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News about Health Services Research

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  • How Counties Can Use Evidence-Based Policymaking to Achieve Better Outcomes (December 2018) - (Pew Charitable Trusts) - Dec 14, 2018 Details

    Although significant research has been conducted on state-level efforts to advance evidence-based policymaking, little research exists about these practices at the county level. This report by the Pew-MacArthur Results First Initiative and NACo is a first-of-its-kind look at how counties engage in this work. It also identifies ways counties can support and sustain their success.


  • What's New for 2019 MeSH - (National Library of Medicine (NLM), NIH) - Dec 14, 2018 Details

    MeSH is the National Library of Medicine (NLM) controlled vocabulary thesaurus that is updated annually. NLM uses the MeSH thesaurus to index articles from thousands of biomedical journals for the MEDLINE/PubMed database and for the cataloging of books, documents, and audiovisuals acquired by the library. Post highlights changes to MeSH for 2019.




  • Evidence standards framework for digital health technologies - (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)) - Dec 14, 2018 Details

    This document describes an evidence standards framework for digital health technologies (DHTs). It was developed by NICE between June and December 2018, nin collaboration with NHS England, Public Health England and MedCity.


  • Value-Based Payment in Medicaid Managed Long-Term Services and Supports: A Checklist for States - (Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS)) - Dec 13, 2018 Details

    This checklist identifies four issues that states may want to explore as they develop and adopt VBP models for home- and community-based services (HCBS) within managed long-term services and supports programs, including: (1) assessing available support from the state policy environment; (2) selecting the right performance measures to reward HCBS providers; (3) selecting payment models that create the right financial incentives for improved value; and (4) addressing operational issues faced by plans and providers.


  • Optimizing Rural Health: A Community Healthcare Blueprint (2018) - (Texas A&M University) - Dec 13, 2018 Details

    Rural communities are losing their hospitals across the United States. Eight-three hospitals have closed their doors since January 2010. This report seeks to answer the question, “What’s next for these rural communities?” and contains the findings from three rural Texas communities, a blueprint for next steps, and an appendix section of summary papers for further information.



  • Updated Health Spending Explorer Features the Latest National Data - (Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF)) - Dec 12, 2018 Details

    The latest data on U.S. health spending are now available on the Health Spending Explorer, an interactive tool that allows users to explore trends in health expenditures by federal and local governments, insurers, service providers, and individuals. The data, which span from 1960 to 2017, are based on the just-released national health spending report from the federal government. Users can build and download custom charts, with options to filter data by type of service and source of funds.


  • Early Childhood Education and Care - (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF)) - Dec 12, 2018 Details

    This report summarizes 17 selected federal programs that are particularly important for early childhood education and care.





  • Measuring Barriers to Mental Health Care in the Military - (RAND Corporation) - Dec 12, 2018 Details

    This report summarizes the findings of a study to develop an item bank of barriers to mental health care for the Department of Defense (DoD); establish the reliability and preliminary validity of the item bank and a short form (i.e., a subset of items from the bank that can be used as a short survey); and identify options for how DoD can use the item bank to assess and monitor barriers to such care.






  • Repeal and Replace, Part II: Improving Pay-for-Performance in Medicare - (Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.) - Dec 10, 2018 Details

    To develop a more effective Medicare pay-for-performance program, policymakers should: build on experience and the literature to develop evidence-based program principles; engage clinicians to address the heterogeneity of practice structures, specialties, and conditions; emphasize broad program principles over detailed parameters in any new legislation; and plan to evaluate the program on an ongoing basis.





  • EvidenceNOW Tools for Change - (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), HHS) - Dec 10, 2018 Details

    Tools for Change is designed to help primary care practices and practice facilitators search among 100 tools and resources to increase their use of evidence and improve patient care. A quality improvement framework—the EvidenceNOW Key Driver Diagram—helps users to target change strategies such as selecting and customizing the best evidence, creating and supporting high functioning teams, and engaging patients and families in evidence-based care.



  • Cross-Sector Partnerships to Improve Health and Housing Outcomes: Resource Guide (October 2018) - (Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO)) - Dec 07, 2018 Details

    CDC, HUD, and the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) brought together public, private, and nonprofit leaders on Nov. 29-30, 2016 to explore how they could work together to improve health and housing outcomes. This convening identified existing partnership, financing, and data-sharing approaches for cross-sector partnerships among healthcare, housing providers, and other sectors that improve health and housing outcomes. This resource guide synthesizes the lessons learned from the 2016 convening and provides public health leaders with strategies to build effective partnerships.


