Health Policy Forum

Altarum Institute’s Health Policy Forum offers a neutral setting for discussion and consideration of health-related issues facing our nation.  Authors represent leading thinkers in health research, policy, and advocacy and include Altarum staff members and guest contributors who provide insightful, fact-based commentary and analysis regarding a range of health care topics. The site reaches a diverse audience of roughly 4,000 visitors from academia, government, industry, and health-related fields.

Blog Posts

Displaying 1 - 20 of 527

Rethinking Nutrition Education and Evaluation—Facing New Realities

February 24, 2015

Helping Americans eat smart and maintain a healthy weight is one of the strategic priorities of the U.S.

“Nondiscrimination in Health Care”—States Stepping Up

February 23, 2015

One of the most beguiling components of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) is Section 2706, “Non-discrimination in health care,” whose provisions direct insurers to end discrimination against all health care providers—and classes of providers, such as acupuncturists—who are licensed in their states but who are still outside the reimbursement system.

The Texas Way

February 19, 2015

If you’ve never been to Texas, it can be hard to understand the depth of pride we Texans have in our state. Some of it is hyperbole (“On the eighth day, God created Texas”), but our history as an economic powerhouse is real. You can’t lead the nation in job growth and new business creation and not feel a swell of pride.

Initial CMS Evaluations of Readmissions Have Serious Flaws

February 17, 2015

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has quietly put out two evaluations of the readmissions work– and both documents are remarkable for their failure to evaluate the programs fairly or to provide insights as to what works in what circumstances.

Heart-Healthy Social Media

February 12, 2015

February is American Heart Month, a great time to get people to think about how they can prevent heart disease and stroke.

The Stabilize Medicaid and CHIP Coverage Act Lays the Groundwork for Quality Improvement in Medicaid and CHIP

February 10, 2015

Taken together, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) cover more than one in four Americans, mostly children, pregnant women, seniors, families, and persons with disabilities.

February Is National Children’s Dental Health Month: Chew on This

February 3, 2015

Every February, the American Dental Association (ADA) sponsors National Children’s Dental Health Month.

To Gauge the Health of Your Whole Community, Look to Your Teens

January 29, 2015

The health of teenagers is a powerful signal of the health of an entire community, and also a leading indicator of the future health of that community.

Pass the Peas, Please: The Benefits of Family-Style Meals

January 27, 2015

Parents and teachers share a common desire to make sure that the children in their care get balanced meals with adequate helpings of fruits, vegetables, proteins, and other meal components.

Consumers Have Put More Skin in the Health Game—Now What?

January 22, 2015

A mantra of health economists, policymakers, insurance administrators, and commentators has been that consumers need “more skin in the game” to promote lower health costs and cost growth rates.

Airline-Industry Healthcare

January 20, 2015

Such outrage about awful healthcare! Too many mistakes, too many adverse drug reactions, hospitals making people sick, accidents in the operating room, arrogant doctors, costs going through the roof. What’s the matter? Everyone wants answe

6.7 Million and Counting

January 15, 2015

One Sentence It is estimated that by the end of the 2015 enrollment period, which began November 1, 2014, and ends February 15, 2015, nearly 9.1 million people will have health insurance, allowing access to health care services through options less expensive than emergency room

Fast, Easy, Low-Cost: How Will Market Disruptors Change Health Care Delivery

January 13, 2015

Shifting consumer requirements are opening the doors for new entrants in health care

Frail, Frightened, and Forgotten: Our Fate Unless We Change It

January 8, 2015

Good news! We will, most of us, live to a ripe old age!

Medical Costs over the Long Run: 1850–2050

January 6, 2015

The creation of modern medicine was both costly and valuable, raising spending (from 4% of GDP to 15%) and longevity (from 47 to 78 years) during the last century (Fogel, 2004).

Patients Turn to Palliative Care for Relief from Serious Illness

December 30, 2014

Patients with serious illnesses need medical treatments to survive. But they are increasingly taking advantage of the specialty known as palliative care, which offers day-to-day relief from symptoms as well as stress and lifestyle management.

The Expected Impact of Expanded Coverage on Health Care Utilization and Spending

December 19, 2014

The expansion of coverage to some 10 million individuals in 2014 has implications for the growth rate in national health expenditures and on health workforce requirements.

Making Health Care Innovate like IT

December 18, 2014

Why has health care lagged so far behind information technology in terms of innovation?

Protecting Hospitals That Improve Population Health

December 16, 2014

The Medicare Readmission Reduction Program (MRRP) encourages hospitals to reduce readmissions within 30 days of discharge by imposing substantial financial penalties on hospitals with more readmissions than would be expected if the same patients were discharged from an average hospital.

Is Healthcare Transparency Stuck in the Dark Ages?

December 11, 2014

As the quality and cost transparency movements gain support within the healthcare industry, a more important question persists: what will actually work for consumers?



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