BNA Looks to Wouters for Health Reform Analysis
“Effects of Health Reform Law on Life Sciences Seen as Varied” BNA Life Sciences Law & Industry Report
April 23, 2010 - In late March, President Obama signed landmark health reform legislation focused on expanding coverage and implementing payment and delivery system changes, ending a year-long attempt to restructure the health system in the United States. Annemarie Wouters, a senior advisor with Manatt Health Solutions, was interviewed about the effects of the health reform law for an article in BNA Life Sciences Law & Industry Report.
The new laws include some less-heralded provisions that also will affect the life sciences industry, such as expanding comparative effective research, a provision to speed translational discoveries into the marketplace, and a therapeutics discovery tax credit. Wouters told BNA that one interesting aspect of the new laws is the value proposition for medical technologies. She noted that the new laws call for the establishment by 2011 of a National Strategy to Improve Health Care Quality that will include processes to develop quality metrics.
‘‘In recent trends, insurers and patients have been looking to purchase ‘quality,’ through innovations in value-based purchasing or value based benefit design. The act creates several opportunities to expand both of these,’’ Wouters said.
‘‘The act also creates opportunities for innovations in value-based benefit design programs, for example, by incentivizing utilization of highly valued preventive services by either requiring or allowing, depending on the circumstance, the elimination of cost-sharing for covered preventive services,’’ Wouters told BNA. ‘‘It also allows employers to offer employee cost reductions of up to 30 percent of the cost of coverage when they participate in a wellness program and meet certain health-related standards. The act overlays another set of financial incentives for quality improvement put in place under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 for providers who adopt and engage in ‘meaningful use’ of certified electronic health record (EHR) technology. Under ‘meaningful use’ requirements, medical devices that are integrated in the clinical pathways and quality metrics embedded in EHR systems will be even better positioned for market adoption,’’ she said.
Read the full article here.
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