KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations.

Obama Touts Health Care In Government Technology Push

President Obama says government should do what his administration did with the new healthcare.gov and health insurance application -- make better use of technology to make government more efficient.

Los Angeles Times: Obama Urges Cabinet To Use Technology To Make Government Smarter
President Obama has told his staff to use all the technology at their disposal to make the federal government "smarter, quicker and more responsive" in his second term. ... Online shopping sites help users fill in some of their information so the consumer doesn't have to do so every time, Obama said. Government forms on the Web should do the same, he said. In addition, people applying for federal benefits should be able to track the status of their applications in real time, just as they can follow delivery of a package to their doorstep, he said. The Obama administration recently started HealthCare.gov, which orients consumers on how to use the Web-based exchanges that will sell insurance and allows side-by-side comparisons of plans. Obama noted that when the prototype of the insurance application came in at 21 pages, his team rejected it. "It's now three pages long," he said. If the innovations seem incremental, that's partly because Obama is resorting to changes he can make unilaterally, without the help of Congress (Parsons, 7/8).

And CNBC talks with Obama's chief technology officer about the efforts --

The New York Times/CNBC: 10 Questions For Obama’s Chief Technology Officer (Video)
Todd Park, a former Silicon Valley entrepreneur, serves as President Obama’s chief technology officer. His role has taken on heightened importance after several recent developments, including the implementation of the new health care law, efforts to reduce the backlog in Department of Veterans Affairs claims processing, and privacy issues raised by disclosures about data collection by the National Security Agency. Mr. Park spoke with John Harwood of The Times and CNBC at the White House as Mr. Obama publicly challenged his administration to improve the government’s innovation and efficiency in his second term (Harwood, 7/8).

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