfirst is one of the largest not-for-profit and highest quality health plans in the country. The company offers Medicaid, Medicare Advantage, long-term care, qualified health plans and individual and small group plans. One in 7 residents of New York City is enrolled in a Healthfirst product.
During Ms. Wang’s tenure, the company’s enrollment increased by close to 400 percent and revenues by more than 600 percent – to about $12 billion today, and achieved the highest quality rankings for its products. She is a passionate advocate of the company’s mission to achieve optimal outcomes for its members by working in close alignment with the providers who care for them, as well as with community leaders and others to address broader social determinants that affect their health. As a child of immigrants, she deeply appreciates the importance of serving Healthfirst’s diverse membership in culturally competent ways and is proud of Healthfirst employees’ belief that the company’s members are their North Star.
Before joining Healthfirst, Ms. Wang worked at the Greater New York Hospital Association where, at the beginning of her 17-year tenure, she helped conceptualize and launched Healthfirst as a new kind of health insurer focusing on value-based, quality care for members. Healthfirst was spun off as a separate corporation in 1993. Earlier in her career, Ms. Wang clerked for the Honorable Whitman Knapp, U.S. District Court Judge for the Southern District of New York and practiced health law in New York City.
Regarded as an influential voice on health care reform, she serves as a commissioner on the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC), which advises the U.S. Congress on Medicare payment policy, and was appointed by Governor Cuomo in 2020 to the Medicaid Redesign Team II. Ms. Wang also serves on the boards of directors of America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) and the New York Health Plan Association. A strong advocate for the local community, she is a trustee of the Citizens Budget Commission, a non-partisan, non-profit civic organization focused on the well-being of future New Yorkers.
Ms. Wang is a graduate of Princeton University and of New York University School of Law, where she received her J.D. degree, cum laude. She has lived in Yugoslavia, Taiwan, and China and is a longtime resident of New York City.