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Inside National Health Reform (California/Milbank Books on Health and the Public) Hardcover

ISBN-13: 978-0520270190 ISBN-10: 0520270193 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Series: California/Milbank Books on Health and the Public (Book 22)
  • Hardcover: 360 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press; 1 edition (September 12, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0520270193
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520270190
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 6.7 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #622,817 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Superb. . . . Likely to become required reading for anyone who wishes (or claims) to understand health care in the United States.”
(Rick Mayes Health Affairs 2011-12-01)

“Read McDonough’s book.”
(The Incidental Economist 2011-09-14)

“McDonough has done the hard work of breaking a large and historic piece of legislation down into a sober, balanced, thorough, readable, and important book. Recommended.”
(Dick Maxwell Library Journal 2011-10-15)

“Admirably clear . . . provides the best explanation available, which occupies most of his book, of the many individual components of the ten titles of the final act.”
(Jeff Madrick New York Review Of Books 2012-06-21)

“Unique. . . . Offers a perspective available to few others. . . . Accessible, highly informative, and well worth [the reader’s] time.”
(Paul Van de Water, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities World Medical & Health Policy Jrnl 2013-02-15)

From the Inside Flap

“John’s firsthand account of the development, passage and enactment of the Affordable Care Act breathes life and sheds light into the history, process and substance of this landmark legislative achievement. Much like the crafting of the legislation itself, the painstaking work to produce this book will serve generations of people and policymakers, regardless of how the final chapter on this law – its implementation or repeal – is ultimately written.”--Chris Jennings, Former Senior Health Care Advisor for President Bill Clinton

"John McDonough is the ideal person to help us understand the significance and likely impact of health care reform. His knowledge and wisdom enables him to provide thoughtful insights about how our health care system will be improved by this legislation. Anyone interested in understanding our evolving health care system should read this book."--Ron Pollack, Executive Director, Families USA

“John McDonough provides fascinating insight into how the Affordable Care Act – really 10 pieces of legislation rolled into one – made it through the labyrinth of Congress to the president’s desk. And, more importantly, he explains how reform will benefit just about everyone, and put the U.S. health system on the path to high performance with better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency for decades to come.”--Karen Davis, PhD, President, The Commonwealth Fund

“John McDonough’s unique perspective captures the context and progress of health reform from genesis to conclusion. Of course the odyssey of American health reform is not concluded, but this book will do a great service to understanding how we got this far."--Charles N. Kahn III, President and CEO, Federation of American Hospitals






More About the Author

John E. McDonough, DrPH, MPA is a professor of public health practice at the Harvard School of Public Health and director of the new HSPH Center for Public Health Leadership. Most recently, he was the Joan H. Tisch Distinguished Fellow in Public Health at Hunter College in New York City. Between 2008 and 2010, he served as a Senior Advisor on National Health Reform to the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. Between 2003 and 2008, he served as Executive Director of Health Care For All, Massachusetts' leading consumer health advocacy organization. From 1998 through 2003, he was an Associate Professor at the Heller School at Brandeis University. From 1985 to 1997, he served as a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives where he co-chaired the Joint Committee on Health Care.

His articles have appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine, Health Affairs and other journals. He has written three books, Experiencing Politics: A Legislator's Stories of Government and Health Care by the University of California Press and the Milbank Fund in 2000, and Interests, Ideas, and Deregulation: The Fate of Hospital Rate Setting by the University of Michigan Press in 1998. His new book, Inside National Health Reform, will be published in July 2011 by the University of California Press and the Milbank Fund.

He received a doctorate in public health from the School of Public Health at the University of Michigan in 1996 and a master's in public administration from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard in 1990.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 17 customer reviews
If you are just getting to learn about reforms, and want to read about the history, this is perfect.
S. Vasudev
This book is an excellent tool for educating Americans in need of understanding the complexities behind national health reform.
Marla Stein
Despite the extraordinary amount of fascinating detail, this book is eminently approachable and highly readable.
Garen L. Corbett

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Taryn Morrissey on September 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Inside National Health Reform offers an uncommon combination of both the political process and policy substance of the Affordable Care Act. From his unique perspective, John McDonough provides a first-hand, thoughtful account of the politics surrounding health reform, and supplies the context for how our health care system, and its many problems, came to be. Further, McDonough's thorough and balanced description of the provisions included in the ACA go far to educate readers on the substance and potential implications of the new law, written in both an entertaining and accessible way. The book revives much-needed optimism about the future of our health care system at a time when we are too quick to forget the historic accomplish and sweeping benefits the ACA.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Theisen on January 16, 2012
Format: Hardcover
McDonough describes the process of enacting the ACA and its contents. For those who are interested in political processes and how congress works, the first section is a great resource. For instance, the book describes a process known as a 'Byrd Bath' that budgetary reconciliation bills must go through to be eligible for passage. McDonough also writes about the many different interest groups that were either for or against health reform in whole or in part or even for and against it at different times.

