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    Leena Hiilivirta J.D.

Prinicipal & Office Business Leader

As Office Business Leader of the Washington, D.C. office and a Principal, Leena Hiilivirta has over 15 years of health policy experience working with a number of states in developing, implementing and evaluating Medicaid and non-Medicaid programs for acute, behavioral health and long-term care (LTC) services. Her expertise includes resolving program design issues, researching and drafting issue papers, writing requests for proposals (RFPs) and contracts, drafting waiver requests and conducting readiness reviews and other monitoring and evaluation activities.


Prior to joining Mercer, Leena was a consultant at Alicia Smith & Associates, LLC (ASA), which was acquired by Mercer in January 2012. Prior to working for ASA, Leena was a consultant at a health care consulting firm that specialized in Medicaid.  Leena’s recent accomplishments include:

  • Leading key projects to assist the State of Florida with the implementation of statewide Medicaid managed care, including writing a 1915(c) waiver to replace five existing 1915(c) waivers, drafting the contract for managed LTC and medical assistance, and developing the evaluation questions for the managed LTC and medical assistance invitations to negotiate.
  • Assisting the State of Ohio with the development of a Section 1115 waiver application to streamline and simplify Medicaid eligibility.
  • Assisting the Tennessee Benefits Administration with various procurements for state and local employees, including a vendor to provide work-life and behavioral health services, a vendor to provide health management and wellness services and a third party administrator to manage physical health services. This work included drafting the contract and RFP questions.
  • Assisting the District of Columbia (DC) with legal and policy analysis regarding development of a health insurance exchange, including analysis of federal market reform and DC Code provisions.
  • Advising Tennessee on the implementation of the Long Term Care Community Choices Act of 2008. This included researching best practices regarding consumer protections (e.g., background checks and fatality reviews) and drafting consumer protection legislation. It also included amending the existing MCO contract to incorporate LTC services.
  • Supporting the Florida Commission for the Transportation Disadvantaged (CTD) in developing policies and procedures to meet the requirements of CTD’s contract with the Agency for Health Care Administration to provide non-emergency transportation services to Medicaid beneficiaries.
  • Assisting New Mexico with the procurement of a behavioral health organization to manage the delivery of Medicaid and non-Medicaid behavioral health services. Significantly revised the existing contract, drafted the RFP, including the questions for bidders, and drafted responses to bidders’ questions.
  • Assisting Tennessee in the procurement of MCOs to serve TennCare enrollees in the three regions of the State. Responsibilities included drafting the contracts and RFPs and preparing responses to bidders’ questions. Also assisted in readiness review of the MCOs, which included developing a desk audit tool and reviewing specified policies and procedures.
  • Assisting Tennessee in the design and development of CoverTN, a plan to provide basic health care coverage for low-income, working uninsured individuals and small businesses that meet certain eligibility requirements. Helped with program design decisions, drafting the RFP and contract, responding to bidders’ questions, and developing an evaluation guide.


Juris Doctor degree, Cum Laude, Georgetown University Law Center

Bachelor in Psychology, with Honors, Haverford College