US Health Care Reform and Transplantation, Part II: impact on the public sector and novel health care delivery systems

D A Axelrod, D Millman, M M Abecassis
American Journal of Transplantation 2010, 10 (10): 2203-7
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act passed in 2010 will result in dramatic expansion of publically funded health insurance coverage for low-income individuals. It is estimated that of the 32 million newly insured, 16 million will obtain coverage through expansion of the Medicaid Program, and the remaining 16 million will purchase coverage through their employer or newly legislated insurance exchanges. While the Act contains numerous provisions to improve access to private insurance as discussed in Part I of this analysis, public sector coverage will significantly be affected. The cost of health care reform will be borne disproportionately by Medicare, which faces nearly $500 billion in cuts to be identified by a new independent board. Transplant centers should be concerned about the impact of the reform on the financial aspects of transplantation. In addition, this legislation also utilizes the Medicare Program to drive reform of the health care delivery system, by encouraging the development of integrated Accountable Care Organizations, experimentation with new 'models' of healthcare delivery, and expanded support for Comparative Effectiveness Research. Transplant providers, including transplant centers and physicians/surgeons need to lead this movement, drawing on our experience providing comprehensive multidisciplinary care under global budgets with publically reported outcomes.

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