Utah is known as a low-cost, healthy state, but the factors that help us maintain our position as one of the healthiest states in the country are changing. For example, the percent of the population age 65 and older in Utah is expected to double over the next 50 years. An aging population that is prone to a higher prevalence of chronic conditions will place upward pressure on individual, system, state, and federal-level health care spending and resources.
About Laura Summers
Laura Summers serves as the senior health care analyst at the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute, conducting research on health care data, policies, and impacts to the Utah health care sector.
Summers has expertise in health care, economics, and public policy. Her professional experience includes research for the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. In health care, Summers’ research focus is state-level health reform, with a particular focus in Medicaid, public health, and health insurance markets.
Prior to joining the Institute, Summers was the senior director of state intelligence at Leavitt Partners, where she prepared detailed studies of state-by-state comparative data and analyzed national and state health care programs, policies, and trends. In addition to providing research and consulting services to payers, providers, and other health care companies, Summers led health care reform initiatives in states such as Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Mississippi, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, and Washington State. Summers also oversaw the Leavitt Partners teams in designing, managing, and facilitating stakeholder engagement processes for state government projects.
Summers previously served as the research director of the Utah Foundation – a nonprofit research firm that publishes reports on issues affecting government policies. Summers received her master of public policy with an emphasis in public economics from Brigham Young University and her bachelor’s degree in economics from Westminster College.
Senior Healthcare Analyst,
Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute