Why Join a Health Benefits Focused Coalition?
The United States spends more on healthcare than any other nation and the rate of healthcare cost increase continues to dramatically outpace general inflation, yet the quality of U.S. healthcare is much less. To put this into perspective, in 2000 healthcare accounted for 13.4 percent ($10,252.3 billion) of the United States’ Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and has rapidly grown to 17.9 percent ($19,485.4 billion) share of the GDP in 2017. With 56.0 percent of the population covered by employer-sponsor health care plans, the continuing rise of healthcare costs has the potential to create an economic disaster.
One in four hospital patients experience a preventable hospital acquired mishap, in which the patient is responsible for paying and studies have estimated that between 25% and 50% of current spending is waste (e.g. overuse, inappropriate use, treatment of complications due to medical errors, costs of administration). As the purchasers of nearly half of the nation’s healthcare, employers have the ability to hold the system more accountable for improving quality and controlling utilization and cost – but only when they work collectively to influence care.
Benefits of Membership
By joining EAM, employers and organizations are showing that they recognize the need for healthcare system reform and are willing to use their collective market power to make a difference. Also, it demonstrates to your members and/or employees that the lowering of health care costs and access to quality patient care are top priorities for your business or organization.
EAM will make a difference in the value of your organization’s health benefits. Additional benefits of membership include:
• Free registration for educational programs, webinars, and professional round-tables on health benefits management topics, along with discounts on annual EAM events.
• Participation opportunities at annual EAM Health Purchaser Forums, member subcommittees and advocacy work at the state and federal levels.
• Networking with other national and regional public/private health care purchasers.
• Exposure to national industry leaders in health benefits, health care and health policy.
• Access to information, programs and publications of other national business and health organizations that EAM works with, such as the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions.
• Ability to network with other employers in the state and learn from one another by attending EAM sponsored events, meetings and professional roundtable discussions.
• Ability to participate in the EAM healthcare work group that tracks national and state innovations and policies in healthcare and health benefits. The healthcare work group also guides EAM initiatives.
EAM’s Officers and Board of Directors set the coalition’s agenda with input from work groups that are open to all members. Examples of EAM initiatives and accomplishments include:
• The state’s leader for transparency on hospital quality and safety by serving as the “regional leader” for The Leapfrog Group, a national initiative encouraging hospitals to voluntarily disclose data on safety practices and outcomes.
• During National Patient Safety Awareness Week in March, EAM issues its annual Hospital Patient Safety Awards, recognizing hospitals in Michigan consistently performing high marks and improvements in patient safety and quality of care. Hospitals can achieve two different awards, the Excellence Award and the Improvement Award.
• Launched in 2018, the Maternity Care Project was created to reduce the rate of unnecessary C-sections in the state, decrease infant mortality and reduce elective early deliveries. Two awards are also part of the project:
- On Mother’s Day, the EAM announces the annual Hospital Maternity Care Awards, given to hospitals throughout Michigan that have demonstrated excellence and improvement in maternity care and delivery outcomes.
- In November, EAM announces the recipients of the Maternity Care Hero award. Nominations are submitted by the public and three heroes are recognized for his or her dedication to maternity care and patient safety.
• Annual Health Purchaser Forum brings expert speakers from across the nation to speak on the latest trends and topics concerning the health benefit industry. Past forums focused on mental health, costs of prescription and specialty drugs and health benefit contract innovations.
• The EAM is currently hosting a series of Oncology Symposiums, designed to get key stakeholder input on issues related to high quality, high value, cost effective cancer care. The group is comprised of clinical physicians, surgeons, radiologists, associations, insurance providers, purchasers and consumers.
• The EAM Health Staff Group is open to all members and meets on a monthly basis for networking, education seminars pertaining to health benefits and discussion on current legislative happenings. The group advises EAM’s board on health care policies and initiatives.
• Advocacy for state policies that contribute to the lowering of health care costs. Examples are:
- Air Ambulance: EAM collaborated with other coalitions in the state and was successful in the passing of regulation that helps lessen the exuberant costs of air ambulance for patients and employers.
- Surprise Billing: Currently, EAM is working at both the state and federal levels to curb the practice of balance billing by out-of-network physicians and specialists who practice in a patients in-network hospital.
If you and/or company is interested in becoming a member of the EAM, please fill out the form below and our staff will contact you in a timely fashion. Thank you!