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Health Care Industry Leaders to Unveil Broad Plan to Cut Costs

May 11, 2009
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The nation’s largest hospital, physician and insurance trade groups have pledged to voluntarily adopt measures that aim to lower overall health care costs by roughly $2 trillion during the next decade.

Representatives from the American Hospital Association, the American Medical Association, America’s Health Insurance Plans, the Service Employees International Union and others are set to meet with President Barack Obama on Monday, May 11, to publicly seal their support for health care reform, one crafted between the group’s members in private but which closely mirror federal plans now on the table.

A senior White House official, who spoke on background because details of the plan have not yet been made public, said that “this step has massive consequences. When we talk about bending the curve on cost growth, this is exactly what’s needed.”

At the outset, the savings would come as providers adopt new, “bundled” payments for services, coupled with shifts toward more coordinated care.

The moves would also come first from the private payer side, though plans to do the same within the Medicare program are a major part of the president’s proposal to reshape the U.S. health care sector this year.

The group has wagered that by making care more streamlined and efficient, it could greatly cut into how much is spent each year on health care.

Early projections show that five years out, a family of four should see a $2,400 reduction in annual health care costs, and 10 years from now, overall national health care expenditures could be reduced by 3 percent.


Filed by Matthew DoBias of Modern Health Care, a sister publication of Workforce Management. To comment, e-mail editors@workforce.com.

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