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SCORING SAVINGS: How Can Quality Improvement Reduce Health Care Costs?

Monday, July 13, 2009

As the health reform debate heats up in summertime Washington, discussions center around how to make our current system more efficient, provide better value for the dollars spent, and extend coverage to those without it. The Senate Finance Committee options papers and the House tri-committee report devote whole sections to proposals to reduce health care costs. These proposals consider ways to find savings from working more efficiently, and slowing the growth curve -- savings that could help pay the substantial cost of comprehensive health reform.

A full discussion of the issues looks at both federal spending and at national expenditures on health. How can the private sector contribute to a slowing of national health care expenditures? Are there examples of models that have been implemented in the marketplace and demonstrated they can save money? If incorporated into reform, how much of an impact would they have on the federal budget? What are the constraints that prevent the Congressional Budget Office from scoring such savings? What about the impact on total national health expenditures? What are the respective roles of providers, consumers and legislators in changing the way we do business in health care?

To address these and related questions, the Alliance for Health Reform and the United Health Foundation sponsored a July 13 briefing. Panelists were Len Nichols, director of the Health Policy Program at the New America Foundation; Simon Stevens, executive vice president of the UnitedHealth Group and chairman of the UnitedHealth Center for Health Reform & Modernization; Gail Wilensky, senior fellow at Project HOPE; and Janet Marchibroda, chief healthcare officer at IBM. Ed Howard of the Alliance moderated.  


 Ed Howard, Alliance for Health Reform, Moderator
 Len Nichols, New America Foundation, Speaker
 Simon Stevens, UnitedHealth Center for Reform and Modernization, Speaker
 Gail Wilensky, Project HOPE, Speaker
 Janet Marchibroda, IBM, Speaker
(Click on the camera icon to see a video of the speaker's presentation.)

Transcript, Event Summary and/or Webcast and Podcast

Transcript: SCORING SAVINGS: How Can Quality Improvement Reduce Health Care Costs? (Adobe Acrobat PDF), 7/13/2009
Event Summary: SCORING SAVINGS: How Can Quality Improvement Reduce Health Care Costs? (Word Document), 7/13/2009
Full Webcast/Podcast: Scoring Savings: How Can Quality Improvement Reduce Health Care Costs?

The full webcast and podcast for this briefing, as well as videos of individual speakers' presentations, are provided by Kaiser Family Foundation.

Speaker Presentations

Simon Stevens' Presentation (PowerPoint), 7/13/2009
Len Nichols' Presentation (PowerPoint), 7/13/2009
Gail Wilensky's Presentation (PowerPoint), 7/13/2009
Janet Marchibroda's Presentation (PowerPoint), 7/13/2009

(If you want to download one or more slides from these presentations, contact us at info@allhealth or click here for instructions.)

Source Materials

Industry Letter to Obama (Adobe Acrobat PDF), Multiple Organizations, 7/13/2009
The Budgetary Treatment of Proposals to Change the Nations Health Insurance System (Adobe Acrobat PDF), Congressional Budget Office, 5/27/2009
Speaker Biographies (Word Document), Alliance for Health Reform, 7/13/2009
Source List (Word Document), Alliance for Health Reform, 7/13/2009
Scoring Savings Agenda (Word Document), Alliance for Health Reform, 7/13/2009
SCORING SAVINGS: How Can Quality Improvement Reduce Health Care Costs? (Word Document), , 7/13/2009

Offsite Materials (briefing documents saved on other websites)

Hospital Strains to Cut Elder Care Costs, Boston Globe, 5/17/2009
Health CEO's for Health Reform Executive Summary (Adobe Acrobat PDF),New America Foundation, 6/12/2009
Health Care Reform and the Federal Budget, Congressional Budget Office, 6/16/2009
Options for Financing Health Reform: Comparing the Impact of Selected Policy Options (Adobe Acrobat PDF),Commonwealth Fund, 6/1/2009
A Painless Way to Hold Down Health Costs?, National Public Radio, 6/29/2009
How Safeway is Cutting Healthcare Costs, Wall Street Journal, 6/12/2009
Cost Concerns As Obama Pushes Health Issue, New York Times, 6/16/2009
Slowing the Growth of Health Care Costs - Lessons from Regional Variation, New England Journal of Medicine, 2/26/2009
Senate Finance MedPAC Health Proposal Needs Savings Guarantee, Heritage Foundation, 6/26/2009
Initial Lessons From the First National Demonstration Project on Practice Transformation to.., Annals of Family Medicine, 6/1/2009
Financing Health Care Reform, Center for American Progress, 6/1/2009
Details on Medicare Prescription Drug Deal Remain Murky, Commonwealth Fund , 7/13/2009
An American Solution: Quality and Affordable Health Care (Adobe Acrobat PDF),House Tri - Committee , 7/13/2009
A Look at Health Care Plans in Congress, Associated Press, 7/13/2009
Community Care of North Carolina (Adobe Acrobat PDF),Kaiser Family Foundation, 7/13/2009
Hospitals Reach Deal With Administration, Washington Post, 7/13/2009
Reforming Medicare's Physician Payment Scheme (Adobe Acrobat PDF),New England Journal of Medicine, 2/12/2009
The Massachusetts Experience: Can it Inform the National Debate?, Healthcare Financial Management Association, 6/1/2009
Health Care Cost Containment - How Technology Can Cut Red Tape and Simplify Health Care Admin (Adobe Acrobat PDF),UnitedHealth Group, 6/1/2009
Federal Health Care Cost Containment - How in Practice Can it be Done? (Adobe Acrobat PDF),UnitedHealth Group, 5/1/2009


Len Nichols, director of the Health Policy Program at the New America Foundation, explained why coverage expansion and payment reform should go hand in hand at the July 13 briefing cosponsored by the United Health Foundation.

Simon Stevens, executive vice president of the UnitedHealth Group, described several ways UnitedHealth is curbing health care costs at the July 13 briefing cosponsored by the company.

Janet Marchibroda, chief healthcare officer at IBM, provided examples of how IBM is working with its employees to reducing health care spending while improving employee health at the July 13 briefing cosponsored by the United Health Foundation.

Gail Wilensky, senior fellow at Project HOPE, discussed areas of consensus concerning future health care savings and areas where consensus is lacking at the July 13 briefing cosponsored by the United Health Foundation.


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