AHIP President Karen Ignagni offers the health insurance industry’s viewpoint on new reform laws. Photos (c) 2010, Harry Butler, Nashville.
Health Care Council Program Highlights Payers’ Perspective
At the invitation of the Nashville Health Care Council, Karen Ignagni, president and CEO of America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), recently shared the health insurance industry’s viewpoint on new healthcare reform laws. Ignagni, who played a critical role in the healthcare reform debate, addressed more than 200 local healthcare industry executives regarding provisions of the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, including policy development, implementation and potential outcomes.
After an introduction by current AHIP chairperson and CEO of BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Vicky Gregg, Ignagni highlighted innovative programs health plans have implemented to improve the quality and safety of patient care and how these initiatives can serve as models for larger delivery system reforms. She also discussed what health plans are doing to implement the new reforms in the least disruptive way possible while underscoring the need for further efforts to address the skyrocketing cost of medical care.
“Healthcare costs are crushing our economy and placing too heavy of a burden on hard working families,” said Ignagni. “We cannot wait any longer to address this issue. We have to get the growth of healthcare costs under control if we are going to have a sustainable healthcare system and a strong economy.”
She stressed that a workable and sustainable solution for healthcare reform will be a uniquely American blend of public and private influence to preserve benefits for employers and consumers and foster innovation.
Gregg remarked, “Karen and all the attendees at today’s event understand that the future of the healthcare system in this country rests not on the shoulders of just one group but of all stakeholders. It’s all about collaboration and finding innovative solutions to balance the need for expanding access to quality care while maintaining affordability.”
AHIP is a national association based in Washington, D.C. representing nearly 1,300 member companies providing health insurance coverage to more than 200 million Americans. The luncheon programming was the second in the Nashville Health Care Council’s year-long healthcare reform series sponsored by BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee.
“Nashville is home to a large and diverse healthcare community with operations on a national scale,” concluded Council President Caroline Young. “Healthcare reform impacts all of these companies, often in different ways. Today’s and future programs in this policy series will ensure that the Council continues to provide timely and valuable information to our members who are leading healthcare trends across the country.”