Wars and other national crises force society to act differently for awhile. But in doing so, they highlight organizational actions and innovations that should not end with the crisis and should be allowed to play a greater role in the future. The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has similar features, and it should spur policy makers who shape the US health care system, to—as Apple Computer cofounder Steve Jobs often urged—“think different.”
The US response to the COVID-19 pandemic highlights several strategies that should be emphasized more in the management of the health care system. These strategies include using waivers to boost federalism, reconsidering the role of hospitals and other institutions as hubs for care, expanding the use of telehealth, and bringing together funds from multiple programs to improve the delivery of health care and health-related services.
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Stuart M. Butler, PhD Stuart M. Butler, PhD, is a Senior Fellow in Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC. Previously, he served as Director of the Center for Policy Innovation at the Heritage Foundation in Washington, DC, where he focused on developing...