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Capitol Correspondence - 08.13.18

HHS Secretary Alex Azar Shares Value-Based Systems an HHS Priority at ALEC Conference

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On August 9, 2018, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar gave a speech to the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) during which he laid out the Department’s policy priorities. Of interest to I/DD providers, he discussed market-driven, value-based systems and called upon attendees to explore and advance state-level solutions. Below is a summary of relevant statements within the speech, prepared by Kim Opsahl, ANCOR’s Director of State Partnerships and Special Projects:

  • Instead of relying on “‘Washington bureaucrats’ from determining what value looks like, this administration believes value is best determined by markets and consumers.”
  • As a result, they have a “four-part vision for putting the patient at the center of American health care . . .[by] control[ling] their own health data, provid[ing] them with transparency on price and quality, pioneer[ing] new consumer-focused payment modes, and remov[ing] government burdens.
  • To highlight the impact of government burdens, he shared a recent proposal to radically simplify the Medicare physician documentation and billing system which is estimated to save clinicians 51 hours of paperwork each year.
  • He encouraged attendees to explore and advance state level solutions – looking at “how state and local regulations can be impeding healthcare competition, raising costs for American patients, and depriving them of choices.”

Members interested in Secretary Azar’s discussions of HHS priorities might also be interested in his remarks at the Heritage Foundation, made on July 26, 2018.