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Academy Study On Medicare Restructuring For The Next Decade Receives $1.2 Million Grant

For Immediate Release:
December 27, 1999

Contact: Jill Braunstein or Michael Gluck at (202) 452-8097


NASI to Convene Three Expert Panels, Enhance Dissemination Effort
WASHINGTON, DC – The National Academy of Social Insurance (NASI) has been awarded a two-year, $1.2 million grant from The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to continue its efforts to provide timely, non-partisan analysis of Medicare policy for the long-term.

Over the next two years, NASI will convene three new expert panels to examine:

  1. Issues of governance and administration in a restructured Medicare program, including proposals to turn responsibility for managing the program over to an independent board (as has been proposed in draft legislation);

  2. Medicare policies affecting the growing number of beneficiaries with chronic health problems; and

  3. How Medicare will work in an evolving system of local and regional health care markets.

The new grant continues the Academy's on-going Restructuring Medicare for the Long –Term project. For over four years, with the support of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and other private foundations, the project has convened four study panels of philosophically and otherwise diverse experts to grapple with the economic, political, and social issues involved in restructuring Medicare. A nonpartisan Medicare Steering Committee, chaired by Robert D. Reischauer, Senior Fellow at the Brooking Institution, directed this work.

“Support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation allows the project to continue to explore some of the most important questions raised by our study panels. Each of the panels has discussed how reforms could help preserve Medicare as an adequate national social insurance program. The panels have also identified specific questions that need to be addressed regarding the implementation of reforms in the fee-for-service program, and more far-reaching restructuring that would involve structured competition among health plans,” said Reischauer. “This project will help ensure that policymakers have available an open and fair assessment of what reforms will mean for beneficiaries, providers, and taxpayers,” he continued.

In addition to producing new analysis, the grant will enhance NASI's ability to disseminate the findings to policymakers and journalists in a useable, timely fashion, including expanded use of internet resources. Among other activities, NASI will examine how journalists and policymakers use web resources on Medicare and make changes to its dissemination program to meet those needs.

Academy President Larry Thompson said, “These funds will help meet the continuing need for credible analysis of Medicare restructuring as we move into the next decade. We are pleased to have the on-going support of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.” Michael Gluck, Ph.D., Director of Health Policy Studies at NASI and Jill Bernstein, Ph.D., Senior Research Associate at NASI are co-principal investigators for the project.

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