“There is strength in numbers – in policy making as well as purchasing health care,” said Karen Timberlake, principal at the Wisconsin offices of Michael Best Strategies.
The Alliance has partnered with Michael Best Strategies to keep employers informed of pending federal and state legislation that may impact employee health benefit plans.
Several staff members of Michael Best Strategies spoke about the past year in health policy and what lies ahead in 2018 at The Alliance’s Health Policy event.
Review the health policy presentation by Michael Best Strategies
The Alliance’s Health Policy Platform
The Health Policy Platform of The Alliance focuses on increasing health care value while improving the quality and safety of care.
This platform is based on the following four planks:
- Cost and Quality Transparency – The Prerequisite to Meaningful Change in Health Care
- Aligning Incentives for Providers – Redesigning Payment Mechanisms to Promote Better Value
- Supporting Consumers
- The Health Care Marketplace – Preserve What Works, Fix What Doesn’t and Remain Open to Change
“Health policy decisions – legislative and executive – can have a direct impact on members of The Alliance and on The Alliance as an organization,” said Timberlake.
The Alliance’s Health Policy Committee
Michael Best Strategies and The Alliance understand that policy making is a bipartisan, strategic conversation.
Michael Best Strategies also leads the employer-members of The Alliance’s Health Policy Committee. This committee plays a key role in charting our course toward effective advocacy work at both the state and federal level.
The Alliance’s Health Policy Committee:
- Recommends a health policy platform and resolutions to guide decision and action on public policy and draft legislation.
- Provides advice and makes recommendations regarding The Alliance’s position on legislative proposals and regulatory actions.
- Communicates with The Alliance’s Board of Directors and general membership regarding health policy matters.
Wisconsin Legislative Overview and Preview of Upcoming Elections
Nathan Houdek, principal at the Wisconsin offices of Michael Best Strategies, covered the legislative highlights and previewed the upcoming fall 2018 state elections.
State-based re-insurance through the Governor’s Health Care Stability Plan was a hot topic recently in the Wisconsin legislature. Although this does not directly affect employers, it is a part of the health care ecosystem.
Therefore the discussion of state-based re-insurance, “may create a ‘ripple effect’ for the employer-members of The Alliance,” said Houdek. “This is a topic to watch.”
In Wisconsin, fall elections on the ballot include several high-profile races. Elections on the Nov. 6 ballot include: Governor/Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, Treasurer, half of the State Senate, State Representatives in the General Assembly (all 99 districts), all eight U.S. House of Representatives, and one U.S. Senate seat.
Illinois Legislative Overview and Preview of Upcoming Elections
Stephanie Vojas, principal at the Illinois offices of Michael Best Strategies, talked about the past year in the Illinois state legislature and highlighted the upcoming fall 2018 state elections.
The Illinois Hospital Assessment Tax Program, managed care and the opioid crisis have all been hot topics this year in the Illinois legislature.
The increase of block payments versus payment per facility may transform small, rural hospitals into outpatient facilities. Expect to see more health care changes from the Illinois Hospital Assessment Tax Program.
The CDC reported that the Midwest has recently experienced a 70 percent increase in opioid overdoses.
The opioid crisis is one of the most significant public health and safety crises Illinois has ever faced.
There have been numerous legal cases regarding opioids. “In fact, the city of Chicago is currently suing several opioid manufacturers,” said Vojas.
Learn more about our Alliance Learning Circle event, The Opioid Epidemic: Its Impact in the Workplace
The Nov. 6 Illinois election ballot includes several high-profile races, including: Governor/Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State Comptroller, Treasurer, State Senators in certain districts and State Representatives in the General Assembly (all 118 districts).
We’re Watching the Health Policy Landscape for Our Members
The Alliance strives to provide timely and objective health policy information to employer-members, become a resource to public policy makers and take action on issues that are likely to impact our employer-members.
Are you an employer who wants to know the latest in health policy issues and legislation?
Watch The Alliance’s blog for monthly health policy articles written by the staff of Michael Best Strategies.
With your help, we are fulfilling our mission to move health care forward by controlling costs, improving quality and engaging individuals in their health.
Previously, Lisa worked at a founding member of The Alliance for 17 years as a marketing specialist. Lisa received her master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater in Communications with an emphasis in Corporate Communications.
Read Lisa's latest posts.
Latest posts by Lisa Wendorff
- Employer Connections: Benefit Design Challenges and Solutions for You - May 13, 2019
- How to Give Your Employees Access to High-Value Primary Care - April 30, 2019
- Caregiving Benefit Resources and Tips for Employers - February 5, 2019