As the nation’s aging population drives the demand for patient-centered and value-based health care, Clifford Barnes is advising post-acute health care providers, Medicaid, and managed care companies on meeting the need. Cliff has practiced health care law since its inception; his big-picture insights add value to clients’ innovations, from product inception to rollout. Clients rely on his guidance in acquisitions, mergers, joint ventures, and related regulatory compliance as they expand access to care and their businesses.

The transformation of hospices, home health care, palliative services, and nursing homes comes with new risks. Cliff is identifying—and mitigating—the exposure clients face, guiding them through organizational restructures and negotiating strategic partnerships and agreements with programs. Boards of directors and company leaders value his business practicality and embrace of good opportunities. Startup companies also rely on Cliff’s bootstrap-friendly, outside general counsel advice to bring their products and services to market.

Cliff’s former service as an administrator in the New York City Health Department spurred his interest in health care law and underserved communities. A co-founder of the Medicaid Health Plans of America, Inc., Cliff is focusing his industry leadership on the intersection of Medicaid and managed care with expansion of mental health care provided by members of the national trade association. Cliff shares clients’ commitment to the public and the creation of systemic solutions to health care challenges.


  • Negotiated successfully, on behalf of a home health care agency client, a settlement agreement with the D.C. Department of Health Care Finance (DHCF), ending the suspension of Medicaid payments due to the client. Cliff assisted the client in settling the matter within two months of the client’s receipt of the DHCF’s Notice of Suspension.
  • Helped an investment firm acquire two skilled nursing facilities and two long-term acute care facilities. Cliff and his team advised the investment firm on the health regulatory aspects of the transaction.
  • Represented a client providing specialized inpatient stabilization and withdrawal management services in two matters. First, Cliff obtained from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General a waiver of successor liability under the client’s Corporate Integrity Agreement (CIA) in connection with the acquisition of the client’s assets by a national provider of behavioral health services. Second, Cliff secured the suspension of the client's obligations under its CIA.
  • Served as regulatory counsel to advise a community hospital client seeking to become a region-wide proton therapy provider on the regulatory process, including the Certificate of Need (CON), for the establishment of proton therapy stations. Cliff developed the strategy, prepared regulatory filings, and interfaced with the regulators, leading the government to approve three proton stations.
  • Assisted a home health care provider in successfully entering into an agreement to settle a disputed confessed judgment liability of more than $930,000 for the sum of $428,333.28.
  • University of Virginia (J.D., 1981)
    • Editorial Board, Journal of Natural Resources Law
  • Cornell University (M.B.A., 1974)
    • Hospital Administration
  • Pace University (B.B.A., 1972)
Bar Admissions
  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland
  • New York
  • American Bar Association
  • American Health Law Association: Fellow; Vice Chair, Accountable Care Organization Task Force (former)
  • American Society of Association Executives
  • District of Columbia Bar Association
  • National Bar Association
  • Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity Epsilon Boule'
Board of Directors
  • CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Medicaid Health Plans of America, Inc.
  • National Association of Health Services Executives
  • Washington DC Super Lawyers, Health Care (2016 to 2020)
  • American Health Law Association, Fellow (2020); Accountable Care Organization Task Force, Vice Chair (2015)
  • Lawyers of Color’s “Nation’s Best,” Inaugural List, (2019)
  • The Legal 500 United States, Healthcare: Health Insurers (2016, 2018)
  • CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield, Finance and Investment Committee of Group Hospitalization and Medical Services, Inc., Chair (2016)
  • United Planning Organization, Audit Committee, Chair (2016)
  • Medicaid Health Plans of America, Isadore King Spirit of Service Award (2009)
  • St. Louis University Health Law Program, Practitioner in Residence (2005)
  • National Association of Health Services Executives, President’s Award (1985)