Our Mission

More than one hundred Massachusetts-based organizations have come together to form the Massachusetts Coalition for Serious Illness Care. Working at these groups are dedicated physicians, nurses, hospice workers, counselors, clergy, hospital and health plan administrators, social workers, attorneys, policymakers, researchers, and other health professionals. Ultimately, people need to be at the center of discussions with family and others concerning all aspects of their care; Coalition efforts are designed to support these important conversations.

Our mission is to ensure that health care for everyone in Massachusetts is in accordance with their goals, values and preferences at all stages of life and in all steps of their care.

Coalition Goals

We have established six core priorities to help achieve our mission:
1 Complete a health care proxy
Everyone in Massachusetts, 18 or older, has designated a health care decision-maker (known as a health care "agent").
2 Engage in ongoing conversations with your health care agent
Everyone in Massachusetts, 18 or older, has had a conversation (and continues to have conversations) with their agent to communicate their goals, values and preferences for care at the end of life.
3 Ensure appropriate training for clinicians
All Massachusetts clinicians have appropriate training to facilitate high-quality communication with patients on advance care planning and serious illness.
4 Have an informed conversation with your care team
Everyone in Massachusetts facing a serious illness has had a high-quality, informed goals and values conversation with their care team.
5 Create a system to elicit and document wishes
All Massachusetts health care providers have systems in place to elicit and document goals, values, and preferences for patients with serious illness.
6 Ensure that preferences can be shared, regardless of place of care
All Massachusetts health care providers have systems in place to share patient goals, values and preferences across care settings, to ensure they are accessible regardless of place of care.

Our Leadership

Maureen Bisognano
Maureen Bisognano
Co-chair of the Coalition & President Emerita and Senior Fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement

Maureen Bisognano is President Emerita and Senior Fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), an independent not-for-profit organization helping to lead the improvement of health care throughout the world. Previously, Maureen served as IHI's Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, leading IHI along with former President and CEO Dr. Donald Berwick for 15 years. She is a prominent authority on improving health care systems, whose expertise has been recognized by her elected membership to the National Academy of Medicine, among other distinctions.

Ms. Bisognano advises health care leaders around the world, is a frequent speaker at major health care conferences on quality improvement, and is a tireless advocate for change. She is also an Instructor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, a Research Associate in the Division of Social Medicine and Health Inequalities at the Brigham and Women's Hospital, and serves on the Boards of the Commonwealth Fund, the ThedaCare Center for Healthcare Value and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center..

Prior to joining IHI, Ms. Bisognano was Senior Vice President of the Juran Institute, where she consulted with senior management on the implementation of total quality management in health care settings. Before that, she served as Chief Executive Officer of the Massachusetts Respiratory Hospital in Braintree, MA, where she implemented a hospital-wide strategic plan that improved the quality of care while simultaneously reducing costs.

Ms. Bisognano began her career in health care in 1973 as a staff nurse at Quincy Hospital in Quincy, MA. She was Director of Nursing at Quincy Hospital from 1981-1982, Director of Patient Services from 1982-1986 and Chief Operating Officer from 1986-1987. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of the State of New York and a Master of Science degree from Boston University.

Dr. Atul Gawande, MD, MPH
Dr. Atul Gawande, MD, MPH
Surgeon, Brigham and Women's Hospital; Professor, Harvard T.H., Chan School of Public Health; Chair, Haven; Founder and Chair, Ariadne Labs

Atul Gawande, MD, MPH, is a surgeon, writer, and public health leader. He practices general and endocrine surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He is a professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the Samuel O. Thier Professor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School. In addition, he is the founding executive director and chairman of Ariadne Labs, a joint center for health systems innovation, and chairman of Lifebox, a nonprofit organization making surgery safer globally, and chair of Haven, the non-profit-seeking health care venture formed by Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase. He has been a staff writer for The New Yorker magazine since 1998 and is the author of four bestselling books, most recently Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End.

