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HHS releases review of Healthy People 2010

Posted on October 7, 2011 | No Comments

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“Healthy People 2010 Final Review,” released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), is a progress assessment of the nation’s health goals over the last decade.  At a Health Affairs briefing in Washington D.C. just before the release of the Final Review, HHS’s Assistant Secretary for Health, Howard K. Koh, MD, MPH, said that the two principal health goals of the decade were 1) to increase the lifespan and quality of life of Americans, and 2) to reduce health disparities.  Secretary Koh reported that the Final Review data show that the first measure, but unfortunately not the second, was achieved.  While much progress has been made with regard to 71% of the program’s 2010 targets, the Healthy People Final Review does highlight several critical problem areas, including not only health disparities, but also the obesity rate in America.

For the full “Health People 2010 Final Review,” please refer to the CDC National Center for Health Statistics website.

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This post serves as an Implementation Update to our previous Implementation Brief on racial and ethnic disparities, originally posted April 15, 2010. The Update reflects changes made by HHS in their recently-released health survey standards.
The health reform law amends the Public Health Service Act by establishing an Epidemiology and Laboratory Capacity Grant Program to award grants to state, local, and tribal health departments, and academic centers that assist such agencies.
The health reform law establishes a dedicated “Prevention and Public Health Fund” to provide for “expanded and sustained national investment in prevention and public health programs.”
Requires federally conducted or supported health programs to collect and report data related to race, ethnicity, and other indicators sufficient to generate statistically reliable estimates of health disparities.
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The Internal Revenue Service has announced that providers working in underserved areas may be eligible for a refund on their 2009 taxes because the health reform law expanded the tax exclusion "to include any state loan repayment or loan forgiveness programs intended to increase the availability of health care services in underserved areas or health professional shortage areas."
The Commonwealth Fund debuted the "National Scorecard on U.S. Health System Performance, 2011" in a press briefing at the Kaiser Family Foundation on October 18, 2011. Cathy Schoen, the Senior Vice President for Research and Evaluation at Commonwealth, summarized the report, which updates a series of comprehensive assessments of U.S. population health and health care quality, access, efficiency, and equity. The report notes substantial improvement on several care quality indicators. However, the U.S. fell short on key measures as well. Across 42 performance indicators, the U.S. achieved a total score of 64 out of a possible 100, when comparing national rates with domestic and international benchmarks. Costs rose sharply, access to care declined, health system efficiency remained low, health disparities persisted, and heath outcomes also fell below target. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) targets many of the important gaps identified by the Commonwealth Scorecard.