HLC Newsletter

Healthcare Leaders Say Executive Order on Medicare Can Have Significant Effect on Patient Care, Health System Improvements

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The executive order being signed today by President Trump can open the door to important and much-needed changes in the Medicare program, including improving the health of Americans affected by factors beyond clinical care and improving access to care through expanded telehealth and improvements to healthcare workforce rules, the president of the Healthcare Leadership Council (HLC) said today.

Mary R. Grealy said HLC, a coalition of leaders from companies in all health sectors, is supportive of the direction of the executive order and looks forward to the details of how it will be implemented.  She said the order has the potential to optimize the potential of healthcare payment and delivery systems to elevate care for Medicare beneficiaries with the greatest needs.

“We’re pleased that the executive order is encouraging coverage of supplemental benefits beyond clinical care.  Health is dictated to such a great degree by factors beyond the clinic or the hospital, such as access to transportation and nutrition, and Medicare Advantage can play a greater role in addressing those social determinants,” she said.  “And expanded access to telehealth and improving regulations to enable non-physician health professionals to practice to the full extent of their licenses will improve access to care for those populations that are currently underserved.”

Ms. Grealy said other promising aspects of the executive order include expanding access to Medicare Advantage plans in rural areas, efforts to link reimbursement to time spent with patients, and improving the speed with which Medicare covers innovative healthcare technologies.

“This executive order can go a long way toward better aligning federal health programs with the innovative improvements taking place in the private sector,” Ms. Grealy said.