New Health System Scorecard: States Made Little Progress in Years Prior to ACA

eAlert e1d33b2f-7b4e-49df-a919-e5af56166a2e

Our new <a href="/publications/fund-reports/2014/apr/aiming-higher-results-scorecard-state-health-system-performance">Scorecard on State Health System Performance</a> is out, and the results are disappointing: in the five years preceding implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s major coverage provisions, the majority of states declined or failed to improve on two-thirds of the measures that could be tracked over time. <br /><br />
Commonwealth Fund researchers ranked the health systems of every state and the District of Columbia on a variety of health care measures. Of the 34 measures that could be tracked between 2007 and 2011–12, all states saw meaningful improvement on at least seven. But more than half of states lost ground on at least nine measures. <br />
<br />
Moreover, wide gaps have persisted since our previous state scorecards, with top states sometimes performing two to eight times better than the lowest-performers. For example, elderly patients receive high-risk medications and children are hospitalized with asthma at more than twice the rate in states near the bottom of the scorecard rankings compared with states near the top. <br />
<br />
Areas of health care where a majority of the states were able to raise their performance have often been the focus of concerted federal, state, or local improvement efforts, the researchers note. “This state scorecard underscores the importance of national and state actions to ensure that no matter where a person lives, they have access to an affordable, high-quality health system,” said Commonwealth Fund Senior Vice President Cathy Schoen. <br />
<br />
Visit <a href="/publications/fund-reports/2014/apr/aiming-higher-results-scorecard-state-health-system-performance"></a> to read the report, view our infographics, and use an <a href="">interactive map</a> to download individual state profiles and compare states’ performance. <br />