Who: Dr. Shantanu Agrawal, 40
New role: President and CEO of the National Quality Forum, a Washington, D.C.-based nonpartisan organization that aims to improve healthcare through quality metrics. He replaces Helen Darling, who was interim CEO since March 2016.
Background: Agrawal was most recently deputy administrator and director of the CMS' Center for Program Integrity. He previously served as the center's chief medical officer and was instrumental in the launch of several initiatives surrounding data transparency and analytics.
An industry in transition: Agrawal said healthcare is in a “major period of transition” as it moves toward value-based reimbursement. A large part of the successful transition will be the use of metrics for measuring quality, he said.
Listening to patients, providers: “Our metrics really have to be focused on what patients need,” Agrawal said. A large part in achieving that is “listening closely to what they are saying,” he said. In addition, Agrawal said it's critical that physicians feel encouraged and supported as they continue to adapt to technology to improve quality. “We need to make quality measurement less of a burden to them,” he said.