Priority Health announces new chief medical officer

(GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — May 6, 2024) After a nationwide search, Priority Health, a nationally recognized nonprofit health plan serving more than 1.3 million members, has named Elif Oker, MD, as senior vice president and chief medical officer. She will join Priority Health on May 20, 2024.

Dr. Oker will lead Priority Health’s clinical and pharmacy programs, the development and coordination of population health programs and chronic disease management strategies. She will also drive strategic planning to further Priority Health’s mission of improving health, enhancing the patient experience and enabling access to affordable, high-quality health care.

During the past 25 years, Dr. Oker has served in a variety of executive leadership roles including positions at Elevance Health and Health Care Service Corporation/ Blue Cross Blue Shield.

“Elif is an accomplished health care executive and board-certified physician who has led health care transformations through innovative alignment of talent, ideas, digital and emerging capabilities and clinical expertise,” said Praveen Thadani, president of Priority Health. “Her leadership capabilities and strong payer and clinical experience will contribute in a very meaningful way to our mission, vision and values. We are honored to have her join our team.”

Dr. Oker received a bachelor’s degree in biomedical sciences and a medical degree from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. She was named among Chicago’s Notable Women in Healthcare by Crain’s Chicago Business.

“The chance to make a positive impact on health and well-being by working in an integrated, payer-provider organization in this capacity is incredibly significant,” said Oker. “Through collaboration and the smart use of technology, we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create a care ecosystem that provides access to high-quality, affordable care to everyone, no matter where they live. I believe Corewell Health and Priority Health are uniquely positioned to lead the design of this future. I am eager to work with my colleagues and the community to deliver modern, high-impact services that we can all take pride in.”

About Priority Health:

With over 30 years in business, Priority Health is the second largest health plan in Michigan, offering an extensive portfolio of health benefits options for employer groups and individuals, including Medicare and Medicaid plans. Serving more than 1.3 million members each year and offering a broad network of primary care physicians in Michigan, Priority Health continues to be recognized as a leader for quality, customer service, transparency and product innovation. Learn more about affordable, quality health coverage options from Priority Health