Nielsen: Thoughts from HIGPA Expo

Implementation of Healthcare Reform

Stay Focused, Engaged and Very Much Involved

 

Dr. Tevi Troy was the opening keynote speaker for the 2010 Health Industry Group Purchasing Association (HIGPA) Expo, Oct. 25. Tevi Troy is a Visiting Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute, a Senior Fellow at the Potomac Institute, and a writer and consultant on healthcare and domestic policy. From 2007 to 2009, Dr. Troy was the Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dr. Troy dedicated a dozen years to public service, working at senior levels in the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, executive agencies, and the White House.

Dr. Troy provided a brief summary of the critical events leading up to the passing of President Obama’s healthcare reform initiative. Key points included:

  • The President spent an immense amount of time on healthcare reform. Time that most presidents would have spent on other domestic and foreign affairs.
  • The healthcare reform legislation is “once in a generation (or more) change in healthcare.”
  • Healthcare spending is enormous.
  • With massive spending comes opportunities for savings.
  • It’s not over – implementation is an enormous task that will demand huge amounts of time and effort by both the public and private sectors
  • Average complex legislation takes 800 days to fully implement.
  • The healthcare legislation was far more complex than average.
  • Healthcare reform implementation will be very long, tedious and difficult.
  • There are multiple ways the legislative process and implementation can be slowed down and/or influenced.
  • Dr. Troy predicted there will be multiple “gorilla tactics” to slow down and change what is finally implemented.

 

A major point of Dr. Troy’s remarks was that there will be multiple and very significant opportunities for input and influence as implementation takes place.  Dr. Troy encouraged HIGPA and all participants at the HIGPA meeting to stay focused, informed and very much involved as implementation takes place.

“Be sure you have a voice in this very important process that involves regulators, the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate and the White House. You need an identity, credibility and high visibility in order to have your voice heard and in order to be effective in influencing the massive implementation process that will take place over the next several years.”

I happen to know and respect Curtis Rooney (President of HIGPA) and many of the HIGPA board members. There is no doubt in my mind that HIGPA will be a significant and effective player in monitoring and influencing the long and tedious healthcare reform implementation process, as it takes place over the next several years.    

As Dr. Troy stated, “It’s not over – implementation is an enormous task that will demand huge amounts of time and effort by both the public and private sectors.” It is in your best interests to stay focused, engaged and very much involved in influencing that which is ultimately implemented.

Copyright © 2010 by Dan Nielsen, dnielsen@nihcl.com

Founder, National Institute for Healthcare Leadership   www.nihcl.com

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