  • Healthiest Communities Data Challenge - (AcademyHealth) - Dec 07, 2018 Details

    Challenge seeks ideas on how to leverage the available data in the Healthiest Communities rankings, a collaboration between the Aetna Foundation and U.S. News & World Report, to make them more actionable and drive better health outcomes in communities.


  • The Cost of Employer Insurance Is a Growing Burden for Middle-Income Families - (Commonwealth Fund) - Dec 07, 2018 Details

    Brief uses the latest data from the federal Medical Expenditure Panel Survey–Insurance Component (MEPS–IC) to examine trends in employer premiums at the state level to see how much workers and their families are paying for their employer coverage in terms of premium contributions and deductibles.




  • Young Leaders Visualize Health Equity - (National Academy of Medicine) - Dec 06, 2018 Details

    The National Academy of Medicine (NAM) is calling on young leaders, ages 5-26, to use art to explore how the social determinants of health play a role in shaping their lives and their communities, and what it might look and feel like to one day live in a world where everyone has the same chance to be healthy, safe, and happy. The submission deadline is February 28, 2019.


  • Rural New Mexico: Perspectives on Health Care and Access - Dec 06, 2018 Details

    Interactive presentation on the definitions of rural and urban, rural health indicators, geography and health outcomes, the social determinants of health, rural behavioral health, and identifying needs of the entire community rather than just priority populations. (New Mexico Public Health Institute)



  • Heroin-Assisted Treatment and Supervised Drug Consumption Sites - (RAND Corporation) - Dec 06, 2018 Details

    This working paper is part of a series of reports assessing the evidence on and arguments made about heroin-assisted treatment and supervised consumption sites and examining some of the issues associated with implementing them in the United States.



  • Adverse Events in Long-Term-Care Hospitals: National Incidence Among Medicare Beneficiaries - (Office of Inspector General (OIG), HHS) - Dec 04, 2018 Details

    Almost half (46 percent) of Medicare patients in long-term care hospitals experienced adverse events (21 percent) or temporary harm events (25 percent) during their stays. In many cases, physician reviewers determined that the harm could have been prevented if the hospitals had provided better care; in other cases, patients’ health conditions made them susceptible and the harm was not preventable.




  • Multinational Comparisons of Health Systems Data, 2018 - (Commonwealth Fund) - Dec 03, 2018 Details

    Chartbook uses data collected by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) to compare health care systems and performance on a range of topics, including spending, hospitals, physicians, pharmaceuticals, prevention, mortality, quality and safety, and prices.



  • Re-approval of Kentucky Medicaid Demonstration Waiver - (Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF)) - Dec 03, 2018 Details

    On November 20, 2018, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) re-approved a Section 1115 demonstration waiver program called Kentucky HEALTH, as a component of the state’s overall KY HEALTH (“Kentucky Helping to Engage and Achieve Long Term Health”) demonstration. Brief highlights key elements of the waiver.



  • MEDLINE Data Changes—2019 - (National Library of Medicine (NLM), NIH) - Dec 03, 2018 Details

    This article collects the notable data changes made to MEDLINE during the National Library of Medicine (NLM) annual maintenance known as Year-End Processing (YEP) for 2019.



  • Another Drug Crisis: Methamphetamine Use By Pregnant Women - (National Public Radio (NPR)) - Dec 03, 2018 Details

    A study published Thursday in the American Journal of Public Health confirms the rise in meth use among pregnant women and provides new data illustrating the scope of the problem. The research, which analyzed hospital discharge records between 2004 and 2015, found that as opioid use among pregnant women has grown in recent years, so has their use of amphetamines, and particularly methamphetamine.



  • Eighth Annual Report to Congress on High-Priority Evidence Gaps for Clinical Preventive Services - (U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF)) - Nov 30, 2018 Details

    In this annual report, the USPSTF highlights seven recent topics related to cancer prevention and cardiovascular health, the leading causes of death among adults in the United States, for which more research is needed. The report also calls for more research in populations who are disproportionally affected by these conditions, yet often underrepresented in studies. Future research in these areas can help fill these gaps and could result in important new recommendations that will help to improve the health of Americans.


