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Former CMS Administrator: "'Blunt Instrument' Policies an Increasingly Bad Fit in Era of Personalized Health Care"
Date:5/16/2008

McClellan questions "current pathway of short term patches" in health care

policy reform

ORLANDO, Fla., May 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Recent legislative emphasis on price negotiation and physician reimbursement as a means to reduce health care costs are nothing more than "short term patches" that hold no potential for truly reforming health care, former Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Dr. Mark McClellan told hundreds of health care decision makers today in delivering the keynote address at Medco Health Solutions, Inc. (NYSE: MHS) 2008 Drug Trend "Predictions" Symposium.

"We don't seem to be making much progress politically; it's easy to be cynical when it comes to health care," said McClellan, current Director of the Engelberg Center for Health Care Reform and Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institute. "Just focusing on cost reduction doesn't do much to solve the problem of getting more value for what we are spending."

McClellan characterized as unsustainable short-term strategies such as across-the-board reductions in Medicare reimbursement fees for physicians and coverage policies that prevent access to the latest biomedical technologies; yet indicated a shift is clearly afoot within both political parties as candidates move towards a value-based, quality-focused approach to improving care for millions of Americans.

"There simply isn't any additional funding available for new health care programs, but this presents the foundation for changing health care," said McClellan. "Each of the political candidates is demonstrating a new emphasis on improving quality and efficiency of care."

McClellan highlighted improved management of chronic disease
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SOURCE Medco Health Solutions, Inc.
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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