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Remembering Deborah Senn

28 Feb 2022 3:35 PM | Marybeth Berney (Administrator)

Remembering Deborah Senn:

Washington’s massage therapy community lost a great friend and supporter with the passing of former Washington State Insurance Commissioner Deborah Senn. A true champion of integrative and consumer-focused health care, Commissioner Senn introduced the "every category of provider" provision to Washington State Insurance Law in the 1990s which granted significant recognition and protection to massage therapists in this state. This provision not only paved the way for inclusion of massage therapists within private and state-run insurance plans, but it also provided the framework used by the federal government in the drafting of the "every category of provider" clause within the Affordable Care Act in 2010.

As a consummate consumer advocate, she transformed the Office of the Insurance Commissioner from insurance company-friendly to a consumer-centric one when she won her first term in 1992, becoming the first woman to serve in that statewide elected position.

She died at Swedish Medical Center on February 18 from complications related to pancreatic cancer. Senn is survived by her husband, Rudi Bertschi, as well as a brother and a sister.





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