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Impact of Medicare Part D on Seniors' Out-of-Pocket Expenditures on Medications

August 10, 2010 - The Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit, implemented in January 2006, sought to reduce out-of-pocket drug costs for seniors and other Medicare beneficiaries. A new study in the Archives of Internal Medicine led by a former Commonwealth Fund Harkness Fellow examined whether the program has been successful in achieving this goal.

Literature Abstract

Prescription Coverage, Use and Spending Before and After Part D Implementation: A National Longitudinal Panel Study

August 5, 2010 - This Fund-supported study of Medicare Part D implementation in the Journal of General Internal Medicine found that the majority of low-income, chronically ill seniors who still lacked prescription coverage were unaware of the low-income assistance available for Part D premiums.

Literature Abstract

Achieving the Vision: Payment Reform

August 5, 2010 - In a chapter for Partners in Health: How Physicians and Hospitals Can Be Accountable Together, Stuart Guterman, The Commonwealth Fund's vice president for payment and system reform, and Anthony Shih, chief quality officer for the health care consultancy IPRO, outline their vision for health care payment reform.

Literature Abstract

The Triple Aim Journey: Improving Population Health and Patients' Experience of Care, While Reducing Costs

July 22, 2010 - These three case studies of organizations participating in the Institute for Healthcare Improvement's Triple Aim initiative shed light on how partnering with providers and organizing care can improve the health of a population and patients' experience while lowering—or at least reducing the rate of increase in—the per capita cost of care.

Case Study

CareOregon: Transforming the Role of a Medicaid Health Plan from Payer to Partner

July 22, 2010 - This case study looks at how CareOregon, an Oregon-based nonprofit Medicaid health plan, is transforming its role from payer to integrator of care on behalf of its members by partnering with health care providers to create and pursue a common vision for improving primary care delivery.

Case Study

Genesys HealthWorks: Pursuing the Triple Aim Through a Primary Care-Based Delivery System, Integrated Self-Management Support, and Community Partnerships

July 22, 2010 - Genesys HealthWorks is a model of care developed by Genesys Health System in metropolitan Flint, Michigan. This case study looks at how Genesys aims to improve population health and the patient experience of care while reducing or controlling increases in the per capita cost of care.

Case Study

Genesee Health Plan: Improving Access to Care and the Health of Uninsured Residents Through a County Health Plan

July 22, 2010 - Genesee Health Plan is a community-based nonprofit that provides primary care and other basic health care services to low-income, uninsured adults in Michigan. This case study looks at how, by increasing access to physician services and supporting patients to adopt healthy behaviors and manage chronic disease, the plan significantly reduced its enrollees' use of emergency department services and hospital admissions.

Case Study

QuadMed: Transforming Employer-Sponsored Health Care Through Workplace Primary Care and Wellness Programs

July 22, 2010 - This case study looks at how Wisconsin-based printing company Quad/Graphics transformed itself from a purchaser of health insurance to an investor in employee health and productivity by creating worksite health clinics that focus on comprehensive primary care and wellness programs.

Case Study

National Progress Report on eHealth

July 13, 2010 - A new report from eHealth Initiative tracks developments over the past three years in promoting the adoption and use of health IT.

Literature Abstract

Public Hospital Case Study Series: Introduction

July 7, 2010 - Compared with other hospitals, public hospitals are generally assumed to face multiple barriers to providing high-quality care: lower revenues; sicker patients who may have infrequent contact with the health care system; and an older infrastructure, particularly related to health information technology.
This case study series set out to find how some public hospitals have succeeded in achieving excellence in quality of care, in spite of such challenges.

Case Study

Memorial Healthcare System: A Public System Focusing on Patient- and Family-Centered Care

July 7, 2010 - This case study describes the strategies and factors that appear to contribute to high adherence to "core" quality measures at Memorial Healthcare System. It is part of series of case studies on high-performing public hospitals.

Case Study

Carolinas Medical Center: Demonstrating High Quality in the Public Sector

July 7, 2010 - High scores on core measures distinguish the Carolinas Medical Center network hospitals, and Carolinas Medical Center–University as the top performer among them. It is part of series of case studies on high-performing public hospitals.

Case Study

Norman Regional Health System: A City-Owned Public Trust Dedicated to Improving Performance

July 7, 2010 - This case study focuses on Norman Regional Health System's achievement in providing recommended treatment on process-of-care, or "core," measures. It is part of series of case studies on high-performing public hospitals.

Case Study

Key Elements in Developing and Implementing Payment Innovations

June 8, 2010 - The recently passed health reform law establishes new payment initatives to provide incentives for better and more efficient care. For these initiatives to be successful, they will have to produce changes in health care delivery, while allowing for the flexibility to tailor those changes to different circumstances.

Policy Points

Developing Innovative Payment Approaches: Finding the Path to High Performance

June 8, 2010 - The Commonwealth Fund Commission on a High Performance Health System offers payment innovations that the new Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation should introduce to reward more-integrated, high-value care.

Issue Brief