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PERSPECTIVE

Reframing The Debate Over Health Care Reform: The Role Of System Performance And Affordability

Kenneth E. Thorpe
former advisor to Bill Clinton

The failure to pass comprehensive national health care reform requires a new approach for framing and structuring the debate. Since 85 percent of Americans have health insurance, framing the debate around the affordability of coverage is important. More important is understanding the factors responsible for driving growth in spending, and crafting effective interventions. Our work shows that much of the rise in spending is linked to the rise in the prevalence of treated disease—much of which is preventable. Reform strategies that address this issue are not inherently partisan and may prove to be a fruitful starting point for launching the debate.

 

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