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Full-Text Articles in Health Law and Policy

Quality Improvement In Maryland: Partnerships And Progress, Judith D. Moore, Lisa Sprague Dec 2004

Quality Improvement In Maryland: Partnerships And Progress, Judith D. Moore, Lisa Sprague

National Health Policy Forum

This one-and-a-half-day site visit to Easton, Maryland, explored the activities of the Delmarva Foundation, the Quality Improvement Organization (QIO) for Maryland and the District of Columbia. The program reviewed Delmarva’s responsibilities under their Medicare contract and the initiatives they have undertaken with hospitals and other providers to improve health care outcomes and to define, collect, and report quality data. Local hospital officials added their perspective on quality programs and working with Delmarva. Topics of particular interest were health information technology, patient safety, and quality reporting both to government agencies and to consumers.


The Effects Of Copayments On The Use Of Medical Services And Prescription Drugs In Utah's Medicaid Program, Leighton Ku, Elaine Deschamps, Judi Hilman Nov 2004

The Effects Of Copayments On The Use Of Medical Services And Prescription Drugs In Utah's Medicaid Program, Leighton Ku, Elaine Deschamps, Judi Hilman

Health Policy and Management Faculty Publications

In recent years, a number of states have increased cost-sharing for low-income Medicaid beneficiaries as one approach to Medicaid cost-containment. While copayments have been most commonly applied to prescription drugs, they also have been assessed for other services, such as physician visits, hospital admission, or outpatient clinic use.

Prior research has found that when low-income patients are required to pay more for health care services or for prescription drugs, they use fewer services or medications.[2] In some cases, their health could deteriorate, with the result that they may subsequently require more expensive emergency room or inpatient hospital care. While ...


The Provider System For Children's Mental Health: Workforce Capacity And Effective Treatment, Jane Koppelman Oct 2004

The Provider System For Children's Mental Health: Workforce Capacity And Effective Treatment, Jane Koppelman

National Health Policy Forum

This issue brief examines two issues that are key to meeting children’s unmet needs for mental health care: ensuring that the provider supply is adequate and that the care delivered is effective. It describes the shortage of qualified providers to address children’s mental disorders, as well its possible causes; it describes how managed care, to a certain extent, drives practice patterns; and it discusses the gray areas in deciding which providers are most qualified to deliver what care. In addition, this paper introduces what is known about evidence-based care in children’s mental health, the extent to which ...


Electronic Health Records: How Close? How Far To Go?, Lisa Sprague Sep 2004

Electronic Health Records: How Close? How Far To Go?, Lisa Sprague

National Health Policy Forum

This paper looks at the central role of the electronic health record (EHR) in health information technology. It considers the extent to which EHRs are in use and initiatives designed to increase their prevalence, as well as barriers to the widespread adoption of EHRs and efforts to surmount them. Particular attention is given to such obstacles as cost, the professional culture of physicians, standardization, and legal questions.


Medicaid's Disproportionate Share Hospital Program: Complex Structure, Critical Payments, Robert E. Mechanic Sep 2004

Medicaid's Disproportionate Share Hospital Program: Complex Structure, Critical Payments, Robert E. Mechanic

National Health Policy Forum

This background paper describes the history and political evolution of Medicaid’s disproportionate share hospital (DSH) program and examines DSH as it exists today. It highlights the importance of DSH payments for the viability of safety net hospitals and considers the consequences of states’ creative financing strategies for maximizing federal Medicaid matching funds. Finally, this paper reviews several options for improving the structure and effectiveness of the DSH program.


A Report From The Forum Session "Implementing The New Medicare Drug Benefit: Challenges And Opportunities For States", Judith D. Moore Aug 2004

A Report From The Forum Session "Implementing The New Medicare Drug Benefit: Challenges And Opportunities For States", Judith D. Moore

National Health Policy Forum

The National Health Policy Forum convened a meeting on July 22, 2004 to discuss state-based challenges associated with implementing the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act (MMA). The meeting brought together an extremely insightful and experienced group of current and former state officials and other experts to discuss key issues. In keeping with its tradition of promoting a frank, off-the-record exchange on health policy issues, NHPF does not normally prepare written summaries or reports of meetings. However, because this meeting provided vivid illustrations of the importance of state-federal collaboration for the successful implementation of the new Medicare drug benefit ...


Fundamentals Of Community Health Centers, Jessamyn Taylor Aug 2004

Fundamentals Of Community Health Centers, Jessamyn Taylor

National Health Policy Forum

This background paper examines the dominant model of federal grant funding for primary care in the health care safety net: the community health center. It describes the history of the health center program and highlights key policy issues influencing health centers, such as Medicaid payment policies and medically underserved area designations. The paper also examines the recent presidential initiative to expand health centers, including a review of the process used to identify new grantees, an assessment of remaining gaps in capacity, an exploration of continuing challenges, and a discussion of unresolved policy questions.


Tick-Tock: Preparing For The Next Influenza Pandemic, Eileen Salinsky Aug 2004

Tick-Tock: Preparing For The Next Influenza Pandemic, Eileen Salinsky

National Health Policy Forum

This paper describes the nature of pandemic influenza and highlights key challenges for responding to this disease threat. It explains how an influenza pandemic would differ from annual influenza outbreaks and examines how a pandemic virus could emerge. It also explores important issues involved in pandemic preparedness capabilities, including disease surveillance, vaccine production and distribution, antiviral stockpiling, health care system readiness, and public health containment measures. The national pandemic preparedness plan is briefly reviewed, and unresolved policy issues related to the plan’s implementation are identified.


