I have a better idea, Mr. President

George Pantos Contributor
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At tomorrow’s White House health reform summit, President Obama hopes to re-invigorate the health care debate and prompt Congress to act on the issue this year. He’s invited members of both parties to meet, challenging Republicans and Democrats alike to offer alternative reform ideas.

Here’s one for would-be reformers—why not use technology to empower companies and their employees with the information they need to take control of their health care expenses?

In recent years, data-driven strategies have revolutionized the way companies handle their customer relations and manage their supply chains. It’s high time they did the same for health benefits.

Click here to read George Pantos’ in-depth analysis, which appeared in the Orange County Register.

Businesses generally lack access to—or ignore—data about their health plans, even though health care represents one of their biggest expenses. That’s a mistake.

A technology fueled “Health care Performance Management” strategy can capitalize on the mountains of health data out there and help firms measure and manage their health costs.

For instance, on an aggregate basis, businesses could use HPM data to find out how many times their employees had visited the doctor and correlate it with treatment data to ensure that their employees were following their doctors’ orders. That’s just one way to use technology to save money.

President Obama has leverage the power of technology better than virtually any other public official. Yet his health care plan ignores many of the money-saving technologies we use in other aspects of our lives. That should change.

George J. Pantos, Esq., is Executive Director of the Healthcare Performance Management Institute. He is former Deputy Undersecretary of Commerce as well as former General Counsel to the Self-Insurance Institute of America.