MILBANK NEWS

Addressing High-Cost Pharmaceutical Drugs

June 24, 2016

As the end of the month approaches, so does the end of phase one of SMART-D, the State Medicaid Alternative Reimbursement and Purchasing Test for High-Cost Drugs. A project of the Center for Evidence-based Policy (CEbP) at Oregon Health and Science University, SMART-D is part of a series of grants from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation in Houston, Texas, that address the rising cost of pharmaceutical drugs. SMART-D is aimed at developing a better menu of options for states to consider in purchasing high-cost drugs in Medicaid.

 

REPORT: How Can States Support an Aging Population? Actions Policymakers Can Take

June 8, 2016

It is projected that by 2050, 83.7 million Americans will be over the age of 65, almost double the number who were that age in 2012. During its fall 2015 meetings, the Milbank Memorial Fund’s Reforming States Group turned its attention to the topic, partnering with The New York Academy of Medicine to develop sessions focused on some of the major challenges and opportunities facing states as they look at ways to support an aging population.

The new report, “How Can States Support an Aging Population? Actions Policymakers Can Take,” by Lindsay Goldman and Robert Wolf of the New York Academy of Medicine, provides a review of the issues discussed at the meetings, as well as recommendations for state policy interventions.

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REPORT: Investing in Social Services for States' Health: Identifying and Overcoming the Barriers

May 20, 2016

More and more attention is being paid to the social determinants of health—the conditions in which people are born, grow, work, live, and age, including factors such as income support, education, transportation, and housing—and their contribution to health and well-being. Despite all the evidence about how the factors affecting our health dwarf the impact of the health care we receive, it remains a challenge for state leaders to act. Why don’t state budgets reflect what we know about improving the health of populations? What are examples where, in spite of the barriers, these challenges are being overcome?

This report, written by Elizabeth Bradley, faculty director of the Yale Global Health Leadership Institute, and Erika Rogan, attempts to answer these questions. Based on focused discussions with state and local public health sector leaders, the report identifies the root causes for states not making overall budget and policy decisions that optimize their population’s health.

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