Fundamentals Of The Prescription Drug Market, Christie Provost Peters Aug 2004

Fundamentals Of The Prescription Drug Market, Christie Provost Peters

National Health Policy Forum

This background paper is a primer on the prescription drug market. It provides information on the fundamentals of the pharmaceutical industry and various marketplace stakeholders, including manufacturers, retailers, consumers, regulators, researchers, and purchasers. This paper also examines the various ways the federal government interacts with the pharmaceutical market. Due to the breadth of material addressed, some complex issues and relationships are presented in broad conceptual terms without extensive technical detail.


The Promise And The Reality Of Long-Term Care Insurance, Randy Desonia Jul 2004

The Promise And The Reality Of Long-Term Care Insurance, Randy Desonia

National Health Policy Forum

The aging of the nation’s population will create a surge in the need for long-term care services, putting pressure on existing funding sources and fueling demand for more. This paper examines one financing option—private long-term care insurance—and summarizes its brief history and the several critical precedents that have influenced the products as currently sold. Other topics discussed include the challenges to encouraging sales growth as well as increasing the role of this type of insurance in paying for long-term care.


Medicaid Prescription Drug Spending And Use, Brian Bruen, Arunabh Ghosh Jun 2004

Medicaid Prescription Drug Spending And Use, Brian Bruen, Arunabh Ghosh

Health Policy and Management Issue Briefs

No abstract provided.


The Economics Of Quality: Changing Incentives In Cincinnati, Lisa Sprague, Nora Super May 2004

The Economics Of Quality: Changing Incentives In Cincinnati, Lisa Sprague, Nora Super

National Health Policy Forum

This site visit focused on private market dynamics and quality improvement initiatives. Cincinnati is characterized by strong players in all sectors of the market: employers such as Procter and Gamble and General Electric, hospital systems, health plans, and physician groups with the power to “push back” in contract negotiations. The city is a pilot site for Bridges to Excellence, a pay-for-performance initiative spearheaded by GE. Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center is a grantee under the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Pursuing Perfection program. Among the issues explored were physician supply, incentive structures, specialty hospitals, and information technology.


Consumer Cost Sharing In Private Health Insurance: On The Threshold Of Change, Veronica V. Goff May 2004

Consumer Cost Sharing In Private Health Insurance: On The Threshold Of Change, Veronica V. Goff

National Health Policy Forum

Employers are asking employees to pay more for health care through higher premium contributions, share of contribution, and out-of-pocket maximums, along with variations in deductibles, copays, and coinsurance based on choice of providers, networks, drugs, and other services. This issue brief examines consumer cost-sharing trends in private insurance, discusses the outlook for cost sharing in employment-based benefits, and considers public policies to support health care markets for consumers.


Medicare's Chronic Care Improvement Pilot Program: What Is Its Potential?, Nora Super May 2004

Medicare's Chronic Care Improvement Pilot Program: What Is Its Potential?, Nora Super

National Health Policy Forum

This paper describes the voluntary chronic care improvement program under traditional fee-for-service Medicare as authorized by the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act (MMA) of 2003 (Public Law 108-173; section 721). This brief analyzes the emerging issues raised by this new program, including which chronic conditions and regional areas will be targeted, the types of entities that may participate, the physician’s role in care management, and the adoption and use of health information technology and evidence-based clinical guidelines.


Veterans' Health Care: Balancing Resources And Responsibilities, Lisa Sprague Apr 2004

Veterans' Health Care: Balancing Resources And Responsibilities, Lisa Sprague

National Health Policy Forum

This paper looks at the health care benefits and services administered by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. It examines management strategies adopted within the department to allocate resources, structure benefits, and improve quality. Some recommendations made by the General Accounting Office and the President’s Task Force to Improve Health Care Delivery for Our Nation’s Veterans are reviewed, in particular the emphasis of the latter on increased collaboration with the Department of Defense. Long-term proposals to balance service commitments and financing also are considered.


Necessary But Not Sufficient? Physician Volunteerism And The Health Care Safety Net, Eileen Salinsky Mar 2004

Necessary But Not Sufficient? Physician Volunteerism And The Health Care Safety Net, Eileen Salinsky

National Health Policy Forum

This paper examines the role of physician-sponsored charity care in meeting the health care needs of the uninsured. The paper provides an overview of current charity care levels by medical specialties and geographic regions, discusses limitations in available data, and describes the settings in which charity care is provided. The paper also summarizes the factors that motivate physicians to provide volunteer services, as well as the barriers that hinder volunteer activities, including malpractice insurance concerns. Also discussed are a range of public policies, both existing and considered, that support volunteer activities, with a particular emphasis on the expansion of Federal ...


The Health Care Safety Net In South Carolina: A Test Of Tenacity, Jennifer Ryan, Randy Desonia Feb 2004

The Health Care Safety Net In South Carolina: A Test Of Tenacity, Jennifer Ryan, Randy Desonia

National Health Policy Forum

This site visit to the state of South Carolina provided an opportunity to experience and understand the unique makeup of the health care safety net in a southern state. Site visitors had the opportunity to interact with health care providers, state officials, faith-based organizations and leaders of provider-driven volunteer initiatives. They also learned about the challenges of access to care in rural areas and among diverse population groups. The group visited the Sea Island Medical Center and Our Lady of Mercy Community Outreach and Wellness House; a migrant farm worker camp on Johns Island; and a “medical home” site, Medical ...


Democratic Ideas To Address The Problem Of Americans Without Health Insurance, Jeanne Lambrew Jan 2004

Democratic Ideas To Address The Problem Of Americans Without Health Insurance, Jeanne Lambrew

Health Policy and Management Congressional Testimonies

No abstract provided.