Melinda Dutton serves as a partner within the healthcare division of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP ("Manatt"), and also plays a leadership role within Manatt Health Solutions (MHS), an interdisciplinary policy and business advisory practice within the firm. Her practice concentrates on advising clients in the healthcare industry with respect to regulatory, public policy and business matters.
Dutton has extensive experience working with public health insurance programs and the healthcare safety net, and represents a broad array of health care clients in navigating the legal, regulatory and political challenges of Medicaid, SCHIP and other public programs. She assists health centers, hospitals, home care agencies and other providers with issues related to business strategy and reimbursement, as well as licensure and regulatory compliance. Dutton also provides strategic counsel, policy analysis and research support to foundations, think tanks and advocacy organizations for children, the disabled and other vulnerable populations. She has written extensively on the laws and systems that govern public health insurance programs, particularly as they relate to eligibility, benefit delivery and reimbursement, and is currently advising foundations, state governments and provider groups on the implications of health reform.
Dutton has been engaged in a wide variety of projects involving use of health information technology to improve the quality and efficiency of health care. She has supported statewide, multi-stakeholder health information exchange planning efforts in several states. She served as an adviser to New York State on the Health Information Privacy and Security Collaboration, where she identified laws, policies and business practices that support the private and secure exchange of health information, and has assisted states in developing strategic and operational plans to support both statewide health information exchange and implementation of Medicaid incentives under HITECH.
Prior to joining Manatt, Dutton served for nine years at the Children’s Defense Fund in New York, where she helped develop and secure passage of legislation expanding publicly funded health insurance programs for children. Dutton started her legal career at South Brooklyn Legal Services, where she helped establish a health law practice serving low-income populations.