Mass. Confronts High Health Costs

Massachusetts, four years into its own version of health reform, is now taking on the issue of spiraling health costs by attempting to change the health care payment system. 

The Associated Press: After Expanding Health Coverage, Mass. Looks To Cut Costs
Four years after Massachusetts embarked on the nation's most ambitious health care overhaul, Gov. Deval Patrick and legislative leaders are stepping up efforts to rein in spiraling insurance costs. ... One way to head in that direction, supporters say, is to gradually move away from a system that pays doctors and hospitals for the number and type of tests and procedures they deliver and instead rewards them for maintaining the overall health of their patients.Getting there may not be easy, given the sometimes competing interests of those involved in the process (LeBlanc, 12/11).

WBUR: Ten Lessons From a Payment Reform Experimenter-In-Chief
went to see Stuart recently because I'd heard that his organization was about to sign a revolutionary new contract with Blue Cross. It would be one of the state’s biggest experiments yet in paying doctors a "global" sum for a patient’s overall care rather than a fee for each procedure (Goldberg, 12/10).

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