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Healthcare Experts Discuss Current and Future Challenges of Chronic Care on NewTalk
Date:6/24/2008

Online Forum Enables Public To Join The Discussion

NEW YORK, June 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 133 million Americans suffer from diabetes, asthma and other chronic conditions. The medical care costs for these patients account for more than 75% of the nation's $2 trillion medical care costs. And as the U.S. population continues to age over the next few decades, its medical bills are expected to spiral further out of control, even as the quality of care diminishes.

National healthcare leaders from across the country will explore the impending crisis and how to solve it in a unique, three-day discussion at NewTalk (http://www.newtalk.org), the online forum that tackles tough issues that are inadequately addressed in national political debate.

Titled "Chronic Care: Do We Need an Entirely New Model of Delivery?" the discussion will run from Tues., June 24, through Thurs., June 26 with participating experts joining online from locations across the country. Distinguished participants will include:

-- Troyen A. Brennan, M.D., Chief Medical Officer, Aetna, Inc. (Hartford, CT)

-- Lawrence Casalino, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Health Studies, University of Chicago (Chicago, IL)

-- Susan Dentzer, Editor-in-Chief, Health Affairs and respected health policy journalist (Bethesda, MD)

-- Brent C. James, M.D., Chief Quality Officer, Intermountain Healthcare (Salt Lake City, UT)

-- Nancy Johnson, former Member of Congress and chair of the Health Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee (R-CT)

-- Tim Jost, Professor of Law, Washington and Lee University School of Law (Lexington, VA)

-- David B. Kendall, Senior Fellow for Health Policy, Progressive Policy Institute (Washington, DC)

-- Mark McClellan M.D., Ph.D., Director, Engelberg Center for Health Care Reform, Brookings Institution (Washington, DC)

-- Peggy O'Kane, President, National Committee for Quality Assurance (Washington, DC)

-- Carol Raphael, President and CEO, Visiting Nurse Service of New York (New York, NY)

-- John Rother, Group Executive Officer of Policy and Strategy, AARP (Washington, DC)

-- Bruce Vladeck, Executive Director, Ernst & Young Health Sciences Advisory Services (New York, NY)

-- John Wennberg, Director, Dartmouth University Center for Evaluative Studies (Hanover, NH)

"Solving the inefficiencies of chronic care is vital to our health care system," said Philip K. Howard, Chair of Common Good, the nonpartisan organization that created NewTalk. "This extraordinary group of health care leaders can discuss candidly the big changes and tough choices that are almost certainly required."

Launched earlier this month, NewTalk (http://www.newtalk.org) offers a new kind of conversation: one that acknowledges reality, uncovers common ground, and finds a responsible way forward. It takes advantage of the Internet, letting each discussion unfold over several days with notable participants contributing from across the country. Recent NewTalk discussions have included such renowned American leaders as Michael Bloomberg, Mayor of the City of New York; Bill Bradley, former presidential candidate and U.S. Senator, and Shirley Franklin, Mayor of Atlanta, among others.

On NewTalk each week, national leaders will bring their knowledge and experience to bear on the most pressing domestic issues in education, the economy, the environment, health care, and justice. NewTalk is a virtual meetinghouse, with experts and thought-leaders from different points of view confronting America's hard challenges and debating its tough choices. Members of the public are invited to comment online as each discussion unfolds.
Future forum topics being developed include:

-- "What is the role of the courts in setting social policy?"

-- "Over-spending on entitlements: How close is the cliff?"

-- "Do we need a basic rewrite of No Child Left Behind?" -- "Is nuclear power essential to addressing climate change and energy independence?"
-- "Is American infrastructure crumbling?"

Recently completed discussions, which are archived on NewTalk, include:

-- "Is it possible to fix government?"

-- "Should higher test scores be the main goal of school reform?"

-- "How can we restore Americans' sense of optimism?"

NewTalk was created and is supported by Common Good (http://www.commongood.org) in recognition of the need to improve the quality of public discourse on a broad range of topics.


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SOURCE Common Good
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