McDonough logically splits the second section into 10 chapters, one for each title of the ACA. Each chapter contains a summary of the corresponding title as well as a discussion of the arguments for and against the measures in the corresponding title. To me, this was the most valuable element of the book.

This book is most valuable because there is no other resource out there that is as complete, accessible and thorough as this one. That said, McDonough does have a bias--which he admits to in his preface--in favor of the law. Whether good or bad, the law should stand on its true contents and merits, not the party of the president who signed it. This book goes a long way towards educating the reader about the substantive promise and shortcomings of the ACA.

McDonough makes the case that the ACA is as big and important as Social Security in 1935 or Medicare in 1965, for better or worse. The success or failure of the ACA is yet to be seen as so many of its programs--guaranteed issue for all adults, the individual mandate, quality and safety programs, fraud and abuse measures, insurance subsidies, Medicare rate cuts and much more--have yet to take effect. In the meantime, this book is the best way to understand the contents of the ACA, in McDonough's words, '...whether one regards the law as monumentally good or monumentally bad.' (p. xiii)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Paul Van de Water on September 19, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This weekend I went out and bought a copy of John McDonough's new book. I would have paid less if I had ordered it on-line from Amazon. My wife couldn't believe that I would find a book on national health reform to be enjoyable reading, but it is--and incredibly informative, too, even for someone who was close to the process. It's nice to be able to look back at what happened and see all the individual events in the larger context. McDonough also provides accessible summaries of each of the major portions of the health reform law.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Charles Joffe-Halpern on July 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is a thrilling and thorough insiders account of the passage of the Affordable Care Act. I don't know of anyone in the country who understands the integration of health policy and politics better than John McDonough, who served as the Senior Advisor on National Health Reform to the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Edication, Labor and Pensions. "Inside National Health Reform" should be required reading for anyone in the health policy field, but this is also a very exciting book for anyone!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Marla Stein on August 26, 2011
Format: Hardcover
As a health care consumer, I can relate to Americans being overwhelmed by the changes and improvements the passing of National Health Reform has had and will continue to have on health care. In Inside National Health Reform, John E. McDonough gives an insightful and detailed history of the passage of the country's universal health care law through interviews, research and his own experiences as an expert in the field. This book is an excellent tool for educating Americans in need of understanding the complexities behind national health reform.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mary Ann Hart on October 31, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is by far the best book I have read on national health reform. The framework that is presented begins with a history of the (mostly) unsuccessful attempts at health reform over the last 100 years in the US; describes the "window of opportunity" that gave rise to the current effort; outlines in the most cogent manner, an explanation of the law by title; and finally explains the challenges ahead to full implementation. What sets this book apart from others is John McDonough's eyewitness account of politics and history in the making, in an engaging writing style that makes for a compelling and entertaining read. I teach graduate students in health policy. This book has filled in gaps in knowledge I have had, not only in relation to the lesser known details of the new law, but in the fascinating behind-the-scenes politics of its development. I couldn't put it down! "Inside Health Reform" makes the landmark law come alive.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Garen L. Corbett on August 31, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The author takes us on a deep dive into the passage of health reform in our country. Despite the extraordinary amount of fascinating detail, this book is eminently approachable and highly readable. John McDonough provides thoughtful wisdom and optimism for this herculean accomplishment and the impacts it will have for all of us over time. This is all the more refreshing at a time when pundits are paid per sound bite, partisans dominate the airwaves, and negativity overwhelms most optimists, never mind those of us who are idealists. Anyone interested in understanding our evolving health care system- which effects us all, will find much value from this book. Those of you interested in public policy and politics will also find tremendous value in this book. Highly recommended.

Inside National Health Reform (California/Milbank Books on Health and the Public)
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