Monday, September 25, 2006

Health policy redux

Our reading assignment in Health Law tomorrow is Chapter 7 in the casebook by Furrow et al. ("Health Care Cost and Access: The Policy Context"). The main focus of the reading is a comparison of various ways of expanding access and controlling costs. It's fortuitous that the invaluable journal Health Affairs, has just posted a new article ("U.S. Health System Performance: A National Scorecard") by researchers at The Commonwealth Fund. The full text of the article will be available for free until October 1 (PDF; HTML). Here's the abstract:

This paper presents the findings of a new scorecard designed to assess and monitor multiple domains of U.S. health system performance. The scorecard uses national and international data to identify performance benchmarks and calculates simple ratio scores comparing U.S averages to benchmarks. Average ratio scores range from 51 to 71 across domains of health outcomes, quality, access, equity, and efficiency. The overall picture that emerges from the scorecard is one of missed opportunities and room for improvement. The findings underscore the importance of policies that take a coherent, whole-system approach to change and address the interaction of access, quality, and cost.
[Health Affairs 25 (2006): w457-w475;10.1377/hlthaff. 25.w457]

The overall score for the U.S. is 61 out of a possible 100.
posted by tommayo, 2:35 AM

Health care law (including public health law, medical ethics, and life sciences), with digressions into constitutional law, poetry, and other things that matter