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Elena Mendez-Escobar

Associate Partner, Boston
Supporting private and public healthcare entities in designing long-term strategies and improving operations in the context of changing regulation

About Elena

Elena serves a wide range of private and public healthcare institutions to improve healthcare outcomes and increase affordability in the healthcare system. She supports payers, states, and other organizations to rethink and execute strategy and to transform operations.

Elena has deep knowledge of the payer space and special-need populations, including mental health, substance-use disorders, long-term services and support, and intellectual and developmental disabilities, particularly within the Medicaid space. Examples of her recent work include designing and implementing payment-innovation strategies, optimizing medical-management operations, supporting end-to-end organizational redesign to support new strategy, and designing interventions to address the opioid epidemic.

Elena is passionate about working with healthcare stakeholders to drive change and better outcomes for society. She coleads two areas within healthcare. McKinsey’s Center for Societal Benefit through Healthcare integrates, amplifies, and extends previous efforts in issues deeply relevant to society, such as social determinants of health, rural health, maternal health, and behavioral health. And McKinsey’s Opioids Insights, a group focused on providing insights, expertise, and analytics to help clients and society combat the opioid crisis.

Published work

Why we need bolder action to combat the opioid epidemic,” McKinsey & Company, September 2018

Ten insights on the US opioid crisis from claims data analysis,” McKinsey & Company, June 2018


University of Edinburgh
PhD, theoretical physics

MIT Sloan School of Management

University of Cambridge, Churchill College
MSc, theoretical physics

Autonomous University of Madrid
BSc, physics