When it comes to health reform:
- Fixing healthcare problems starts with understanding them.
- We get you to think rather than tell you what to think.
- Diversity in views and approaches is good as most of us want the same thing: More effective ways to keep people healthy and take care of them when they are not.
For those interested in learning more, here’s a longer version of why Health Reform Now exists:
The American healthcare system is the largest economic and social issue of our time and in dire need of change. Whether you are sick or not it’s affecting your life as you read the words on this page.
If you are sick and insured, you have access to the best clinicians and technology in the world. If you’re not, you likely find yourself with your nose pressed up against the window glass looking in on a system beyond your reach.
If you never set foot in a doctor’s office or hospital the system still has a profound effect on your life. It impacts what you are paid and how much you get to keep after taxes and out-of-pocket expenses.
We spend more per citizen on health services than any country on the planet, yet our results put us at the bottom of most rankings for quality and outcomes.
Health Reform Now is for anyone who wants to find or amplify their voice in the health reform debate to preserve what you believe is right and change what you think is wrong with the health system today.
This site does not tell you what to think. It does not directly take positions on any health reform proposal. Instead, it provides information and insights to help you formulate and confirm your own views for health reform in keeping with your beliefs, values and social priorities.
And so, why does this approach and your voice matter?
Each day the media bludgeons us with reports on the problems with the health system followed by proponents and pundits putting forward “soundbites” for change that fit neatly into two-minute news segments.
Listen carefully and you will begin to understand the problem. You see, every day in America nine billion dollars change hands in healthcare.[i] The reform debate is less about identifying and addressing underlying issues to create sustainable change leading to better access and value and more about the politics of how to collect and spend this money within the existing systems which are failing to produce the outcomes desired by most Americans.
Most proposals for change are spin-controlled conversations put forth by politicians and self-interest groups that want to influence how $3.5 trillion is spent this year while diverting billions more in future taxes that ultimately come from you and your employer[ii].
And while the “pageantry” of the debate goes on, costs go up while outcomes get worse.
We deserve better.
We have an unprecedented opportunity to make healthcare better for all by broadening the conversation to include better information and clarity on the underlying issues. To create a system that empowers all citizens to be healthier while providing better ways to care for them when they are not. To harness the power of the most highly trained health workforce on the planet by reimagining and reinvesting in what we are capable of creating.
Making this happen starts with you.
IMPORTANT: Health Reform Now focuses on failing systems not failing people. The U.S. Health system is blessed to have highly trained and dedicated clinicians and other professionals who are often trapped by financial and regulatory policies and processes that constrain their abilities to innovate.
“Give me a lever long enough, and a place to stand, and I can move the earth.” -Archimedes
About Tom Lawry
In one way or another, I’ve spent my entire career in and around healthcare. It’s such a noble cause that needs our help.
As Director of Worldwide Health for Microsoft I have the privilege of working with clinical and health leaders who are focused on using data and technology to create new models for transforming health systems.
Somewhere along the way I realized that making the current system more efficient is not enough. We need to fundamentally rethink and reengineer the systems we count on to keep us well and take care of us when we are not.
As a former hospital executive, I learned firsthand about how the health system works. Driven by economics that reward illness, I became very good at knowing how to generate revenue taking care of people who were sick…but learned little about systems to keep people well.
As an entrepreneur I spent time in the venture-backed world creating software to better engage patients and consumers with health systems that often don’t actually know what to do with a truly-engaged consumer.
As a citizen, I’m amazed at how the health reform debate is mainly confined to having elected officials argue over how to spend money for a medical-intervention system without taking a broader view of the issues that should be part of the conversation. Like social and environmental determinants, population and public health and other opportunities to make our investments have a much higher return in generating and maintaining better health and well being for all.
There are many complexities to the healthcare delivery system and the economics associated with it. But underneath these complexities are “trends and truths” that any American that wants to have a say in the reform debate can and should understand.
And so, Health Reform Now is dedicated to supporting those choosing to step up and have their voices heard in the health reform debate.
…May you find value that strengthens your resolve to make things better.
“ipsa scientia potestas est”
(Knowledge Itself is Power)