Trending at the Commonwealth Fund: Containing Healthcare Costs

It might be easy to overlook, but it’s doing important work. Based in Washington, D.C., and New York City, the nearly century-old Commonwealth Fund has long been a broad supporter of a variety of public health and policy initiatives. Generally, it follows along with the healthcare trends that lead the nation, so naturally its big programs of the moment involve healthcare reform, Medicare and Medicaid, safety net providers, long term and end-of-life care, vulnerable populations, and reducing healthcare costs.

With that last one in mind, it’s easy to run down Commonwealth’s list of recent grants and see a clearly directed interest, especially in leading and supporting consortia that brainstorm new ways to contain healthcare costs and examine high-performing healthcare plans that succeed:

  • $441,681 to the President and Fellows of Harvard College, to help identify the factors linking high-cost Medicare beneficiaries and find out what components of care may be preventable.
  • $161,841 to Wake Forest University Health Services, to study the Affordable Care Act’s impact on health insurance premiums across states.
  • $462,731 to the Center for Health Care Strategies, Inc., to support Promoting Integrated Care for Dual Eligibles (PRIDE), a team-based initiative linking seven high-performing health plans and their strategies for cost containment.

The grants might not be enormous, but they’re certainly substantial, and given that the Commonwealth Fund doesn’t discriminate against upstart new initiatives, all this is very good news for anyone seeking funding to study healthcare costs.