MMS Weighs in on Governor’s Payment Reform Bill

Gov. Patrick’s payment reform legislation got the full range of comments today, from the Governor’s own depiction of the legislation as the key to a better world, to the health plans’ concerns that the bill could produce a long list of unintended consequences. The Boston Globe and WBUR’s CommonHealth blog have summaries of what was said.

Our own comments were delivered to the Legislature’s Health Care Finance Committee in writing.  Some major points:

  • Physicians want to help with efforts to contain health care costs.
  • You don’t need an ACO to deliver properly integrated health care.
  • The current pilot projects for patient-centered medical homes and Blue Cross’ new alternative quality contract are good things; they help us learn what works best, and what doesn’t.
  • We need to reduce the practice of defensive medicine.
  • The legislation’s advisory council must include more than just the leaders of state agencies. Health care stakeholders, such as physicians, must have decision-making authority.
  • We don’t support state-mandated rate-setting, or mandated participation in state-sponsored risk reinsurance programs.
  • Don’t forget the patients. The alignment and engagement of patients is necessary for this to work.

Our complete testimony is available here.

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