Monday, September 22nd, 2014

The Obameter

Tracking Obama's Campaign Promises

Require health care providers to report preventable medical errors

"Require providers to report preventable medical errors, and support hospital and physician practice improvement to prevent future errors."

Establish an independent health institute to provide accurate and objective information

"Establish an independent institute to guide reviews and research on comparative effectiveness to provide accurate and objective information."

Hold hospitals and health plans accountable for disparities in care

"Require hospitals and health plans to collect, analyze and report health care quality for disparity populations and holding them accountable for any differences found. … Diversify the workforce to ensure culturally effective care."

Implement and fund proven health intervention programs

Implement and fund "evidence-based interventions, such as patient navigator programs." A patient navigator is someone specifically designated to guide patients and their families through the complexities of the health care system.

Strengthen antitrust laws to prevent overcharging for malpractice insurance

"Strengthen antitrust laws to prevent insurers from overcharging physicians for their malpractice insurance."

In non-competitive markets, force insurers to pay out a reasonable share of their premiums for patient care

In markets where the insurance business is not competitive, "force insurers to pay out a reasonable share of their premiums for patient care instead of keeping exorbitant amounts for profits and administration."

Eliminate the higher subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans

"Eliminate the excessive subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans and pay them the same amount it would cost to treat the same patients under regular Medicare."

Allow imported prescription drugs

"Allow Americans to buy their medicines from other developed countries if the drugs are safe and prices are lower outside the U.S."

Prevent drug companies from blocking generic drugs

"Prevent drug companies from blocking generic drugs from consumers."

Allow Medicare to negotiate for cheaper drug prices

"Allow Medicare to negotiate for cheaper drug prices."

Reimburse employer health plans for a portion of catastrophic costs

"Reimburse employer health plans for a portion of the catastrophic costs they incur above a threshold if they guarantee such savings are used to reduce the cost of workers' premiums."

Work with schools to create more healthful environments for children

"Work with schools to create more healthful environments for children, including assistance with contract policy development for local vendors, grant support for school-based health screening programs and clinical services, increased financial support for physical education, and educational programs for students."

Expand funding to train primary care providers and public health practitioners

"Expand funding—including loan repayment, adequate reimbursement, grants for training curricula, and infrastructure support to improve working conditions— to ensure a strong workforce that will champion prevention and public health activities."

Increase funding to expand community based prevention programs

"Increase funding to expand community based preventive interventions to help Americans make better choices to improve their health."

Improve recruitment of public health workers

Government "at all levels should lead the effort to develop a national and regional strategy for public health … government must invest in workforce recruitment."

Modernize public health buildings

Government "must invest in ... modernizing our physical structures, particularly our public health laboratories."

Mandate insurance coverage of autism treatment

"Will mandate insurance coverage of autism treatment and will also continue to work with parents, physicians, providers, researchers, and schools to create opportunities and effective solutions for people with ASD (autism spectrum disorders)."

Appoint federal-level coordinator to oversee all federal autism efforts

"They will appoint a Federal ASD Coordinator to oversee federal ASD research and federal efforts to improve awareness of ASD and improve the training of medical professionals to identify and treat ASD. By establishing one top-level point person to coordinate ASD efforts in the White House, they will ensure that ASD receives the recognition and priority it deserves in the federal government. The Federal ASD Coordinator will also be tasked with eliminating bureaucratic obstacles that may be delaying implementation of important ASD measures and ensuring that all federal ASD dollars are being spent in a manner that prioritizes results. The Coordinator will work with state task forces on ASD to ensure effective communication and collaboration among federal, state, and local agencies."

Fully fund the Combating Autism Act and Federal Autism Research Initiatives

"President Obama will fully fund the Combating Autism Act, which provides nearly $1 billion in autism-related funding over 5 years, and work with Congress, parents and ASD experts to determine how to further improve federal and state programs."

Provide $50 billion by 2013 for the global fight against HIV/AIDS

"Pledged to provide at least $50 billion by 2013 for the global fight against HIV/AIDS, including our fair share of the Global Fund, in order to at least double the number of HIV-positive people on treatment and continue to provide treatments to one-third of all those who desperately need them. This funding will allow the U.S. to meet its commitments that have been flat-funded by the Bush Administration, which includes expanding existing programs to help the millions of children orphaned and made vulnerable by AIDS, increasing the number of health care workers by at least one million, preventing violence against women and girls, and improving health care systems so that U.S. assistance can be fully and effectively utilized."