State and Federal Regulatory Compliance
HIPAA and Other State, Federal, and International Privacy Laws
Litigation - Civil and Administrative
PROFESSIONAL CERTIFICATIONS AND AFFILIATIONS
CHC, Certified in Healthcare Compliance
CHP, Certified HIPAA Professional
Milton L. Schwartz/David F. Levi American Inn of Court
California Lawyers Association, Litigation Section
University of Washington Law School, Seattle, WA
Juris Doctorate, 1990
Member Phi Delta Phi, International Legal Honor Society
Judson Falknor Appellate Advocacy Competition Finalist
Whitworth University, Spokane, WA
Bachelor of Arts, History/Political Science, With Honors, 1984
Member Phi Alpha Theta, History Honor Society
Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities, 1984
Sheila has over 30 years of experience in the health care industry, providing legal advice and consulting services to health care organizations, including health plans and government entities. Prior to attending law school, she was a Price Waterhouse consultant and co-authored her client’s winning bid for the 1986 CHAMPUS Reform Initiative (TRICARE), the managed health care system for members and retirees of the United States military. Sheila has advised clients on health care compliance in preparation for government audits and surveys, and assisted with Medicaid and TRICARE Procurements in multiple geographic regions.
Utilizing her knowledge and direct experience with health plan operations, Sheila was very effective in her role as Senior Counsel for the California Department of Managed Health Care’s Enforcement Division. She represented the Department in the most complex and sensitive matters, including lengthy litigation related to inaccurate provider directories; and authoring an amicus brief for the California Supreme Court on a question of health plan delegation to independent practice associations. With her consulting and project management background, she developed an interdepartmental work-group that met with the largest California health plans to analyze, reconcile, and address complex federal and state laws related to the requirements for termination of health coverage due to non-payment.
Prior to joining Kennaday Leavitt Owensby, Sheila was the Chief Counsel for the California Office of Health Information Integrity, within the California Health and Human Services Agency. She advised state agencies on HIPAA compliance, including business associate agreements, regulatory requirements, and the impact of emerging privacy laws. In this role, she helped a state agency navigate the requirements of breach notification and a subsequent investigation by the Office of Civil Rights concerning a breach which potentially impacted over a half-million individuals.
Sheila has extensive litigation experience, including mediations, arbitrations, jury trials, and appellate cases. Her experience litigating complex commercial contracts, financial disputes, and insurance coverage issues, provides a unique ability to anticipate areas of risk when she is advising clients on business opportunities and operational decisions. She is trained in dispute resolution and is a member of the Sacramento County Arbitration Panel.