ANNAPOLIS, MD (July 12, 2011) - Governor Martin O'Malley today announced the appointment of four new members to the Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC). The new members are John M. Colmers, Dr. Bernadette C. Loftus, Thomas R. Mullen, and Jack C. Keane.

"I thank these experts for their willingness to serve," said Governor O'Malley. "Innovation in hospital payment overseen by the Health Services Cost Review Commission will help Maryland control costs and improve health outcomes."

Mr. Colmers will serve as the new chair of the Commission. He is currently vice president, Health Care Transformation and Strategic Planning for Johns Hopkins Medicine. From January 2007 to January 2011, he served as the Secretary of the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. He previously worked as a senior program officer for the Milbank Memorial Fund, as the executive director of the Maryland Health Care Commission, and as the executive director of the Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission.

Dr. Loftus is the associate executive director of the Permanente Medical Group, where she is responsible for the Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group. This organization of physicians represents 800 doctors in multiple specialties in the Baltimore, Washington D.C., and Virginia corridor. From 1998 to 2008, Dr. Loftus served as physician-in-chief at the Santa Clara Medical Center.

Mr. Mullen has served as the president and chief executive officer of Mercy Health Services and Mercy Medical Center since July 1, 1999. He previously served as the vice president for finance for the University of Maryland Medical System Corporation.

Mr. Keane is an experienced health care consultant with expertise in health care payment policy. He has worked for labor unions, insurers, physician organizations, and hospital associations. He previously served as director of the Hospital Bureau for the Massachusetts Rate Setting Commission and as deputy director for the Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission.

The HSCRC has set Maryland hospital rates for all payers, including Medicare and Medicaid, since 1977. The HSCRC has also developed numerous innovative approaches to paying for performance and incentivizing quality care.