"The time is now to change the current direction of health care," DMAA says in its "Principles for Health Care Reform." DMAA represents organizations and individuals dedicated to health and wellness promotion, disease management and other services along the population health improvement continuum.
In making its case for reform, DMAA references projections by the Medicare Trustees of "unsustainable"
DMAA President and CEO Tracey Moorhead says her members are encouraged by President-elect Barack Obama's vocal support for prevention and wellness and his choice of former Senate majority leader Tom Daschle, a champion for value in health care, as Health and Human Services Secretary.
"Like Mr. Obama, we believe our nation's economic future is tied inexorably to a more efficient, quality-focused health care system," she says. "We must demand and receive better value for our health care dollars and align incentives across all stakeholders - providers, purchasers and consumers - toward improving the health of populations through evidence-based care."
Health care reform's goal should be to improve quality and efficiency of care for all consumers, DMAA says. Broad-scale reform must:
* Seek to improve the health of the entire population;
* Increase access to affordable health care coverage options;
* Center on the needs of consumers;
* Improve consumer health knowledge and confidence;
* Encourage engagement and accountability for patients, their families and caregivers;
* Reward value and quality across all payers and providers;
* Promote integrated, coordinated care;
* Increase the availability of primary and preventive care
* Promote transparency of price and quality;
* Support providers who implement health information technology to improve safety and coordination;
* Implement a national health data repository;
* Include rigorous evaluation of clinical and administrative interventions, with feedback loops to continuously improve health care delivery; and
* Support the continued use of tax benefits to expand insurance coverage.
DMAA and its members, Moorhead said, can contribute much as policymakers begin the reform process. "Our members offer valuable experience in the design and evaluation of integrated population health programs and consumer and caregiver engagement, education and support," she says. "These areas of expertise will be critical as we redesign our health care system and shift our focus to evidence-based prevention and care for the entire population."
A complete copy of the DMAA health care reform principles is available at www.dmaa.org.
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About DMAA: The Care Continuum Alliance
DMAA: The Care Continuum Alliance convenes all stakeholders providing services along the continuum of care for population health improvement, including health and wellness promotion, disease management and care coordination. Through advocacy, research and promotion of best practices, DMAA advances population-based strategies to improve care quality and outcomes and reduce preventable costs for individuals with and at risk of chronic conditions. DMAA represents more than 200 corporate and individual stakeholders, including wellness, disease and care management organizations, pharmaceutical manufacturers and benefit managers, health information technology innovators, biotechnology innovators, employers, physicians, nurses and other health care professionals, and researchers and academicians. Learn more at www.dmaa.org.