23 Massachusetts hospital CEOs, public officials named to state commission to study healthcare price variation

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A number of Massachusetts hospital executives and public officials will serve on a special commission to study various factors contributing to price variation in physician, hospital, diagnostic testing and ancillary services.

The 23-member group, announced Tuesday by Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R), was established under a deal reached in May to avoid a ballot question concerning healthcare pricing. The ballot question would have reduced health insurance payments to the state's largest hospital network, Boston-based Partners HealthCare, and given some of that money to lower-paid competitors, reports The Boston Globe. Service Employees International Union, Local 1199, pulled the ballot question after state lawmakers agreed to a compromise that included establishing the special commission.

The commission will be co-led by Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Health Care Financing Sen. James Welch (D) and House Chair of the Joint Committee on Health Care Financing Rep. Jeffrey Sanchez (D).

Other members of the Massachusetts commission are:

  • Attorney General Maura Healey
  • Secretary of Administration and Finance Kristen Lepore
  • Secretary of Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders
  • Group Insurance Commission Executive Director Roberta Herman, MD
  • Stuart Altman, PhD, Brandeis University
  • Howard Grant, MD, president and CEO of Lahey Hospital & Medical Center (Burlington)
  • Rep. Ron Mariano
  • Rick Lord, Associated Industries of Massachusetts
  • Deb Devaux, COO of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Massachusetts
  • Lora Pellegrini, president and CEO of the Massachusetts Association of Health Plans
  • Steven Walsh, president and CEO of the Massachusetts Council of Community Hospitals
  • Lynn Nicholas, president and CEO of the Massachusetts Hospital Association
  • John Fernandez, chair of the Conference of Boston Teaching Hospitals
  • Steve Carey, vice president of human resources at Polar Beverages
  • Gregory DeConciliis, administrator of Boston Out-Patient Surgical Suites
  • Connie Englert, principal and managing director of TrueNorth Transit Group
  • Richard Frank, PhD, Margaret T. Morris Professor of Health Economics in the Harvard Medical School Department of Health Care Policy
  • Mark Goldstein, president and CEO of Anna Jacques Hospital (Newburyport)
  • Tyrék D. Lee Sr., executive vice president of 1199SEIU
  • David Torchiana, MD, president and CEO of Partners Healthcare
  • Kate Walsh, president and CEO of Boston Medical Center

The commission is expected to recommend steps to reduce price variations and issue a report in the next six months, according to The Boston Globe.




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