Efforts to implement federal health reform are starting in earnest. Industry stakeholders are already looking closely at a number of key provisions in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111-148) that will strengthen the quality and efficiency of health care in the United States.
On Monday, April 12, 2010 the New America Health Policy Program welcomed several experts to discuss reform initiatives designed to transform our health care delivery system to one that is more patient-centered, coordinated and efficient.
The Health Policy Program facilitated a policy forum consisting of two panels – one to focus on the goals of delivery system reform and how the reform law drives these system changes, and one to discuss reform initiatives already in progress and implementation challenges posed by the reform law. Julie Barnes, Acting Director of the Health Policy Program, and Leif Wellington Haase, Executive Director, California Task Force on Affordable Care, moderated the program.
The panelists discussed the significance of embracing a number of critical reforms that address payment reform, the workforce shortage, care coordination and disease management, provider accountability and quality assurance, patient empowerment, population health, health information technology and system-wide inefficiencies.
While the new reform law provides a good foundation for system-wide changes, the panelists reminded the audience that the bulk of the work starts now. Federal reform encourages industry stakeholders, like state governments, providers, and insurers to assume responsibility for the effective and responsible implementation of reform. As New America’s Micah Weinberg suggested, “We have created a uniquely American medical delivery system … if you can build it.”