Commonwealth National Podcast

George Halvorson: Epidemic of Care: A Call for a Better Health Care System (3/3/2007)


George Halvorson, Chairman and CEO, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals

Although the United States spends more on health care than any other country, it still has 50 million uninsured citizens. As many as half of America’s patients receive inadequate care. How can such a fast-growing segment of the economy perform so badly? Halvorson, chairman and CEO of Kaiser Foundation, will present a plan intended to improve the quality of care and patient safety, while correcting inefficiencies in the health care market, using new tools, like the internet, to improve organization and access to information. Halvorson maintains that the system isn't totally broken but needs a radical solution that is uniquely American.

Halvorson became chairman and CEO of Kaiser Foundation in May of 2002, with over 30 years of healthcare management experience. Before working at Kaiser, he was president and CEO of HealthPartners, president of Senior Health Plan, and president of the international HMO Health Accord. He is the author of three books on health care, Epidemic of Care, published in April 2003, Strong Medicine, and How to Cut Your Company's Health Care Cost. Halvorson has served as an advisor to the governments of Great Britain, Jamaica, Uganda, and Russia on issues of health policy and financing. He is a member of the Harvard University Policy Advisory Committee and the Commonwealth Fund Task Force on the Uninsured.

This program was recorded live on March 3, 2007.