Health Care Reform Commission Moves Forward

Vermont’s Health Care Reform Commission (HCRC) moved our state one step closer to comprehensive system reform yesterday.  Members voted unanimously in support of a consulting team, lead by Harvard Professor, Dr. William Hsaio, to move state health care reform efforts to the next level.  His team, which includes Jonathon Gruber of MIT and Steve Kappel of Vermont, will spend the next six months crafting three possible health care design options for the state, as dictated by Act 128 (S.88) – which passed the legislature in May.  Although the Joint Fiscal Committee has the final vote on the matter, they are expected to concur with the HCRC’s recommendation today.
Although the proposal encourages creativity and vision, each reform option must incorporate the principles of universal access and affordability.  The legislature will consider all three plans, which must include a single payer system and a public option, for implementation when lawmakers reconvene in January.  Dr. Hsaio is world-renowned for his expertise in healthcare economics and financing. He has assisted in the development of over 16 health care systems across the globe, including the one employed by the Taiwanese.
As the process moves forward, we will be working to ensure that the process is as transparent as possible and that there is plenty of opportunity for public input.