  • What is "Affordable" Health Care? A review of concepts to guide policymakers (November 2018) - (University of Pennsylvania, Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI)) - Nov 30, 2018 Details

    This brief considers affordability as an economic concept, as a kitchen-table budget issue for individuals and families, and as a threshold in current policy. It reviews a range of measures that capture the cost burden for individuals and families with different forms of coverage, in different financial circumstances, and with different health concerns.


  • High-Value Care: Strategies to Address Underuse - (Altarum Institute) - Nov 30, 2018 Details

    This brief reviews circumstances where high-value care is under-consumed and the strategies that can ensure patients receive proper levels of care, including provider incentives and consumer nudges.


  • Strategies to Address High Unit Prices: A Primer for States - (Altarum Institute) - Nov 30, 2018 Details

    This brief explores state options for controlling healthcare costs and notes that policy options vary in effectiveness depending on the presence (or absence) of competition between providers, prescription drug companies and device manufacturers.


  • Reducing Low-Value Care: Saving Money and Improving Health (November 2018) - (Altarum Institute) - Nov 30, 2018 Details

    Despite the multitude of studies on the dangers and costs of providing low- and no-value care to patients, our healthcare system still delivers low-value care services. To help address this source of waste and inefficiency, this brief defines low-value care, describes who is likely to receive this care, and identifies strategies to reduce it.


  • Suicide Mortality in the United States, 1999–2017 - (National Center for Health Statistics, CDC) - Nov 30, 2018 Details

    This data brief uses final mortality data from the National Vital Statistics System (NVSS) to update trends in suicide mortality from 1999 through 2017 and to describe differences by sex, age group, and urbanization level of the decedent’s county of residence.


  • Health Disparities Among American Indians/Alaska Natives — Arizona, 2017 - (Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR)) - Nov 30, 2018 Details

    Analysis of 2017 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System data from Arizona found significantly higher prevalences of sugar-sweetened beverage consumption, being overweight or having obesity, diabetes, hypertension, fair or poor health status, and leisure-time physical inactivity and a lower prevalence of having a personal doctor among AI/AN compared to whites.



  • Better Clinical Care for Obesity and Diet-Related Diseases Requires a Focus on Social Determinants of Health - (New England Journal of Medicine) - Nov 30, 2018 Details

    The complications of obesity and diet-related diseases challenge the traditional model of health care delivery, in which care primarily rests with physicians, nurses, and other health professionals. These conditions instead require health systems to restructure care delivery to consider underlying drivers, which have traditionally fallen to professionals outside of the health care delivery system. Key among these underlying drivers are the social determinants of health.




  • Suicide Surveillance Strategies for American Indian and Alaska Native Communities - (Suicide Prevention Resource Center) - Nov 29, 2018 Details

    This report summarizes findings and recommendations from SPRC’s exploration of suicide surveillance among American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) communities across the country. Each section describes challenges and provides strategies and resources to help AI/AN communities gather data on suicide to inform and evaluate their prevention efforts.


  • New interactive dashboard for Elder Index Demographic Data - (University of California Los Angeles (UCLA)) - Nov 29, 2018 Details

    Find 2011, 2013 and 2015 data on the percentage, number and demographic characteristics of seniors with incomes below the Elder Index in all 58 California counties using the new, free Elder Index Demographic Data online dashboard.



  • Nation’s Progress on Children’s Health Coverage Reverses Course - (Georgetown University, Health Policy Institute) - Nov 29, 2018 Details

    For the first time in nearly a decade, the number of uninsured children in the United States increased. Recently released data shows an estimated 276,000 more children were uninsured in 2017 than in 2016. No state (except for the District of Columbia) experienced a significant decline in the number of uninsured children in 2017.



  • HHS Announces Winners of Easy EHR Issue Reporting Challenge - (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)) - Nov 28, 2018 Details

    As part of ongoing efforts to improve the safe use of health information technology (health IT) and electronic health records (EHRs), HHS announced today the winners of the Easy EHR Issue Reporting Challenge. Winners of this challenge created software tools that could help clinicians report EHR usability and safety issues faster, more efficiently, and in alignment with their regular clinical workflow.


