For Immediate Release: May 2013
Contact:                   Betsy Stubblefield Loucks, Director, HealthRIght, 401-580-8075

Pressing on for Continued Excellence through the Health Insurance Commissioner

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Providence, RI: HealthRIght congratulates Mr. Chris Koller and wishes him the best for his new role as President of the Milbank Foundation. We are deeply grateful for his outstanding efforts toward improving Rhode Island’s health care system. With skillful expertise, Mr. Koller leveraged the influence of his position to achieve many accomplishments, which include implementing a commercial health insurance rate review process, creating cost control tools, launching the Chronic Care Sustainability Initiative, and developing the initial state applications for the Insurance Exchange planning grants.

HealthRIght also applauds Koller’s contribution to coordinated health planning as co-chair of the Health Care Planning and Accountability Advisory Council (HCPAAC). Under Koller’s leadership, the HCPAAC produced an in-depth analysis of Rhode Island’s hospital beds and primary care practices, which was given to the General Assembly last week.

HealthRIght encourages Governor Chafee to identify someone who will continue Koller’s dedication to properly addressing the challenges of inefficiency, cost, and quality of our health care system. In addition, we urge the Governor to appoint a candidate whose work reflects HealthRIght’s extensive collaboration with a broad range of stakeholders – public officials, insurance payers, health care providers and consumers – In order to create, influence and implement uniquely Rhode Island health policy through these principles:

1. Healthy Lives:  Health care that supports healthier lives.

2. Quality of Care: All Rhode Islanders should receive high quality, timely, accessible and affordable health care.

3. Consumer Choice and Protection: The health care system should be designed to maximize consumer choice, protection and control.

4. Aggregated Payment and Pooled Risk: All public and private health care dollars should be consolidated into an aggregated public or not-for-profit purchaser that pools risk statewide.

5. Cost Containment: Implementinga coordinated health planning process to achieve more equitable and efficient allocation of health care resources in the public interest.

6. Diversity of Stakeholders: Involving multiple and diverse stakeholders to design a high quality health care system for everyone.

We are looking forward to the selection process for finding a new Health Insurance Commissioner and hope he or she will be just what our state needs – someone committed to bringing dedication, innovation and excellence to improving the affordability and effectiveness of Rhode Island’s health care system.

HealthRIght  is a statewide coalition that convenes key stakeholders to organize for the passage and implementation of comprehensive health care reform that will control costs, improve quality of care and health outcomes, and expand health coverage to all Rhode Islanders.