Information Needs Associated with the Changing Organization and Delivery of Health Care: Summary of Perceptions, Activities, Key Gaps, and Priorities. I. Introduction, Objectives, and Methods



  • The speed and breadth of change in the health care system, along with budgetary constraints and concerns, generates intense interest in the health care system. Answers to the many questions being raised will require information on new and existing system components, the changing relationships among them, and the effects of the changes on the health care system and individuals.
  • HHS historically has devoted fewer resources to collecting information on health insurance plans and providers--the “supply” side of the system--than it has devoted to population-based information--the “demand” side. As the health system evolves, the demand for information on the “supply” side is growing and widening, with a variety of public and private stakeholders needing information to support diverse operational concerns.
  • This project seeks to support the Department of Health and Human Services in identifying key information gaps created by the evolving health care system and in assessing strategic actions to address them.
  • The report synthesizes information obtained through a two stage process. In the first stage, we reviewed the literature and contacted more than 50 individuals by telephone to discuss their perceptions of health system change. Our discussions focused on information needs and data gaps that health system change has created, along with any activities to fill these gaps. Contacts included representatives of major national associations, providers, insurers, and health plans; state officials; foundation staff; and researchers and policy analysts. We identified 23 efforts to respond to information gaps. In the second stage, we collected comprehensive information on 11 of the 23 efforts.

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