  • Effectuated Enrollment for the First Half of 2018 - (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), HHS) - Nov 28, 2018 Details

    This report provides average effectuated enrollment and premium data for the Federal and State-Based Exchanges for the first six months of the 2018 plan year.











  • California’s Health Coverage Gains to Erode Without Further State Action (November 2018) - (University of California Los Angeles (UCLA)) - Nov 27, 2018 Details

    Using the California Simulation of Insurance Markets (CalSIM) microsimulation model and a range of assumptions about the extent to which the penalty influences enrollment decisions, study projects that between 150,000 and 450,000 more Californians will be uninsured in 2020, growing to between 490,000 and 790,000 more uninsured in 2023, compared to the projected number if the ACA penalty had been maintained.


  • Can Analysis of Tweets Inform Interventions to Prevent Gender-Based Violence? - (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, MEASURE Evaluation) - Nov 21, 2018 Details

    Study explored the feasibility of using large social media datasets to track changes in attitudes on gender norms regarding sexual relationships between younger women and older men and attitudes on gender-based violence (GBV) against women and girls.











  • How Many Seniors Live in Poverty? - (Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF)) - Nov 19, 2018 Details

    This analysis provides current data on poverty rates among the 51.1 million older adults in the U.S., by age, gender, race/ethnicity, and health status and by state, as context for understanding the implications of potential changes to federal and state programs that help to bolster financial security among older adults.


  • Medicaid Managed Care: Additional CMS Actions Needed to Help Ensure Data Reliability - (U.S. Government Accountability Office) - Nov 19, 2018 Details

    In this report, GAO examined (1) states' oversight practices, and (2) CMS's actions for helping to ensure encounter data reliability. GAO reviewed documents on oversight practices, and interviewed Medicaid officials from eight states, selected based on enrollment and geography; and collected information from two MCOs (one with low and one with high enrollment) in each of the eight states.



  • Harnessing Mobile Devices for Nervous System Disorders: Proceedings of a Workshop - (National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM)) - Nov 19, 2018 Details

    Proceedings of a June 2018 workshop to explore current developments and opportunities for using mobile technology to advance research and treatment of central nervous system (CNS) disorders. The workshop also addressed key concerns that society will have to grapple with regarding digital technologies, including privacy and data ownership.



  • American Indians and Alaska Natives must be included in research on adverse childhood experiences - (Child Trends) - Nov 19, 2018 Details

    Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are an increasing area of interest among researchers, practitioners, and policymakers. As this field of study grows, an equity lens can facilitate a greater understanding of the structural, historic, and systemic contexts that relate to limited ACEs data for American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs), as well as disparate exposures to ACEs among this population. Three factors are important to consider in support of more equitable outcomes: AI/AN population characteristics, historical trauma and resilience, and tribal sovereignty.


  • Toward a Population Health Business Model: and How to Pay for It - (Build Healthy Places Network) - Nov 19, 2018 Details

    What are the mechanisms we can use to transition toward a population health business model? David Erickson, PhD, director of the Community Development Department at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, gave this speech at the Mayo Clinic Transform conference last month and goes over some of the opportunities he sees for how community development and health can partner and create change.


  • From Local Action to National Progress on 5 Major Health Challenges: The Bloomberg American Health Initiative - (Public Health Reports) - Nov 18, 2018 Details

    The articles in this supplemental issue of Public Health Reports provide insight into what it will take for the field of public health to tackle 5 of the most complex and difficult health problems of our time: (1) large numbers of adolescents disconnected from work and school; (2) violence (including gun violence), intimate partner and sexual violence, and suicide; (3) opioid addiction and overdose; (4) a dysfunctional food system associated with obesity; and (5) threats to the environment.


  • Rural-Urban Disparities in Health Care in Medicare (November 2018) - (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), HHS) - Nov 16, 2018 Details

    This report describes quality of health care received in 2017 by Medicare beneficiaries nationwide. Specifically, the report highlights rural-urban differences in health care experiences and clinical care and looks at how these differences vary by race and ethnicity.


  • Information on Medicare Telehealth (November 2018) - (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), HHS) - Nov 16, 2018 Details

    Report highlights the Medicare populations whose care may be improved by use of telehealth services, activities by CMS Innovation that increased access to telehealth services in test scenarios, the types of high-volume services that would be suitable for telehealth use, and barriers that could prevent expansion of telehealth services.