About the Project

The Health System Measurement Project tracks government data on critical U.S. health system indicators. The website presents national trend data as well as detailed views broken out by population characteristics such as age, sex, income level, and insurance coverage status.

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Access to health care improves health status and quality of life.  Today, however, many Americans have inadequate access to care.  This dashboard tracks changes in access to care.

The cost of health care should be affordable to American families, businesses, and taxpayers.  This dashboard reports on trends in health care costs and on the efficiency and competitiveness of the delivery system. 

Health insurance coverage gives Americans and their health providers protection against the financial risk associated with the costs of health care.  This dashboard tracks measures related to insurance coverage and the financial protection it provides.

Access to health services and the quality of those services are closely linked to supply of trained health care providers. Training and retaining primary care providers is particularly important. This dashboard tracks key workforce measures including access to health care providers and the number of primary care providers. 

Health information technology allows health care providers to better manage patient care through the secure use and sharing of health information.  This dashboard tracks the use of electronic prescribing and the adoption of electronic health records by physicians and hospitals.

Innovation, knowledge development, and continuous improvement should be fundamental to the U.S. health care system.  This dashboard tracks a set of short, intermediate, and long-term indicators that reflect new ideas, processes, and technologies for improving health outcomes. 

The health system should help Americans live longer, healthier lives.  Health risk behaviors are a critical factor in determining people’s health.  This dashboard includes measures of population health outcomes and of critical health risk behaviors.

Prevention is often the most effective way to improve health and control health care costs.  This dashboard tracks preventive interventions that address some of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in the United States.

Americans' health care should be safe, coordinated, evidence-based, responsive to patient preferences, and continuously improving.  This dashboard includes measures that capture multiple dimensions of quality, including outpatient care, inpatient care, and nursing facilities.

Disparities in health care access and outcomes are widespread.  This dashboard tracks measures associated with health disparities.

As of June 2012, over 3 million young adults had gained insurance coverage through the Affordable Care Act provision that extends dependent coverage up to age 26. Young adults have historically been more likely than other groups to lose their health insurance as they move between school and employment or change jobs.
Medicare beneficiaries’ out-of-pocket drug costs have been declining since 2005, when the introduction of Medicare Part D (passed in 2003 and implemented in 2006) provided beneficiaries with access to a prescription drug benefit.  The design of most Part D plans, however, left beneficiaries with a coverage gap, known as the “donut hole.”  The Affordable Care Act gradually closes this coverage gap, reducing the size of the donut hole beginning in 2012 until the gap is completely eliminated in 2020.
Small businesses pay about 18 percent more than large businesses for the same health insurance policy. [1] The higher cost of coverage for contributes to the lower offer rate in small firms. Under the Affordable Care Act, businesses with fewer than 25 employees may qualify for a tax credit to offset health insurance costs.
Electronic health records (EHR) reduce paperwork and medical errors, and can improve health care efficiency and safety.[2-4] Sophisticated EHR systems that include clinical decision support alerts and reminders can decrease utilization by reducing adverse drug events, offering alternatives to expensive medications, and reducing the use of laboratory and radiology tests. [5] EHR adoption by office-based physicians has steadily increased over the last several years. The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, allocated $19 billion to providers to enable the establishment and meaningful use of EHR.