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President's Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry

Quality Commission Begins Work,
Creates Four Subcommittees

Contact: Edward (Chip) Malin
(202) 205-3333

The President's Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry held its first meeting May 13 in Washington DC and agreed to establish four standing Subcommittees to begin work on the issues before the Commission.

The Commission was created by President Clinton to "advise the President on changes occurring in the health care system and recommend such measures as may be necessary to promote and assure health care quality and value, and protect consumers and workers in the health care system." The Commission is Co-Chaired by Alexis M. Herman, Secretary of Labor, and Donna E. Shalala, Secretary of Health and Human Services.

At its first meeting, the President sent a letter to Commission members asking them to "develop a Consumer Bill of Rights to be completed no later than this fall." Such recommendations "will help in developing a long-overdue national consensus on this critical issue," the President added.

The Commission agreed to establish subcommittees on: Consumers Rights, Protections, and Responsibilities; Performance Measurement and Quality Oversight; Quality Improvement Environment; and Roles and Responsibilities of Public and Private Purchasers and Quality Oversight Organizations.

Secretaries Herman and Shalala also announced the appointment of the Chairs and Co-Chairs of the Subcommittee. They are as follows:

  • Subcommittee on Consumer Rights, Protections, and Responsibilities will be chaired by Peter W. Thomas, a principal in the law firm of Powers, Pylers, Sutter & Verville, P.C.
  • Subcommittee on Performance Measurement and Quality Oversight will be chaired by Sheila Leatherman, Executive Vice President of the United Health Care Corporation.
  • Subcommittee on Quality Improvement Environment will be chaired by Mary Wakefield, Director and Professor of the Center for Health Policy at George Mason University.
  • Subcommittee on Roles and Responsibilities of Public and Private Purchasers and Quality Oversight Organizations will be Co-Chaired by Sandra Hernandez, Director of Health for the City and County of San Francisco and Gail Warden, President and CEO of the Henry Ford Health Systems.

"I am pleased that this Commission has gotten off to such a quick and productive start," said Secretary Shalala. "We are determined to provide the President and the Nation with sound and thoughtful advice on these critical matters."

"I look forward to working with the members of this Commission and the Chairs and Co-Chairs of these Subcommittees to develop a consensus on matters of critical concern to the American consumer," Secretary Herman added.

The Commission's next meeting is scheduled for June 25-26 in Washington DC.

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Last Revised: Friday, June 19, 1998

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