Health groups vow to cut costs--but how?

June 19, 2009

The AMA and groups representing hospitals, health insurers, pharmaceutical companies, device makers, and labor groups vowed to do their part to save the country as much as $2 trillion by slowing healthcare expense growth by 1.5 percent over the next decade.

In a May 11 letter to President Obama, the American Medical Association and groups representing hospitals, health insurers, pharmaceutical companies, device makers, and labor groups vowed to do their part to save the country as much as $2 trillion by slowing healthcare expense growth by 1.5 percent over the next decade.

To cut costs, the groups proposed simplifying administration, reducing care overuse and underuse through provider incentives, and encouraging coordinated care and more evidence-based treatments.

The two-page letter doesn't elaborate on how these goals will be accomplished, but in an interview with Medical Economics, J. James Rohack, MD, president-elect of the AMA, says more specific measures from his organization will be released soon, including provisions for malpractice liability protection.