Governor Patrick Seeks Immediate and Long Term Relief on Rising Health Care Costs

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Governor Patrick says he hopes to file a bill by this summer that would bring down health care costs and help the state sustain its landmark health coverage law. He is asking health insurers and providers to meet with him this week about ways to hold down premiums. The Governor says individuals, businesses and the state need relief.

We have to get at cost containment because these kind of premium increases and the unevenness in the way that some providers are compensated for the same services have to be addressed to insure the success of this grand experiment.

The Governor says the state will seek more authority to adjust Medicare payments and consider reimbursing physicians based on the quality of care they provide rather than how much care they deliver. Patrick called a meeting today of top cabinet members in response to a Boston Globe series on Partners HealthCare. He said the administration is looking at systemic changes, not the details of specific networks or contracts. Governor Patrick has asked the Department of Health and Human Services for a report on state payments to hospitals, community health centers and health insurers.

Martha Bebinger

This program aired on January 5, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.