The Maryland Healthcare Directives website is a collaboration between the law firm of Ober|Kaler and the Office of the Attorney General of Maryland. It is and outgrowth of the long-term relationship between Howard L. Sollins, a shareholder with Ober|Kaler's Health Law Group and Jack Schwartz, who has been until recently a longstanding and highly regarded Assistant Attorney General and Director of Health Policy in the Maryland Attorney General's Office. For years, both of these professionals worked with health care providers and regulatory agencies working with health care providers, patients and their families who on advance directive and health care decision making issues.
Howard L. Sollins has been practicing law for nearly 30 years, nearly all of it in the Health Law area, both as an Assistant Attorney General with Maryland's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and in private practice. He currently leads Ober|Kaler's Long Term Care group. His areas of practice include a wide range of regulatory matters including licensing, survey and certification, fraud and abuse issues and corporate compliance, Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement, privacy issues and business transactions. He has worked on health care decision making legislation and routinely advises clients in this area. He is a past Chair of the Health Law Section of the Maryland State Bar Association and a past member of the Legal Committee within the American Association of Homes and Services to the Aging. He is listed for his work in health law in multiple, annual editions of the Best Lawyers in America, Chambers and Super Lawyers. Most recently, Howard received the Health Facilities Association of Maryland's 2007 President's Award in recognition of his work on behalf of that organization, and for the long term care provider community and has been recognized for his support for the National Conference of Gerontological Nurse Practitioners. He publishes and lectures widely on health law topics. Howard received his B.A. degree from George Washington University and his J.D. from the Washington College of Law, American University.
Jack Schwartz is the first Senior Health Law & Policy Fellow at the University of Maryland School of Law. He previously served as a Maryland Assistant Attorney General for more than 25 years, including long stints as Chief Counsel for Opinions and Advice and Director of Health Policy Development. Earlier in his career, he held a series of senior staff positions at the Federal Trade Commission in Washington. He is currently a member of an institutional review board at the National Cancer Institute, a data and safety monitoring board for the National Institute on Aging, an advisory committee on healthcare-acquired infections for the Maryland Health Care Commission, and the advisory board of the Maryland Healthcare Ethics Committee Network. In recent years, he was a member of the State Advisory Council on Quality Care at the End of Life, the Maryland Stem Cell Research Commission, and the American Bar Association's Commission on Law and Aging. He also served as a senior consultant to the National Bioethics Advisory Commission and a member of a national advisory committee for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. He earned his B.A. degree at the University of Maryland Baltimore County and his J.D. from Yale Law School.
Paul Ballard is an Assistant Attorney General and Counsel for Health Decisions Policy for the Attorney General. He is also Counsel to the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's Office of Health Care Quality, which agency licenses and regulates health care programs and facilities in the State of Maryland. Prior to performing his present duties, Mr. Ballard was counsel to various health occupation licensing boards, including the Dental, Pharmacy, Physical Therapy, Psychology, Social Work and Acupuncture Boards. Before being assigned to the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, he was an Assistant Attorney General with the Maryland Department of Transportation. In 2005 he received the Attorney Generalís Exceptional Service Award. He has been practicing law since 1987.
Mr. Ballard graduated summa cum laude from Morgan State University, where he majored in philosophy. He received a Master of Arts degree in counseling psychology from Loyola College in Maryland and earned his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Baltimore School of Law.