AAHC Urges Continued Commitment to Comprehensive Health Policy

Jun 28, 2012, 11:45 ET from Association of Academic Health Centers

Workforce Must Remain a Priority in Addressing Challenges Facing our Healthcare System

WASHINGTON, June 28, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In the wake of today's historic Supreme Court decision, the Association of Academic Health Centers (AAHC) urges Congress and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to continue moving towards a health reform policy that transforms the American healthcare system into one which provides accessible and high-quality care at affordable rates. 

As centers of innovation, the nation's academic health centers are leaders in pioneering more efficient means of caring for patients while maintaining the highest quality of care.  To continue advancing the nation's health and well-being, academic health centers, along with other healthcare institutions, recognize that the status quo must change and that substantive changes in healthcare delivery are already underway. 

With the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act officially settled, AAHC calls upon the Administration and Congress to recognize the work payors and providers are already engaging in, making significant changes to the delivery of and payment for health care services.   Academic health centers, representing the full range of health professions and serving as the centers for world-class research and health care, will remain at the forefront of this movement and serve as a laboratory for developing innovative strategies for improving the health care system.

"Transformation to a health care system that is both effective and efficient requires the support of informed and judicious policy," said to Dr. Steven A. Wartman, AAHC President and CEO, adding "perhaps most fundamentally, the nation remains in need of a federal-level, comprehensive and coordinated approach to health workforce policy."  According to Dr. Wartman, our health workforce is already strained by powerful economic and demographic forces.  "If we do not significantly enhance the education and training of our health workforce, we will not have the appropriate mix and geographic distribution of health professionals to meet the increased demand for healthcare services that is inevitable given the changing demography of the United States and the continued advances of science and technology, along with the mandate of expanded access to coverage, especially in already underserved urban and rural communities."

AAHC urges Congress, as a necessary step in responsive and responsible healthcare reform, to quickly move to appropriate $3 million to fund the National Health Care Workforce Commission; and, to move forward with implementation regulations that support a rapidly transforming healthcare system and an aging population with growing health care needs.

SOURCE Association of Academic Health Centers