Health Care Costs

Health care costs can be defined in three ways: 1) the expense incurred by providers in the delivery of health care services 2) the amount that is paid for services rendered by private and public payers; and 3) out-of-pocket patient spending for health care services.

Upcoming Events

No upcoming events for this topic. See past events below.

Past Events

January 24, 2024

This event featured an analysis of potential health policy priorities at both state and federal levels for this upcoming election year, and provided a review of major legislative milestones from 2023 and their potential implications for 2024.

September 13, 2023

As the health care system grapples with unprecedented challenges post-pandemic – from workforce to supply chain shortages, from technological advances to continued health inequities and affordability challenges – will the future of the health care system meet the needs of real people and communities? When “people” become “patients,” what happens? And what do health policy leaders need to know to put people first?

April 14, 2023

This panel provided a high-level overview of health care coverage programs in the United States, such as Medicare, Medicaid, the Affordable Care Act, and employer-based insurance, as well as recent changes to coverage such as bolstering subsidies. This Session:

November 30, 2022

The November 8 midterm elections have reshaped the contours of federal health policymaking for the remainder of President Biden’s current term. While Democrats outperformed expectations retaining control of the Senate—with the potential of adding a seat—and limiting their losses in the House, Republicans have gained a majority in the House. As a result, avenues for […]

October 19, 2022

Over the last few decades, horizontal and vertical consolidation within health care markets has become a pressing issue – with competing market forces driving this dynamic. Horizontal consolidation occurs when two providers performing similar functions merge – such as when two hospitals merge or groups of physician practices merge to form larger group practices. For […]

January 21, 2022

This event was Part II of the Alliance’s Health Policy Roundup and 2022 Forecast series. Economic fallout and higher unemployment rates due to the pandemic have raised concerns about health insurance coverage enrollment and affordability in the U.S. Although the national uninsured rate remained mostly unchanged throughout the pandemic (at or around 10–11%), many eligible […]

September 15, 2021

Conversations around health equity and social determinants of health have received heightened attention and are continuously evolving within the health policy community. The COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with eye-opening events that garnered international attention, has been one of the health policy community’s greatest teachers, putting equity and health justice at top of mind and accelerating multi-sectoral […]

August 31, 2021

Download an overview of this event for easy sharing » Medicare payment reform aims to increase quality health care for Medicare beneficiaries and improve the program’s financial sustainability. This briefing provided background on Medicare payment reform, including new value-based models that have evolved over the past decade. Panelists provided a landscape overview of the most promising […]

April 21, 2021

Download an overview of this event for easy sharing » There is no shortage of proposed solutions to reduce health care costs and expand coverage in the U.S. However, central to many policy options is the concept of increased market competition and/or increased regulation of health care insurance markets. In other U.S. markets, competition is a […]

Toolkits

A Reporter’s Toolkit: Health Care Costs

This toolkit will help you understand trends in U.S. health spending, and some of the reasons why spending is going up. We also cover some ideas for restraining health care costs. In addition, this resource offers story ideas, selected experts with contact information, selected websites, and a glossary. This toolkit was compiled and written by […]

The Sustainable Growth Rate: Seeking a ‘Doc Fix’

The public is keeping a close eye on federal budget deficit reduction efforts this year, including potential automatic spending cuts initially mandated by the Budget Control Act of 2011. Yet one component of the debate has been largely ignored – the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR). Indeed, because of the SGR, physicians in January 2013 faced […]

Health Care Consolidation

The pace of health care consolidation is accelerating. Over half of hospitals were exploring a possible merger in 2013, and half were also planning to purchase physician practices. The dollar value of those acquisitions declined, however, as recent purchases have been less about megamergers and more about smaller entities as the newer targets of acquisition.

Replacing the SGR

With the cost of repealing the Sustainable Growth Rate for Medicare Physician Payment lower than ever, many suggest that 2014 is the year that permanent change may finally be realized. This toolkit provides a brief summary of the history of the SGR, including the recent actions by the House Energy and Commerce, House Ways and […]

Biosimilars Toolkit: Unpacking Complex Issues

The Alliance for Health Reform has released a new toolkit, “Biosimilars: Unpacking Complex Issues.” The Affordable Care Act created an expedited licensure pathway for biosimilars, and, in March 2015, the U.S. approved the first biosimilar, leaving policy makers, regulators, providers and stakeholders to grapple with regulatory and financial questions.

Health Policy Roundup: State Policy Analysis

While significant attention has been paid to shifts in federal health policy, it is equally important to understand the promises, tradeoffs, and impacts of state policies on the health care system.

Sourcebook Chapters

The drivers of health care costs, federal spending, consumer spending, and industry consolidation.

Policymakers

Members of Congress, Congressional and agency staff, federal, state, and local legislators.

Health Care Stakeholders

Industry stakeholders, practitioners and providers, patient advocates, community organizations, academics.

Media

Members of the press, journalists, public relations professionals.