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The State Children's Health Insurance Program: Past, Present, and Future

February 9, 2007 - At the end of the 2007 fiscal year, congressional authorization for the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) is set to expire. A new report examines the array of policy options that Congress is likely to consider.

Fund Report

State Strategies to Expand Health Insurance Coverage: Trends and Lessons for Policymakers

February 7, 2007 - Frustrated by the lack of federal response to the nation's growing uninsured crisis, state leaders are taking matters into their own hands. This new Fund report describes the latest round of state coverage expansions efforts, including those in California, Maine, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Vermont.

Fund Report

Public Reporting and Transparency

February 6, 2007 - Interest in collecting and publicly reporting information about the cost and quality of health care has been growing. A new Fund report provides a short history of efforts to report information on health system performance, explores the key policy issues in play, and offers lessons from the experience of public reporting efforts to date.

Fund Report

Enhancing Value in Medicare: Demonstrations and Other Initiatives to Improve the Program

February 1, 2007 - Medicare is undertaking a number of demonstrations aimed at improving the quality and coordination of services provided to its beneficiaries. A new Commonwealth Fund report examines Medicare's efforts to play a more active role in ensuring that it purchases appropriate, high-quality, and efficient health care for its beneficiaries.

Fund Report

Slowing the Growth of U.S. Health Care Expenditures: What Are the Options?

January 29, 2007 - This new report illuminates factors contributing to high health care expenditures and examines strategies that have the potential to achieve savings, slow spending growth, and improve health system performance.

Fund Report

Public Roles of U.S. Physicians: Community Participation, Political Involvement, and Collective Advocacy

January 11, 2007 - A survey of primary care physicians in the U.S. finds that nearly all believe physicians should have a public role, and two-thirds are actively involved in community activities, political work, or advocacy. The Fund-supported study in JAMA was conducted by former Harkness Fellow Russell L. Gruen and researchers at Harvard Medical School.

In the Literature

Health Care Spending: An Encouraging Sign?

January 10, 2007 - A new Data Brief from the Commonwealth Fund Commission on a High Performance Health System offers perspective on the latest expenditure data, published in Health Affairs.

Data Brief

Learning from High Performance Health Systems Around the Globe

January 10, 2007 - In invited testimony before the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee on Jan. 10, Commonwealth Fund President Karen Davis detailed how the health care system in the United States lags behind several other industrialized nations—and how innovations in those countries offer options for improving heath care delivery in the U.S.


Change Will Be Incremental: Democrats Will Push a Health Care Agenda, But Bush Still Stands in the Way

January 8, 2007 - In this commentary, Representative Pete Stark of California writes that the 110th Congress will bring new priorities, but emphasizes that change is still likely to be incremental due to the current administration.


Bipartisan Progress Is Possible: GOP, Democrats Will Work on a Full Range of Health Policy Issues

January 8, 2007 - In this commentary, Senator Mike Enzi of Wyoming expresses his confidence that the Senate will continue to respond to the health care priorities facing most Americans, and outlines the issues he expects the Senate to act on in the next two years.


Health Care Opinion Leaders' Views on Priorities for the New Congress

January 8, 2007 - Covering the uninsured tops experts' list of priorities for the new Congress, according to the ninth Health Care Opinion Leaders Survey. Other top priorities include controlling rising health care costs, reforming Medicare to ensure long-term solvency, and increasing the use of information technology.

Data Brief

A Blueprint for Universal Health Insurance Coverage in New York

December 19, 2006 - This report offers the first comprehensive analysis of how New York State could implement universal insurance. The report is a joint project of the United Hospital Fund and The Commonwealth Fund.

Fund Report

The 2nd Annual EBRI/Commonwealth Fund Consumerism in Health Care Survey, 2006: Early Experience With High-Deductible and Consumer-Driven Health Plans

December 7, 2006 - Consumer-driven health plans are not catching on, according to a survey released today by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) and The Commonwealth Fund. Enrollment in consumer-driven plans remains small, and satisfaction continues to be lower compared with more comprehensive health insurance.

Issue Brief

Employers' Views on Incremental Measures to Expand Health Coverage

November 14, 2006 - Employers say they should share in the cost of health insurance for employees, either by covering their own workers or by contributing to a fund to cover the uninsured, according to recent Fund-supported Health Affairs article.

In the Literature

The National Committee for Quality Assurance's The State of Health Care Quality 2006

November 13, 2006 - The National Committee for Quality Assurance's 2006 report on the performance of U.S. health plans found improvement in clinical quality measures for plans that collect and report performance data. In the first Commission on a High Performance Health System Data Brief, the implications of this report are evaluated.

Data Brief