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Seven Health, Political Leaders Respond to Berwick's Nomination to Lead CMS

Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, April 20, 2010

Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT)
Chairman
Senate Finance Committee

"Dr. Berwick is an experienced health policy expert and researcher whose career has focused on innovative and effective ways to improve healthcare quality. Implementing innovative ideas that work and boosting healthcare quality will be critical goals for the next administrator of CMS, particularly in our fight to deliver better healthcare outcomes and lower costs for patients across the country.

"Improving healthcare quality was a major part of the landmark health reform bill passed this year and the CMS administrator will play a crucial role implementing that law. I look forward to an expeditious review of Dr. Berwick's nomination in the Finance Committee."


Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI)
Chairman
House Ways and Means Committee

"Dr. Berwick has been a visionary leader in the field of healthcare delivery improvement, working to make our health system more efficient and patient centered. I appreciated his insight in developing legislation to accelerate the translation of cutting edge medical research and healthcare delivery best practices into bedside care, a form of which was included in the new healthcare reform law. The committee looks forward to working with him in a new role as head of CMS."
Rep. Pete Stark (D-CA)
Chairman
House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee

"I welcome Dr. Don Berwick's nomination as CMS administrator. Dr. Berwick has worked at the national level for years to strengthen the quality of healthcare in America. As head of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, he has brought together providers and policymakers to advance ideas that improve the delivery of healthcare.

"I look forward to continuing to work with Dr. Berwick in his new role, and I urge the Senate to act quickly to confirm him. His leadership and expertise are needed now as the agency implements critical Medicare reforms and other health reform initiatives at CMS."


Susan DeVore
President and CEO
Premier Healthcare Alliance

"Members of the Premier healthcare alliance believe Dr. Berwick is a strong choice to lead the central healthcare agency charged with implementing healthcare reform over the next decade. While with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Dr. Berwick earned respect and admiration from all sectors of healthcare for his ability to understand what drives errors and inefficiencies, challenge the status quo and overcome barriers to achieve continuous quality improvements.

"With this background, we are confident Dr. Berwick understands first hand how difficult it will be to implement reforms of such significant scale and magnitude. More importantly, we believe he has the vision and experience to overcome the challenges ahead to drive improvements in pragmatic, effective ways.

"We look forward to working with Dr. Berwick in his new role, and in continuing our efforts to simultaneously improve healthcare quality, eliminate costs, reduce harm, and increase satisfaction. We also look forward to working with Dr. Berwick and CMS to drive toward greater accountability in healthcare so that we reward the quality of patient outcomes rather than the quantity of services provided."


Janice Simmons is a senior editor and Washington, DC, correspondent for HealthLeaders Media Online. She can be reached at jsimmons@healthleadersmedia.com.

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