William M. Sage on Health Care Reform Marketing

William SageYesterday, William M. Sage, MD, JD, the Vice Provost for Health Affairs and James R. Dougherty Chair for Faculty Excellence at the University of Texas, delivered the 2011 Johnson & Johnson Law and Medicine Colloquium titled “Brand New Law: The Marketing of Health Care Reform.

Prof. Sage centered his talk around his perceived mismanagement by the Obama administration of the new health care reforms. He outlined a basic marketing strategy: educate, name, build brand equity. He proceeded to outline how none of the steps were followed, creating a communication breakdown and void that opponents were able to seize and control the discussion. Without proper education, rumors of “death panels” were allowed to linger. Without a new name, ObamaCare has reigned supreme. And without brand equity, nobody is buying into the collective ownership needed to mark success on a program this unprecedented. Professor Sage ended his prepared remarks by listing a few suggestions to help repair public perception and put health care reform back on the right track.

We thank Professor Sage for coming out to give this Colloquium and Johnson & Johnson for their support.

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