Healthcare Transformation Project participants talk updates and the ACA

To support HTP, HIMSS has committed over $13.5 million in funding projects to date, impacting more than 580,000 lives.
By Frank Irving
04:59 PM
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Healthcare Transformation Project (HTP) participants gathered Monday at HIMSS14 to work through their plans toward making improvements in health and healthcare in their respective communities.

Steve Lieber, president and CEO of HIMSS, described HTP as "part of a strategic focus we have in engaging senior executives – not just IT executives – in this very important journey that we're all taking in bringing about a better American healthcare system."

At the heart of HTP efforts are Commitments to Action, which translate participants' goals into meaningful and measurable results. 

To support HTP, HIMSS has committed over $13.5 million in funding projects to date, impacting more than 580,000 lives. 

Among those detailing their projects were:

  • KentuckyCare and ARcare, who will achieve Stage 7 of the HIMSS Analytics Ambulatory EMR Adoption Model
  • Nove Medical Group, who will improve local healthcare by implementing a wellness portal among its employees
  • Centura Health, who will implement CPOE in all 15 of its hospitals

After an update on the program, the participants were treated to a conversation about the Affordable Care Act between Nancy-Ann DeParle, former White House deputy chief of staff for policy during President Barack Obama's first term, and Haley Barbour, former governor of Mississippi, moderated by Lieber.

She divulged that Obama favored a healthcare reform approach in which states would have a waiver to devise their own version of Medicaid expansion. However, she said, that plan was scuttled after the Congressional Budget Office scored the proposal as being $60 billion more expensive than alternative plans. "They didn't think the marketplace could work in that way," said DeParle.

Barbour noted that a current Republican proposal would allow states to take Medicaid funding and turn it into an insurance plan for designated beneficiaries. 

While DeParle called on attendees to "help us figure out how government and insurers and hospitals and other providers can work together to take advantage of all these new technologies that save money and improve quality," Barbour got laughs from the audience by suggesting that the federal government needs a new agency: The Department of Implementation.