Deborah L. Gersh


  • JD, with honors, The George Washington University Law School
  • BA, Northwestern University, Phi Beta Kappa


  • Illinois, 1983
  • Member, National Association of Professional Women (2014)
  • Member, Advisory Board of George Washington University Law School (2014-present)
  • Board of Directors, Illinois Institute of Continuing Legal Education (2009-2015)
  • Coalition of Women in Large Law Firms, and Board Member (2008-2014)
  • American Health Lawyers Association
  • Law360 Healthcare Editorial Advisory Board (2020)
  • Adjunct Professor, Chicago-Kent College of Law, Information Technology and Emerging Companies Clinic (2000-2005)
  • The National Law Journal, Trailblazer (2019)
  • Marquis Who's Who (2019) 
  • The National Law Journal “Health Care Law Trailblazer” (2019)
  • Crain’s Chicago Business “Chicago’s Notable Women Lawyers” (2018)
  • Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business (2015-2020)
  • The Best Lawyers in America (2015-2020)
  • Super Lawyers Illinois (2005-2019)
  • Legal 500 (2014-2016, 2018)

Deborah L. Gersh


Deborah Gersh is the co-chair of Ropes & Gray’s nationally recognized health care practice and the co-leader of the firm’s Health Care and Life Sciences Industry Group. Deborah also actively participates in the data, privacy & cybersecurity group. She has over thirty years of experience advising health care industry clients and investors on mergers, acquisitions, and joint ventures, and the complex regulatory regimes implicated by such transactions. Currently, Deborah is also advising health care clients on issues related to COVID-19, such as operational preparedness and business continuity planning. 

In addition, Deborah has counseled many clients through the implementation of value-based care (“VBC”) initiatives, and is recognized as a leading voice on structuring innovative arrangements, including novel business models and structures designed to foster biotechnology companies' expansion beyond their traditional market into the provider space. She also publishes and presents extensively on VBC.

As a leading practitioner also on privacy, data security and cyber-security issues, Deborah advises clients on an array of data privacy, protection and security matters under HIPAA, state privacy and security laws, and emerging guidance arising from the coronavirus pandemic. She has represented clients involved in security incidents involving protected health and other sensitive personal information, including representing clients in matters involving the United States Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights, as well as HIPAA security audits and qui tam actions initiated by state and federal government authorities.

Recently, she was part of the firm’s team that secured a landmark victory for LabMD in its dispute with the FTC over the company’s security practices.

Deborah’s clients include pharmaceutical manufacturers and medical device companies, managed care companies, dental service organizations and practice management companies, academic medical centers and community hospitals as well as private equity and venture capital companies investing in the health care and life sciences industries.

She is a member of the Ropes & Gray Women’s Forum, which promotes professional growth among female lawyers.


  • Blackstone – Deborah acted as lead regulatory counsel in negotiation of a joint venture arrangement between Change Healthcare Holdings, a portfolio company of Blackstone, and McKesson’s technology services business.
  • Madison Dearborn Partners – Deborah represented MDP as lead regulatory counsel in its joint venture with Walgreens Infusion Services in which MDP acquired a majority interest in its infusion therapy business.
  • Cressey & Co. – Represented Cressey & Co. in its sale of Strategic Healthcare Programs to Roper Industries.
  • Bain Capital LP – Deborah acted as lead health care counsel in connection with its acquisition of Navicure, a leading provider of cloud-based claims management and patient payment solutions for physician practices and hospitals.
  • Data Company – Deborah was lead regulatory counsel in connection with the $1 billion acquisition by a private equity company of a health care clearinghouse and data aggregation company.
  • Heartland Dental, LLC – Deborah represented Heartland, the largest dental support organization, in the sale of Heartland’s controlling interest from Teachers’ Private Capital, the investment division of Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, to KKR in March, 2018. Revenues for the supported practice exceeded $1.3 billion in 2017. 
  • HIPAA – Deborah represented a managed care plan, in connection with an OCR-initiated HIPAA Privacy and Security Audit, as well as a practice management company and a medical center, each in connection with OCR initiated HIPAA Data Breach Investigations and state AG related audits.



  • Presenter, “California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA),” Counseling and Compliance – Health Care and Life Sciences – Roundtable Discussions, New York (October 7, 2019) and Chicago (November 14, 2019)
  • Presenter, “Sharing Health Data:  Challenges and Solutions,” Privacy + Security Forum (October 21, 2019 - October 23, 2019) 
  • Presenter, “From Innovation to Solutions: Building Strategic Partnership in an Evolving Digital Health Landscape,” Ropes & Gray Digital Health Forum (September 18, 2019) 
  • Panelist, “Value-Based Health Care: Strategic Partnerships,” Value-Based Health Care: New Models for Success Conference, San Francisco (April 10, 2019)
  • Presenter, “ONC and CMS Interoperability, Information Blocking, and Patient Access Proposed Rules – What You Need To Know,” Ropes & Gray Webinar (April 2019)
  • Presenter, “Convergence: When Device, Pharma and Digital Health Companies Become Providers,” IPMI 2019 Conference (March 4, 2019)
  • Presenter, “Use of Data in Value Based Care Initiatives: Reconciling Data Sharing and Individual Privacy Concerns,” Privacy & Security Forum (October 5, 2018)
  • Moderator, “Navigating Reimbursement and Costs in Healthcare,” Kayo Private Equity Summit (October 3, 2018)
  • Panelist, “The Importance of Data in Value-based Health Care,” Will Value-based Care Save the Health Care System? Conference at Harvard Law School Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics (March 2, 2018)
  • Presenter, “Data Aggregation: Risk, Reward and Responsibility,” Privacy & Security Forum (October 2017)
  • Presenter, “Health Care Fraud Enforcement Summit,” Legal 500 (October 2017) 
  • Co-chair, “Health Privacy and Security Intensive Day,” Privacy & Security Forum (October 2017)
  • Presenter, “Cyber-Hygiene Every Day Keeps Health-Care Ransomware Attacks Away,” Bloomberg Law’s Reassess, Reinforce, Resolve: Cybersecurity Best Practices in Health Care (September 2017)
  • Presenter, “Challenges & Innovations In The Transition To Value-Based Healthcare,” Consero’s Healthcare General Counsel Forum (October 2016)
  • Presenter, “Breach Response: Investigations, Prosecutions and What to Do,” Information Security Media Group Fraud & Breath Prevention Summit, New York (August 2016)
  • Presenter, “When Government Oversight Goes Wrong,” Information Security Media Group Fraud & Breach Prevention Summit, Chicago (June 2016)
  • Presenter, “Mind Your Data: Privacy, Portability, and Process,” Consero GC Forum, Nashville (September 2015)
  • JD, with honors, The George Washington University Law School
  • BA, Northwestern University, Phi Beta Kappa
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