NJHCQI Applauds NJ’s “Great Leap Forward” on Health Care Reform

For Immediate Release
Contact: Sarah McLallen or David Knowlton (609) 393-4931
Perth Amboy, NJ – The New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute (NJHCQI) today congratulated Governor Jon Corzine, the legislative leaders and the sponsors of legislation signed into law by the Governor (S1557/A2624) which enabled New Jersey to take a “great leap forward” in its efforts to provide health care coverage for all of the state’s citizens.
“Every journey begins with a first step,” said David Knowlton, President and CEO of the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute. “Today actually marks a great leap forward for New Jersey on the road to health care reform. As I have said in the past, absolutely nothing will more quickly improve health care quality in our state than providing affordable and accessible health care coverage to those who now find it out of reach. In the near term, thousands of children in our state will see the quality of their medical care improved and in the very near future, all of our citizens will be able to say they reside in a state which treasures their health.”
Mr. Knowlton joined Governor Corzine and legislative leaders at a bill signing ceremony today at Raritan Bay Medical Center. 
“I want to congratulate Senator Joseph Vitale, Senator Bob Singer, Assemblymen Neil Cohen and Lou Greenwald for their extraordinary leadership and tenacious commitment to this effort,” Knowlton said. “And I want to commend Governor Corzine, Senate President Codey and Speaker Roberts for helping to find the funds necessary to begin this health care reform journey in a very difficult budget year. Both the legislature and the Governor have demonstrated exactly where their priorities lie.”
At the request of Senator Vitale, the Quality Institute began working more than two years ago to make health care reform a reality by convening a group of health care stakeholders who all had an interest in promoting affordable and accessible health care coverage in the state. 
Founded in 1997 and partially funded by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the NJHCQI brings together all key stakeholders to make real and measurable improvements in New Jersey’s health care system. NJHCQI seeks to empower health care purchasers and consumers by publishing the results of objective research, comparative data on providers, and other pertinent educational information so that purchasers and consumers may adopt value-based purchasing practices and be able to make informed decisions on the merits of various health care programs, treatments and services. NJHCQI was designated as the lead agency in New Jersey for the national Leapfrog Group effort in April 2002.
Important consumer health care and council membership information can be found at the NJHCQI web site: www.njhcqi.org.