is a nonpartisan, nonprofit professional organization dedicated to advancing the fields ofhealth services researchand health policy. It is a professional organization for health services researchers, health policy analysts, and health practitioners, and it is a nonpartisan source for health research and policy. The organization was founded in 2000, in a merger between theAs of 2008, the organization boasts a membership of approximately 4000 health services researchers.

The organizations first president, W. David Helms, was founder and director of the Alpha Center from 19762000.3Helms left the organization in December 2010.

The organizations current president, Lisa Simpson, assumed the role in January 2011.

Changes in Health Care Financing and Organization (HCFO)

Improving Hispanic Elders Health: Community Partnerships for Evidence-Based Solutions

International Exchange for Health Care Policy and Research

Building Bridges: Making a Difference in Long-Term Care

AcademyHealth was established in June 2000, following a merger between the Alpha Center and the Association for Health Services Research (AHSR); the two organizations had been operating under a joint operation agreement since January 19994

Founded in March 1976 and based in Washington, D.C., the Alpha Center functioned as a health policy resource center, assist[ing] public and private sector leaders in meeting health care challenges by providing research analysis, facilitation, education and training, strategic planning, and program management.5

The Association for Health Services Research was formed in 1981 as the first professional organization for health services researchers.6It functioned as a non-profit professional society for individuals and organizations with a commitment to health services research. AHSRs mission included educating consumers and policymakers about the importance of health services research, disseminating information generated by health services researchers, securing funding for the field, and providing networking and professional development opportunities.7

Since the merger, AcademyHealth has assumed the duties of both parent organizations.

AcademyHealth manages several programs that serve the health services and policy communities.

Funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, theHCFOprogram seeks to bridge the health services research and health policy communities and to provide public and private decision makers with usable information on health care policy, financing, and organization.8AcademyHealth serves as the HCFO programs National Program Office. Established in 1988 as the successor to RWJs Program for Demonstration and Research on Health Care Costs, HCFO has since funded more than 265 projects on the effects of financing on cost, access, organization, and quality. The program has used meetings and conferences, newsletters, briefs, special papers, as well as peer-reviewed journal articles to facilitate the dissemination of its findings to policymakers.9

In their evaluation conducted under the Barents Group, Kathryn Langwell and James Monroe state that HCFO represents a stable source of funding for health financing and organizational research which, given the federal budget deficit and current uncertainties, is a very important niche from the perspective of the research community.10

The AcademyHealth HSR Methods Web site was designed to help researchers or research users cross-walk the language, study designs, and methods used by researchers in the variety of fields contributing to health services research.

AcademyHealth established a distinguished Methods Council, chaired by Bryan Dowd of the University of Minnesota, to oversee the process. The Council is composed of 25 members that represent leaders in a range of different disciplines and research methodologies.11

HSRProjis a free database containing more than 6,000 descriptions of ongoing health services research projects funded by government and state agencies, foundations, and private organizations.12

A Health and Human Services pilot initiative aimed at improving the health and quality of life for Hispanic senior citizens,13AcademyHealth serves as the contractor for this project, titledImproving Hispanic Elders Health: Community Partnerships for Evidence-Based Solutions. It is designed to encourage Hispanic elders and their families to take advantage of new Medicare benefits, including prescription drug coverage, flu shots, diabetes screening and self-management, cardiovascular screening, cancer screening services and smoking cessation programs.14

TheInternational Exchange for Health Care Policy and Researchprogram manages and focuses on health issues of a global nature. It has played an active role in convening a group to develop guidelines for foreign nurse recruiting.15

Under contract to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Qualitys (AHRQ)Knowledge TransferProgram, AcademyHealth works with health care providers, purchasers, health plans, and state and local government leaders to help them understand and apply health services research findings in their decision-making.

Funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation,16and administered by AcademyHealth,SCIworks with state policy leaders to develop strategies to improve insurance coverage.17SCI also produces the annual report,State of the States,providing a national perspective on state-based reform efforts.18

AcademyHealth hosts a number of conferences and seminars to address critical issues in health services research. The meetings provide opportunities for the presentation of research, debates on policy issues, and instruction in new methodologies.19

A three-day conference, the ARM is a forum for health services researchers to present their work. The conference attracts both individual and corporate researchers.20Once an intimate conference with only 300 attendees, the ARM has grown to host over 2,200 participants,21and rotates between Washington, DC, Boston, Orlando, San Diego, Seattle, and Chicago.22

A two-day conference, the NHPC examines the United States health policy agenda for the upcoming year.23Past speakers have included advisers to presidential candidates Senators Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.), Barack Obama (D-Ill.), and John McCain (R-Ariz.) House Democratic Leadership;24AHRQ Director Carolyn Clancy, MD; Engelberg Center Director Mark McClellan, MD, PhD; Congressional Budget Office Peter Orszag; and Commonwealth Fund President Karen Davis.25

A joint strategic initiative between AcademyHealth and The Commonwealth Fund, Building Bridges provides an opportunity for long-term care stakeholders to exchange information, debate the issues, seek solutions, and identify where additional research is needed.

The initiative seeks to foster development of a network of long-term care researchers, policy leaders, providers, consumer representatives, and funders through a series of annual colloquia and ongoing workgroup discussions among conference participants and others.26

The HSR Summit Series is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Kellogg Foundation. It consists of three summits, the first of which was held in November 2007, and focused on the health workforce. Each summit commissions background papers, convenes invited stakeholders to discuss the papers and develop recommendations, and disseminates these recommendations to critical audiences. The second summit will focus on methods and data, and the third summit will focus on knowledge transfer.27

. Published by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. 2008.

. Business and Health; States Weighing Cost-Control Ideas. August 4, 1992.

. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Winter, 1998.

US Newswire. Alpha Center Studies Incentive-based Purchasing in Medicaid Managed Care. August 24, 1999.

. Published by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. 2008.

. Published by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. 2008.

Barents Group. Evaluation of the Robert Wood Johnsons Health Care Financing and Organization Initiative (HCFO). 1996.

US Fed News. HHS launches initiative to improve the health of Hispanic elders. June 14, 2007.

Freyer, Felice J. The Providence Journal. International care: R.I.s hospitals look abroad for nurses. January 26, 2008

Larkin, Howard. States on Stage. Trustee. November, 2007.

Abram, Susan. LA Daily News. Candidates look to state as debate grows about proposals for universal coverage and industry reform. February 3, 2008.

AP Newswire. Associated Press, Aberdeen American News (SD). High percentage of young adults are uninsured. April 13, 2008

Business Wire. Effectiveness of InfoMedics Patient Feedback Programs Demonstrated at Two Health Care Industry Events. June 7, 2007.

Archived copy. Archived fromthe originalon February 25, 2009

Crosby, John. AcademyHealth National Health Policy Conference. AOA Daily Report. February 7, 2008.

AOA Daily Report. AcademyHealth National Health Policy Conference. February 7, 2008

Medical and health organizations based in Washington, D.C.

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