Public input needed to advance reforms

System changes are never easy, as a story published yesterday by The Connecticut Mirror highlights. Reporter Arielle Levin Becker delves into the planning process for the State Innovation Model (SIM) and the steering committee’s hope of creating a system where there is near- universal use of the same measures and incentives.

Few can dispute that our current system of payment is broken. There is little care coordination often resulting in individuals having the same test repeated for different specialists and each time the individual or their insurer has to pay for the test. Universal Health Care Foundation believes the SIM planning process presents a timely opportunity for our state to address these and other flaws in the system.

In addition to giving the state a chance to design a better model of delivering and financing care, the SIM process opens the door to engaging people in a much-needed conversation about cost and quality, as well as access, as the new reforms are being implemented.

Universal Health Care Foundation President Frances G. Padilla stresses this point in the news article, saying, “Improving care quality and controlling costs is key to ensuring that the expansion of health insurance coverage under federal health reform is sustainable.”

The system created through the State Innovation Model will need to do both – improve care quality and control costs – the question is how do we do that. The public will have an opportunity to weigh-in on this and other questions this month and in October. A diverse range of consumer voices and input is essential to shaping a proposal that ultimately puts the needs of the people of our state first.

What ideas would you suggest the state consider as part of this process?

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