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Getting to Affordability

Craig Brammer: National Affordability Summit – A RHIC’s Perspective

As CEO of The Health Collaborative, a regional health improvement collaborative  (RHIC) in Cincinnati, Craig Brammer believes stakeholders can make health care affordable for all Americans if each group – payers, health plans, providers, policymakers and patients – take responsibility for their share of the cost drivers and itheir role in the solution. 

“Americans are becoming increasingly aware that healthcare costs are increasingly effecting other sectors of the economy,” says Craig. “They effect people’s paychecks, the revenue streams that we have to spend on schools, roads, and other things that are high priorities. Over time we’re beginning to see more and more community leaders focus on smart ways to address affordability keep people healthy in low-cost settings.” He points out that when insurance companies and providers work together to establish new reimbursement models it is very effective in helping doctors focus on care management, keeping people healthy and avoiding unnecessary utilization.  

Mr. Brammer is an advocate of trying new things – even if they fail. “Our community has a lnog history of experimentation and using data to drive improvement in health and healthcare but it always hasn’t gone perfectly.” He recounts that many years ago in Greater Cincinnati large employers brought data together and tried to use it in a way that was more punative. “It really blew up. The Health Collaborative brought different stakeholders together to work through the resulting tension, to build trust so that “ now, we can share data togerther, look at data together and make improvement together”. 

Mr. Brammer implores all stakeholders to work so that no individual, no family, and no business continues to struggle with the financial burden of the current healthcare system. And we want them to be successful. “As a country we have to figure out a way to reduce the unecssary cost that often happens when we don’t take care of ourselves, when we don’t take care of our employees, and when we don’t take care of patients in a way that is proactive and more effectives at keeping people in low-cost settings.”