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Massachusetts Healthcare Reform: Completing the Journey

A guide to understanding where we’ve been and where we are headed

The healthcare system in Massachusetts continues to evolve. We now provide the best healthcare coverage in the country. Health insurance premium rate increases continue to decline. Hospitals are dramatically cutting their expense trend. There is an enormous increase in the amount of publicly available information about healthcare costs, quality, and access, and many government and private sector healthcare changes, improvements and initiatives are underway.

While no one should declare victory, there is no denying the real progress that has been made. Government and private sector leaders can take pride in the progress achieved to date.

Now, as we look forward to future challenges, it’s clear that a balanced approach is required. Government control of the payment and delivery system has already proven to be a flawed approach. But the private market alone is not the answer, either; it too needs guidance at times to help it remain on the right track. We need a system that respects the responsibility of government to protect the public interest and the ability of the private market to be efficient and innovative in providing services and jobs.

This website is designed to assist the public and policymakers in the creation and implementation of a reformed Massachusetts healthcare payment and delivery system.

We'll continually update the site with materials you can use to better understand the complex changes now occurring. Check back frequently.

 

Reform 101

MHA has produced this 16-page Completing the Journey publication to help explain the hospital community's vision for reforming of the state's healthcare payment and delivery system. Completing the Journey explains key reform concepts, discusses reform efforts already underway in the commonwealth, and outlines important considerations that must be kept in mind as reform legislation is constructed.

 

The Essential Facts of Reform

MHA is also producing a series of one-page summations of key reform concepts. Visit here regularly as we expand this resource.

  1. What’s at stake? What is already underway in Massachusetts? What needs to be accomplished with healthcare reform? Read this concise overview paper.
  2. The market IS working! Let’s maintain that success. Learn about the advances already underway to create a more cost-effective healthcare system by clicking here.
  3. When state and federal government decides not to pay for the cost of care provided to patients, they are requiring providers to both give and pay for much of that care. It is a big problem. It contributes to both destabilizing the healthcare system and increasing private insurance premiums. Learn more by clicking here.

 

Six Payment Reform Papers

Over the course of the past two years, MHA delved deep into the payment reform issue and produced six well-received papers that analyzed, and offered recommendations on, issues central to the reform debate. MHA's papers examine the essential societal needs that need to be protected when devising new payment and delivery system reforms, the oversight structures that should govern this massive healthcare transformation, and how consumers and employers would be affected by the necessary benefit designs – among many other topics. To immerse yourself in the details of the Massachusetts healthcare reform effort, please visit MHA’s Payment Reform Series of Whitepapers here.