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Governor Kitzhaber Applauds Legislature's Passage of Health Care Transformation

Press Release

Location: Salem, OR

With overwhelming bipartisan support, the Oregon Legislature today passed SB 1580, which implements Coordinated Care Organizations (CCOs) for the Oregon Health Plan. Through CCOs, Oregon will begin to address two of the most vexing problems with health care: it costs too much and does not deliver consistent outcomes. CCOs are projected to save the state some $3 billion over five years by reducing waste and inefficiency and increasing front-end prevention. Additionally, CCOs will be expected to meet a high standard of health outcomes and support prevention, early intervention, and patient-centered care.

"Lower costs come from better health," said Governor Kitzhaber. "With today's vote,the Legislature set Oregon on a path for a better health care system that saves public dollars. This is good for patients, good for the state budget, and good for business."

SB 1580 comes after an extensive public process that involved thousands of Oregonians over the past two years and there are additional opportunities for public input to come.

Passage of the bill allows the state to submit necessary requests to the federal government to allow greater flexibility on how Oregon Health Plan dollars are used for care in CCOs. The state will also be applying for additional federal investments for health system transformation.

Meanwhile, the Oregon Health Authority is preparing for emerging CCOs to apply for approval by the state. More information will be available at:

"We have already heard from communities that are ready to begin providing better care at a lower cost if we give them the flexibility they need through CCOs," says Governor Kitzhaber. "We will work quickly to make that happen."

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