Kristen O’Brien is an accomplished healthcare executive with a deep understanding of regulatory advocacy and healthcare policy efforts.

Kristen offers a strong background and a keen eye for solutions to barriers and challenges impacting healthcare clients. With more than 10 years of experience, her work focuses on implementing new laws through the rulemaking process, as well as working with relevant agency officials to develop and improve agency guidance.

Kristen recently served as Principal of the Health Industry Policy and Regulatory Practice Group at a law and lobbying firm where she provided representation for hospital systems, physician practices, medical device companies, digital health companies and trade associations. She has extensive experience in providing analysis and counsel related to government healthcare payment programs under Medicare and Medicaid. She also has extensive knowledge of navigating the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and others.

Previously, Kristen provided legislative and regulatory legal analysis as a senior attorney for the American Medical Association. Additionally, Kristen served on the staff of former Senator Max Baucus (D-MT), focusing on health and environmental issues, as well as financial reform.


  • Georgetown University Law Center, JD
  • Cornell University, BA

Representative Experience

  • Advised on several healthcare laws, including the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the Anti-Kickback Statute (AKS), and 21st Century Cures Act.
  • Advised and developed strategies related to government health payment programs under Medicare and Medicaid.
  • Worked with various agency officials to develop regulations and new requirements focusing on Medicare coverage, coding and reimbursement.
  • Assisted with the passage and reform of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA)

Insights and In the News

McDermottPlus Check-Up: September 17, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: September 10, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: September 3, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: August 27, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: August 20, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: August 6, 2021

CMS Releases FY 2022 IPPS Final Rule

McDermottPlus Check-Up: July 30, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: July 23, 2021

CMS Releases CY 2022 Outpatient Prospective Payment System and Ambulatory Surgical Center Payment ...

McDermottPlus Check-Up: July 16, 2021

Health Policy Breakroom - Ep 75 No Surprises Billing Act 1 day ago1 day ...

Requirements Related to Surprise Billing; Part I: Policy Update

McDermottPlus Check-Up: July 1, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: June 25, 2021

Leveraging Real World Data and Real World Evidence: How the FDA and ...

President’s Fiscal Year 2022 Budget: What You Need to Know

McDermottPlus Check-Up: June 4, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: May 28, 2021

Buoyed by Federal Covid Aid, Big Hospital Chains Buy Up Competitors

McDermottPlus Check-Up: May 21, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: May 14, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: May 7, 2021

Health Policy Breakroom Ep. 67 - FY 2022 IPPS Proposed Rule

McDermottPlus Check-Up: April 30, 2021

CMS Releases FY 2022 IPPS Proposed Update

McDermottPlus Check-Up: April 23, 2021

TPNIES – Leveraging Lessons Learned From NTAP

McDermottPlus Check-Up: April 16, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: April 9, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: April 2, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: March 26, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: March 19, 2021

American Rescue Plan Act of 2021: Key Healthcare Provisions

McDermottPlus Check-Up: March 5, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: February 26, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: February 12, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: January 29, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: January 22, 2021

The First 100 Days: Biden's Healthcare Outlook

McDermottPlus Check-Up: January 15, 2021

McDermottPlus Check-Up: January 8, 2021

Summary of Key Health Provisions in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021

The Vaccine – Understanding What’s Next

McDermottPlus Check-Up: December 18, 2020

McDermottPlus Check-Up: December 11, 2020

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Kristen O’Brien

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