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By Jim Schowalter, Council president

Leaving this job is difficult.

Here, Minnesotans who understand their work in depth come together across traditional boundaries to make health care better. People who work with hospitals, clinics, the state, community groups and other organizations share the same goals. While sometimes we disagree, we all want to make meaningful changes that improve Minnesotans’ lives. That’s the legacy of our nonprofit-led health care system.

Before I leave at the end of the month, the Council’s strong and experienced staff and I will keep moving this important work forward. That includes:

  • Making sure policymakers understand that Minnesotans who buy insurance on their own need the state’s Premium Security Plan, also known as reinsurance, extended to avoid huge premium increases.
  • The provider tax needs to continue because it helps makes sure all Minnesotans can get care.
  • Continuing our work on prescription drug prices and dozens of other policy issues the Council evaluates to help figure out what changes mean for Minnesotans across the state.

Making health care more affordable is important work, and I’ll continue doing that when I join HealthPartners provider partnerships’ team this spring.

I’m confident the Council’s next leader will continue the organization’s 34-year commitment to creating a space where competitors work together to make sure all Minnesotans get the care they need today and into the future. It’s important work and I’m grateful to have been a part of it for the past four years.