The holidays are a time of celebration. We celebrate the New Year, the lengthening of the days and the joy of being with friends and family.
At the Oregon Health Authority, we have a lot to celebrate this year. As an agency, we have accomplished so much. We observed the one year anniversary of coordinated care for Oregon Health Plan members, and the data shows that coordinated care organizations are already bringing down costs while improving care through prevention and a focus on primary care. We held a highly successful CCO summit, where leaders from throughout our health care system shared innovative approaches to achieve the triple aim of better health, better care and lower costs.
We also celebrate unprecedented investments in Oregon’s community mental health system that will keep children healthy and help adults with mental illness live successfully in the community. In public health, we collaborated with local health departments and other partners to promote lifelong health for all people in Oregon and prevent the leading causes of injury, disease and death – while meeting rigorous standards required for national accreditation in 2014.
And in January, more than 100,000 Oregonians will gain health insurance through the Oregon Health Plan. This is the result of a tremendous effort by OHA and DHS staff, and the results will be life-changing for so many families across our state.
However, these are just the highlights. There are many more accomplishments than I have room to list, and behind each one of them is a cadre of staff who made it happen – which brings me to the most important thing to celebrate: the OHA team.
Everywhere I go in our agency, I find people who are amazing at what they do and who are wholly dedicated to improving the health of Oregonians – from epidemiologists in Public Health and public service representatives in our Medical Assistance Programs to program analysts in Addictions and Mental Health and the nursing staff at the Oregon State Hospital. I see passion and excellence everywhere, and I am so proud to be leading this team.
May you have a safe and marvelous New Year.