Michael L. Millenson

ACO Fairy Tale Faces a Rumpelstiltskin Moment — Guest Opinion

KHN Original

When writing the final ACO rules, CMS has the chance to spin the dross of the current regulations into something of genuine value to providers, even if it’s not quite Rumpelstiltskin-quality gold. If the feds fail, it is all of us, not just those on Medicare program, who could live unhappily ever after.

The GOP’s Health Policy Cynics

KHN Original

Although cynics may claim conservative credentials, their view of government is really nothing more than a quarrel about its cost. It brings to mind Oscar Wilde’s immortal phrase, “The cynic knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.”

No Outrage, No Story In Dead Patients

KHN Original

A good story involves drama and conflict. It’s a great story when a federal judge with Republican ties nixing the president’s achievement in ensuring access to care for all. But a couple of reports about hospitals avoidably killing tens of thousands of Americans once they have that access to care apparently has little, if any, drama at all.

The Health Reform (Almost) Everyone Loves

KHN Original

Come with me to the land of happy health reform. It is a place where Republicans and Democrats find common ground, a place where physicians, hospitals and health insurers sit together as partners, a place where criticism is respectful, not rancorous. It is the world of Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs).

The Health Reform That Scares Both Parties

KHN Original

Twenty-seven years ago, President Ronald Reagan and a Congress split between Republican and Democratic control agreed to a radical new payment scheme for Medicare. The resulting legislation trimmed billions of dollars from the federal budget and caused medical inflation to plummet, yet still maintained quality of care.

Answers From Iowa

KHN Original

Perhaps the political and media elite shouldn’t wait for an impending presidential election to pay attention to what Iowa has to say.

Bringing the Prius to American Medicine

KHN Original

President Obama has repeatedly promised that providing every American affordable access to quality health care won’t cost more money than we’ll save through reform, but he’s recently raised the stakes even further. Health care reform, he has said, would “foster economic growth” and “unleash America’s economic potential.”

Money, Medicine and Myths

KHN Original

I was on a phone call with fellow health policy types back during the presidential primary season when the conversation turned to pay-for-performance.