Nossaman Expands Healthcare Group in Sacramento with Addition of John Puente, Former Deputy Director and Chief Counsel at California Department of Health Care Services, and Noted Healthcare Attorney Heather Claus

Nossaman News Release

Sacramento, CA – We have expanded our Healthcare Group in Sacramento with the addition of prominent attorneys John Puente and Heather Claus. John comes from the California Department of Health Care Services and Heather from Seyfarth Shaw. Both join as partners. 

John rejoins Nossaman, where he was a partner from 2019-2020. His practice focuses on counseling healthcare entities on corporate structuring and operations, regulatory compliance and Medicare, Medicaid and Marketplace issues. He rejoins from the California Department of Health Care Services, where as Deputy Director and Chief Counsel he provided strategic legal counsel and advice to the organization and oversaw the Office of Legal Services and Office of Regulations. Earlier in his career, he was the Vice President, Government Affairs and California Operations Director for Oscar Health, where he established and led Oscar’s regulatory affairs and government relations programs and was the head of the company’s California health plan operations. Prior to Oscar Health, John was Vice President, Regulatory Affairs and Deputy General Counsel for Molina Healthcare—a publicly traded, managed care company headquartered in Long Beach, California. He has also served as the California Deputy Director, Plan and Provider Relations for the Department of Managed Healthcare (DMHC). He earned his J.D. from Gonzaga University School of Law and his B.S. from St. Mary’s College of California.

Heather’s practice focuses on working with a diverse array of healthcare entities on regulatory and transactional work including entity formation, compliance, licensing, auditing, policies and procedures, data privacy and mergers and acquisitions. She is well-versed in issues pertaining to HIPAA, Medicaid, Medicare, Marketplace, False Claims, Knox-Keene, Corporate Practice of Medicine, Stark, Anti-Kickback, Public Records and the Brown Act. Prior to joining Nossaman, Heather was Senior Counsel at a national firm, a partner at a local Sacramento firm and a contracts manager at a County Organized Health System. Heather holds a J.D. from the University of San Diego School of Law and a B.A. from the University of California, Los Angeles. She has been recognized by Best Lawyers as a Northern California Rising Star (2019 – 2022) and Sacramento Magazine as a Top Healthcare Attorney.

“We are excited John and Heather are joining the Firm,” said Melissa Borrelli, co-chair of Nossaman’s Healthcare Group. “John’s extensive healthcare experience in both the government and private practice and Heather’s impressive background in healthcare law make them both fantastic additions to our practice”

Practice co-chair Raja Sékaran said, “John and Heather add tremendous depth to our practice and will provide clients with a multifaceted skillset that can be put to work on a wide range of healthcare matters. We are pleased they are coming on board.”

Nossaman's Healthcare Group concentrates its efforts in the transactional, regulatory, operational, legislative and litigation arenas and has been perennially ranked by Chambers & Partners as one of the leading healthcare groups in the U.S. The Firm’s preeminence in healthcare law began with the landmark efforts of the Firm's senior healthcare lawyers, including former partner and former California State Assemblyman John T. Knox, co-author of the Knox-Keene Health Care Service Plan Act of 1975 and the Moscone-Knox Professional Corporation Act.

"Nossaman’s stellar reputation in healthcare, its commitment to California and its national platform make it a great fit for me,” said John. “I look forward to working with attorneys across the firm to provide best-in-class counseling to my clients on their healthcare issues.”

Heather noted, “Nossaman’s solid and long-term track record advising leading healthcare clients, particularly in the managed care space, is impressive. I am excited to collaborate with colleagues throughout the firm’s offices to add value for my clients and to help grow the practice.”

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