Press Statement
Women’s Health Expert Lauds Obama Administration Announcement of Goals and Timeline to Shift Medicare Reimbursements from Volume to Value

“The initiative Secretary Burwell announced today will have a profound impact in transforming our health care system into one that better meets the needs of patients and families. This is a historic moment and a pivotal step in making our health care system more patient- and family-centered. A payment system that rewards quality rather than quantity has the potential to improve not just health care, but the quality of life for all Americans.

This strategy is not just about lowering costs; it will change how care is delivered and help providers and patients work together to achieve the ‘Triple Aim’ of better care, better health, and lower costs. Payment reform is a lever to advance a health care system where providers of all types work together, sharing responsibility and accountability for the patients, families and communities they serve, the quality of care they deliver, the outcomes they achieve, and the resources they use.

For patients and families, the promise of payment reform is better care coordination; having a trusted primary care provider and care team; access to the right care at the right time; better information, tools and supports; health information technology that facilitates engagement and two-way communication; and measurement for transparency, payment and quality improvement. The patients likely to benefit the most are those with the greatest health care needs — the woman with high blood pressure, diabetes and heart problems, the complex cancer patient, the frail elderly parent with multiple specialists and a dozen prescriptions.

Fully realizing the promise of payment reform will require changes in attitudes and behaviors — a true shift in culture, not just for providers and payers but also for patients and families. We cannot achieve our goals without full participation and engagement of patients and families, and consumers cannot be expected to change their behavior if they are not full partners in the reform process. We must make patients and families co-creators not only of their own health, but of the health care system, as well; they must be genuine partners in shaping how payment reform is implemented and new models of care are designed.

In effect, the ‘Triple Aim’ is a patient- and family-centered health care system. Partnering with patients, families and advocates is a smart way to drive change. Today, Secretary Burwell created a platform for transformational reform. I am convinced that if we welcome patients, families and consumers as partners in shaping improvements to our health care system, we will realize the promise of this moment.”

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About the National Partnership for Women & Families

The National Partnership for Women & Families is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, reproductive health and rights, access to quality, affordable health care and policies that help all people meet the dual demands of work and family.

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