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Mental Health Awareness Month

Happy Spring! As we’re well into the second quarter of 2019, I want to express my thanks as Interim President on behalf of all of us at SVHP for the work that all of our members and partners do, both visibly and behind the scenes, to improve healthcare experiences and outcomes for patients. 

May is Mental Health Awareness month. The issues are complex. But there is so much that is in our control. As I’ve rounded over the last months, hearing stories in our network, and experiencing the very hectic day of our colleagues, I’m firmly convinced that in the long run, it’s not just our technical prowess, the latest technology, analytics capabilities, cash flow, or the score card results we see, that will improve the health of our population. 

Here’s what will:

1. Walking the talk. Science is clear that we need to exercise regularly, eat food that is mostly plant based, have a social life and interests outside of work, learn to say “no” and learn healthy ways to cope with stress, if we are to flourish. Let’s set the example for our friends, families and patients!

2. Building a better workplace. We all have opportunities each day to contribute to a culture that truly makes our work better — creating environments that are respectful, supportive, flexible and growth-oriented, while expecting excellence and accountability. 

Together, I believe we can have incredible impact for the good of the population, and for ourselves, if each day we choose to take the next step on our own “health roadmaps,” honestly examine our workplaces, and ensure they don’t contribute to mental health issues (depression, stress, shame, discouragement, anger) — but instead make it possible for every staff member to flourish. 

Our team is committed to supporting both causes, whether you’re an employer or a provider. 

HHS Secretary Azar Wants Employers to Help Control Health Care Costs

Secretary Azar discusses the importance of supporting an initiative to decrease “backdoor rebates” used by drug companies. He states that employers can enhance quality of care by avoiding these rebates and contracting directly with hospitals. Increased competition in the healthcare market would ultimately reduce unnecessary costs at the patient level.

 “We need new levels of competition in health care so that market forces can increase quality and drive down costs, just like they do throughout the rest of our economy. We need transparency around price and quality so that individual consumers and, in some cases, third-party payers can drive that transformation.”

                                                                                         Secretary Azar

Read the full article here.