International Symposium on Health Care Policy, Fall 2018


To spark creative thinking around shared challenges in health care, The Commonwealth Fund's annual International Symposium on Health Care Policy has, since 1998, brought together the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services and other key U.S. federal officials with health ministers, senior government officials, and international experts from other high-income countries. Learning about other national approaches to achieving high performance, including best practices in care for high-need, high-cost patients, can benefit the United States, whose health spending outpaces other nations despite comparatively worse medical outcomes. The 21st annual International Symposium, to be held in November 2018 in Washington, D.C., will focus on health care delivery system models for patients with complex health and social needs. The 11 participating countries will be challenged to put forward models that produce the best health outcomes and lowest costs for a set of high-need, high-cost patient personas with selected health conditions. The aim of the meeting is to understand the most effective payment mechanisms for driving quality, efficiency, and care coordination; methods for integrating health, mental health, and social services; strategies and technologies to engage and empower patients; and ways to ensure end-of-life care is compassionate and appropriate. Harkness Fellows will be recruited in each country to work with the health ministry in selecting care delivery models that yield high-value care for patients with complex needs. Through video interviews shown throughout the symposium, participants will be able to hear the perspectives of patients who have experienced the care models being showcased. The 85 invitees to the meeting will include the health ministers of Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the U.S., as well as senior government officials, frontline delivery system leaders, payers, and regulators. The symposium will further establish The Commonwealth Fund's role in promoting innovative thinking on health care policy and high-level policy exchanges among advanced nations. The insights gained will also inform Fund work and U.S. health reform efforts.

Grant Details

Grantee Organization:
The Commonwealth Fund
Principal Investigator:
Robin Osborn, M.B.A.
Award Amount:
Approval Date:
July 11, 2017

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