Since 2008, American health care has been in turmoil. Accounting for 18% of all goods and services in the US economy, it is massive--and a significant factor of business and government costs, of family financial decisions, and of communities and their viability.
Things continue to change:
--The Affordable Care Act has restructured health insurance. I believe our State exchange serves Idaho purchasers well, but we need to look at other opportunities to expand coverage. With less uninsured individuals, there will be less "cost shift" to those having insurance and better health and productivity of Idaho workers.
--Transformational activities offer real opportunities to improve quality and to control costs. Things like Medical Homes, Telemedicine, and data-driven decisions will improve value and health outcomes.
--Idaho is catching up on health delivery system changes--EMS and trauma services (we will no longer be one of 2 states without an organized system), prescription drug abuse, immunization financing (with a process that saves Idahoans millions of dollars each year), and new models of physician and hospital payment focused on outcome not number of services.
--Mental health and Substance use disorder services continue to be insufficient and poorly funded.
I am pleased to have initiated or lead several of these projects, and hope to be able to continue using my experience and expertise to help Idahoans.