July 19, 2013 OHA Director's messages on the web
To: All OHA employees
From: Bruce Goldberg, M.D., Director

What 2014 will mean for Oregon

"The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark."
~Michelangelo Buonarroti

This morning, the Oregon Health Authority hosted a webinar presentation about the 2013-2015 health services budget. Thank you to everyone who tuned in. If you missed it, you can view the webinar or download the presentation.

We are entering a new era in Oregon. Imagine what it will be like when 95% of the state has health care coverage though their employer, Cover Oregon or the Oregon Health Plan.

In 1994, about 120,000 people gained health care coverage through OHP. I remember that year and how it affected my patients. I was a family care doctor and the change was dramatic. I went from scrambling to find treatments or medications from providers willing to help to simply being able to order the necessary test and write the prescription, knowing it would be covered.

Today, we have a much more sustainable system thanks to the work of our innovative coordinated care organizations. The projected 240,000 new OHP members over three years will be served in their local communities by CCOs who are doing cutting-edge work that will improve care and lower costs.

It is exciting to envision the difference having physical, mental and dental care coverage will mean to the 550,000 adults who are without it today. From working people who are barely scraping by, to people who are living on city streets at the edge of our society. They all will have access to no cost or low-cost health care coverage.

This change is profound. This change is important. I’m proud of everyone at OHA who is working to make it happen.

There will be much more information to come about 2014. You can learn more today at www.health.oregon.gov.

OHA on the web