AHIP Board Backs Hill Reforms Plus 7

HealthWire reported today that AHIP is supporting the concept of a Federal
Health Board among other policy goals.

The board of America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) at a
press conference in Washington today proposed 7 significant new health reform
innovations as part of a package of ideas presented as a first-cut
‘comprehensive’ reform plan. While details were sketchy, a close reading of the
new AHIP language shows it also endorses 13 out of 16 features of pending major
Capitol Hill proposals.

The seven new health reform proposals from AHIP added to the
mix include:

·        
Congress will set a specific target for reducing
national health spending over a 5-year period (from a 6.6% to 4.7%
increase)

·        
A new independent federal board (akin to the
Federal Reserve) will develop a specific action plan for reducing health
costs in the U.S.

·        
A national multi-payer online portal will give all
providers a uniform method to communicate with all health plans on eligibility
and benefits

·        
All payers will voluntarily adopt uniform national
standards
for quality, reporting and information technology versus today’s ‘piecemeal’ basis

·        
Small employers will under federal law be offered an
essential benefits plan” available nationwide and exempt from state
mandates

·        
Emergency rooms will be replaced as a poor source of routine primary care for the uninsured by
a planned and organized national
system

·        
Low-income patients will get bankruptcy protection
from medical claims under a system of tax credits tied to percentage of income
spent