Raising Women’s Voices

2020 Vision: Commonwealth Fund’s Innovations for Healthcare

Posted in Affordability, DC Reform, Health Reform Policy Proposals by raisingwomensvoices on February 19, 2009

commonwealthThe Commonwealth Fund‘s Commission on a High Performance Health System issued a report today recommending insurance, payment, and system reforms that will guarantee affordable healthcare coverage for all by 2012, improve health outcomes, and slow spending by as much as $3 trillion by 2020. The US Health system is by far the most expensive in the world, projected to double by 2020, and the plan outlined by the Commission details ways to slow our spending, as well as change the way our healthcare is delivered.

The report proposes a choice of private plans in addition to a new affordable public plan, and requires that everyone have coverage, payable with income-related premiums. The Commission claims that by instituting insurance market reforms that focus competition on outcome and value, insurance would be paid in a “bundled” method, rather than fee-for-service, and would enhance the value of primary care.

The Commission lists five essential strategies necessary for reform:

  • Affordable coverage for all.
  • Align incentives with value and effective cost control.
  • Accountable, accessible, patient-centered, and coordinated care.
  • Aim high to improve quality, health outcomes, and efficiency.
  • Accountable leadership and collaboration to set and achieve national goals.

The new public plan would have lower costs than current individual and small business plans, which The Commission believes would spur those plans to reexamine the way they operate. Indvidviduals and families would wind up saivng the most because of slower growth in premiums and out-of-pocket spending, as well as federal premium assistance and expansion of publis programs. There would be an inscrease in federal spending for the first few years, followed by a rapid decline. In addition, the report notes, “all those enrolled through the exchange would be able to keep their coverage as jobs or circumstances changed”.

As far as actual patient care? The Commission “envisions a health system that provides patients with personal sources of care who know their medical history, ensures timely access, helps coordinate care, and uses essential clinical information to provide the right care with an emphasis on health and disease prevention. Payment and information systems would stimulate and support a patient-centered care system that is coordinated, accessible, and safe”.

For the full report click here: The Path to a High Performance U.S. Health System

sara siegel

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