Pixel Tracker

Wednesday, November 21 , 2018, 9:41 am | Mostly Cloudy 64º


Tom Donohue: Let Business Lead on Health-Care Reform

As President Ronald Reagan said, “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”

While much of the attention throughout the health reform debate has been on the role of government, it is the private sector that is leading the country to adopt innovative solutions to our health-care deficiencies.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce believes that private, market-based solutions can improve the quality of health care, decrease the cost of services, and expand access to affordable coverage and care. American businesses have already driven health-care solutions that are tailored to the needs of their employees and bolster transparency, reward innovation, and encourage health and wellness.

Greater transparency enables consumers to understand the price and quality of health services so that they can make informed decisions to improve the value of their care and drive competition in the marketplace. The Hospital Quality Alliance, a public-private partnership sponsored by the chamber, is leading an effort to improve transparency in hospital care. By publishing information on services for participating hospitals, we can reward providers that lower cost and improve quality.

New value-based insurance products are designed to promote the use of services that provide the greatest clinical value, and they help make each health-care dollar go further. If we make necessary treatments less expensive and unnecessary care more expensive, these plans can improve health outcomes and decrease costs. Many private employers are adopting these plans as a way to encourage employees to use high-value, low-cost services.

Private health insurance exchanges offer a new option for employees to take a set amount of money provided by their employers and pick a plan based on their individual needs and priorities. These online insurance marketplaces enable consumers to shop from a variety of health plans through interactive technology.

Employers are also driving down health-care costs through workplace wellness initiatives. Health promotion efforts can lower expenses by preventing and treating chronic diseases and raising workplace productivity.

To highlight private-sector efforts, the Chamber of Commerce this week will hold its first-ever Health Care Summit, Rewarding Innovation and Improving Transparency. Health system representatives, policy experts and business leaders will come together to discuss strategies to strengthen our health-care system. The business community has shown leadership in advancing solutions and will be a critical voice in finding effective health-care reform that protects American jobs and the employers that create them.

— Tom Donohue is president and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.