People in the Portland area have an opportunity this spring to weigh in on an important topic: health care.

For months, the news has been buzzing about changes in our health care system, like the Affordable Care Act and health insurance exchanges. As millions of Americans begin to take a more active role in their health care, now is the time for everyone with insurance to make their voices heard.

From February through April, health insurers conduct a survey called the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems, which is mailed to select people with health insurance, including those enrolled in an individual plan, an employer-sponsored plan and Medicare.

Responding to the survey by mail or phone is one way you can become part of the broader effort to improve our nation’s health care system. Responses are kept anonymous.

Survey responses help the government and insurance providers identify ways to better serve people and improve the care they receive. The government and insurers want to make sure that people in the Portland area receive good medical care from doctors they trust. The CAHPS survey is one tool used to achieve this goal.

The CAHPS survey is an important opportunity for Americans to have a say in how health care changes in the years ahead. I encourage people in the Portland area to respond to the survey, as this one simple step can help improve health care for all of us.

Dennis Hsieh, M.D.
regional medical director, UnitedHealthcare

Newtown, Pa.