AAPL Members Make 2017 List of Top 100 Influential Leaders in Health Care

By AAPL Staff
August 21, 2017

Three Republican senators topped the annual judging, which honors the most influential individuals in the industry in terms of leadership and impact.

Two members of the American Association for Physician Leadership were listed among the 100 most influential people in health care in 2017 by Modern Healthcare.



Gary Kaplan, MD, FACP, FACMPE, FACPE, the chairman and chief executive officer of Virginia Mason Health System in Seattle, Washington, is No. 40 in the annual rankings, voted upon by peers and the magazine’s senior editors.

Georges Benjamin, MD, executive director of the American Public Health Association in Washington, D.C., ranks No. 66 in the list.



The magazine’s annual list, released Monday, honors the most influential individuals in the health care industry in terms of leadership and impact.

Republican senators Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and John McCain of Arizona shared the top spot after resisting party pressure and voting against a "skinny repeal" of the Affordable Care Act in July.

Modern Healthcare notes “their pivotal role in changing the direction of the debate.”

Kaplan, a practicing internal medicine physician, appears in the rankings for the ninth time. He was cited for his shaping of Virginia Mason Health System into a “pioneer of patient safety and quality” and as a “bold experimenter in the name of higher quality, better-priced care.”

Benjamin, 65, who has led APHA since 2002, is known as one of the nation’s most influential physician leaders. He chaired a National Academies of Sciences Engineering and Medicine committee that determined the U.S. academic biomedical research community is ill-prepared for disasters such as hurricanes and cyberattacks. This is Benjamim's 11th year on the list.

Here are the top 20:

  1. Susan Collins - (R-Maine) - U.S. Senate
  2. John McCain - (R-Ariz.) - U.S. Senate
  3. Lisa Murkowski - (R-Alaska) - U.S. Senate
  4. Bernard Tyson - Chairman and CEO - Kaiser Permanente
  5. Anthony Tersigni - President and CEO - Ascension
  6. Rep. Paul Ryan - House speaker - U.S. House of Representatives
  7. President Donald Trump - President - United States
  8. Mark Bertolini - Chairman and CEO - Aetna
  9. Rick Pollack - President and CEO - American Hospital Association
  10. R. Milton Johnson - Chairman and CEO - HCA Healthcare
  11. Dr. Toby Cosgrove - Outgoing president and CEO - Cleveland Clinic
  12. Mitch McConnell - Majority leader - U.S. Senate
  13. Dr. Tom Price - Secretary - HHS
  14. Joseph Swedish - Chairman, President and CEO - Anthem
  15. Seema Verma - Administrator - CMS
  16. Dr. John Noseworthy - President and CEO - Mayo Clinic
  17. Trevor Fetter - Chairman and CEO - Tenet Healthcare Corp.
  18. Marilyn Tavenner - President and CEO - America's Health Insurance Plans
  19. Eugene Woods - President and CEO - Carolinas HealthCare System
  20. Dr. James Madara - Executive VP and CEO - American Medical Association

Click here for the complete list.

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