This year was one to be proud of in many ways, but it was not without its challenges.
Our state’s health insurance exchange saw record-breaking enrollment, lawmakers supported our state’s mental health infrastructure with major investments, and WSHA members came together to make substantial improvements in quality and safety. Our hospitals and health systems worked together to ensure our communities got the right care, at the right place, at the right time. They did this even in the face of tragedy, and they did it with skill and compassion.
However, in Congress, the Affordable Care Act faced consistent challenges, with many lawmakers seeking to repeal it. Much of the ACA remains intact, though the repeal of the mandate requiring individuals to obtain insurance coverage has been eliminated, putting at risk access to affordable health coverage for our residents. Now, the focus in D.C. turns to other critical issues, such as funding the Children’s Health Insurance Program, which supplies health coverage to tens of thousands of our state’s most vulnerable children.
Your support has been instrumental this year. You have played an integral role in these achievements and in rising to these challenges. I’m looking forward to a strong year for health care in 2018. Though more challenges will certainly arise, there will be many more successes, new and innovative programs that improve life for our communities, and moments of collaboration that will serve as inspiration. They will remind us why we do what we do: Because we believe everyone in our state should have access to high quality care, and we believe that incredible things are possible when we work together.
Thank you for a great first year as your chief executive. I look forward to continuing this important work with you.
WSHA President & CEO