Century Foundation Reports on Ways Forward on Health Care Reform

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Century Foundation Reports on Ways Forward on Health Care Reform

On January 11, The Century Foundation hosted Health Reform 2020, the first conference of its kind to explore proposals to leverage public programs to improve affordable, quality coverage. Leading experts from across the country convened in Washington, D.C. to discuss the path forward for health care reform leading into the 2020 presidential election, including the opportunities and pitfalls of different public plan options and reform proposals. The discussion, which can be seen here, was grounded by articles published in the January issue of The American Prospect that outlined approaches to expand Medicare, Medicaid, and hybrid options. The discussants explored the topic of reform from three different angles.

First, the public plan debate was contextualized by looking at its past, present, and future.

  • Paul Starr, co-editor of The American Prospect, reviewed the history of health reform, reminding us that, “Every major progressive health program in the United States was developed on the rebound from earlier setbacks….”
  • Anna Greenberg, a public opinion expert, illustrated how the attacks on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and existing coverage in the past year have increased support for reform. Her remarks included the recent finding that 47 percent of Americans now support a government-run health system.
  • And Anita Dunn, a strategist who worked for President Obama during the passage of the ACA, said we are in a “good place” for this next round of reform. After reviewing the lessons learned, she concluded: “The goal of universal coverage—lifetime quality care …—is shared; the policy differences will be debated, but communicating about it in ways that will resonate with the people who are going to be covered is critical….”

After that discussion, three health policy experts offered analytic perspectives on how best to develop, sequence, and understand public plan options...

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