State Models for Health Care Cost Measurement: A Policy and Operational Framework

Focus Area:
Sustainable Health Care Costs

Dollars spent on health care are dollars not available for other uses. Understanding the rate at which costs are growing—and the growth rate the economy can bear—is important for the financial health of any state. This report looks at total cost of care measurement activities in four states and the policy priorities in each state that are driving the activity. It examines the questions these states had to ask and in determining total cost of care measurement—where data comes from, what to count, how to count—and how they answered them.

This report was prepared at the request of the states doing this work so that they could document and compare each other’s approach. The pioneering strategies to limit the rate of health care cost growth—and to measure each state’s performance—merit the attention of other states, policymakers, and observers.