Andrew Dreyfus
Andrew Dreyfus
Founding Member of the Coalition & President and CEO for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts

Andrew Dreyfus is President and Chief Executive Officer for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (BCBSMA), one of largest independent Blue Cross Blue Shield plans in the country with over $8 billion in revenue and nearly 3 million members. During his tenure, BCBSMA has consistently been recognized as one of the nation’s best health plans for member satisfaction and quality. The company has also received many awards for community involvement and leadership in promoting diverse, healthy and environmentally-friendly work places. Mr. Dreyfus assumed the role of CEO in September 2010.

Mr. Dreyfus joined BCBSMA in 2005 as Executive Vice President, Health Care Services. During his tenure, BCBSMA created the Alternative Quality Contract, one of the largest commercial payment reform initiatives in the nation.

Previously Mr. Dreyfus served as founding President of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, where he developed the “Roadmap to Coverage,” a multi-year initiative which led to the passage of the state’s landmark 2006 Health Reform Law.

Prior to his appointment at Blue Cross, Mr. Dreyfus was Executive Vice President of the Massachusetts Hospital Association (MHA), and held a number of senior health and regulatory positions in Massachusetts state government.

Mr. Dreyfus sits on the boards of Ironwood Pharmaceuticals, Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston, Jobs for Massachusetts, RIZE Massachusetts, and the New England Chapter of the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD). He is a member of the Massachusetts Digital Health Council and the advisory boards of Ariadne Labs and the Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics at the University of Southern California (USC). Andrew is a founding member of the Massachusetts Coalition for Serious Illness Care and a member of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Roundtable on Quality Care for People with Serious Illness.

Mr. Dreyfus graduated from Connecticut College with a B.A. in English.

Ellen Goodman
Ellen Goodman
Founding Member of the Coalition & Co-Founder and Director of The Conversation Project

Ellen Goodman is the Co-founder and Director of The Conversation Project. She has spent most of her life chronicling social change and its impact on American life. She was one of the first women to write for the op-ed pages where she became, according to Media Watch, the most widely syndicated progressive columnist in the country. In 1980, she won the Pulitzer Prize for Distinguished Commentary. Ms. Goodman founded The Conversation Project in 2012, which is dedicated to helping people talk about their wishes for end-of-life care. The Conversation Project has the audacious goal of changing our nation’s culture so that everyone’s wishes for end-of-life care are both expressed and respected.

Anna Gosline
Anna Gosline
Coalition Executive Director

Anna Gosline is the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Coalition for Serious Illness Care and the Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives in the Executive Office of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, which is the administrative home and primary funder of the Coalition. In her work at Blue Cross, Anna manages a diverse portfolio of policy, community and communications projects that touch on topics ranging from payment reform and health care costs to the opioid epidemic. She also leads the development of corporate-wide initiatives focused on serious illness and palliative care – from payment and benefits, to provider partnerships and measurement, to community and policy work.

Previously, Anna was the Director of Policy and Research at the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation where she oversaw the Foundation’s $1 million+ policy and research program. Before joining the Foundation, she managed a large-scale health system study for the state of Vermont. In a previous life, Anna was a health care journalist in the UK and Canada. Anna holds a master’s degree in health policy and management from the Harvard School of Public Health, a graduate certificate in science writing from the University of California, Santa Cruz and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Toronto.

Stephanie Chan
Stephanie Chan
Coalition Associate Director

Stephanie Chan is the Associate Director of the Massachusetts Coalition for Serious Illness Care and a Senior Program Manager in the Executive Office of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, which is the administrative home and primary funder of the Coalition. Stephanie is assisting with the Coalition’s research agenda, communications strategy, and academic partnerships.

Stephanie previously served as Senior Analytics Manager for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts. She brings a love of data and an analytical mindset to the Coalition's work, including experience in epidemiology. Before joining Blue Cross, Stephanie was a Presidential Management Fellow and analyst in various offices of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, specializing in visualizing data to drive health care system policy and administration. She holds a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Washington and a bachelor's degree from Wellesley College.