Health Policy Boot Camp: 10 days, 13 hours, 57 minutes …

The DHCFP cost trends web page ( starts with a countdown clock, ticking down the minutes to the most anticipated event in state health wonkery: the second annual Cost Trends hearings. Bigger and better. We’re excited for this ball to drop – really.

Clear your calendar. The last 4 days of June (June 27-June 30) are packed with hearings, hearings, and more hearings regarding the three preliminary reports (find them here; we commented on the first two reports on premium trends and price varations, and will post our comments on the third soon) released by the Division of Health Care Finance and Policy. Leaders from government, academia, and industry will come together to review the report’s findings and give their views on what the results mean as we continue down the road to cost containment. We will keep you updated with blog posts, but we encourage consumers to share their testimony. Here’s a rundown of what’s going on each day.

Monday, June 27 (beginning at 9:00 am at Bunker Hill Community College)

  • Statements by Officials – Senate President Murray, Health Care Financing Chairs Moore and Walsh, Secretaries Bigby and Gonzales
  • Review of Analytic findings from the DHCFP and Division of Insurance
  • Testimony of Governor Deval Patrick
  • Review of Findings into Cost Trends and Cost Drivers – Attorney General Martha Coakley
  • Public Testimony

Tuesday, June 28 (beginning at 9:00 am at BHCC)

  • Review of Findings: Price Variation in MA Health Services
  • Response Panel
  • Expert Witness: Consumers’ Role in Cost Containment– Michael Chernew, Ph.D.
  • Response Panel (including Amy Whitcomb Slemmer, Executive Director of HCFA)

Wednesday, June 29 (beginning at 9:00 am at BHCC)

  • Review of Findings: Alternate Payment Methodologies
  • Expert Witness: How Better Payment Systems Can Help Improve Health Quality and Control Costs –Harold Miller
  • Response Panel
  • Review of Findings: Health Resource Planning
  • Expert Witness: Thinking Creatively About the Health Care System We Need For The 21st Century – Cathy Schoen
  • Response Panel

Thursday, June 30 (beginning at 9:00 am at BHCC)

  • Review of Findings: Challenges in Care Coordination
  • Expert Witness: Relational Coordination in Healthcare– Jody Hoffer Gittell, Ph.D.
  • Response Panel
  • Expert Witness: Role of Government and Market in Reducing Health Care Costs– Paul Ginsburg, Ph.D.
  • Response Panel
  • Public Testimony – (stay tuned for an important announcement during this slot).

-Amelia Russo

About HCFA

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