Health reform in 2009 seems very different from health reform in 1994, says RWJF President and CEO Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, M.D., M.B.A., who in 1994 co-chaired the White House working group on Improving Quality in Health Care. Back then, "quality provisions weren’t really a significant part of the discussion," she said in a speech before Aligning Forces for Quality representatives on November 20, 2009, in Phoenix, Ariz.
There are important differences between now and then, she added, and many of these changes have everything to do with what Algning Forces is all about. This time, quality and disparities are very much part of the discussion.
"In both the Senate and the House bills that are currently under consideration, we are now seeing attention paid to measurement, public reporting, payment fixes, delivery system approaches, health information technology, and disparities," Lavizzo-Mourey said. "We may be able to endlessly argue about whether these provisions are the right ones, and whether they go far enough to fix our broken health care systems, but we should feel good about how much the current health reform debate has absorbed the health care challenges we deal with on a day-to-day basis."