Health Insurance Information Sources
Links to Other Web Sites
The NAIC provides links to third-party web sites as a convenience to its users. The information posted on our web site may include hypertext links or pointers to information created and maintained by other public and/or private organizations. The NAIC provides these links and pointers solely for our users’ information and convenience. The inclusion of any link does not imply an endorsement or recommendation of the third-party organization, its web site, or its products and services. The NAIC has not reviewed and is not responsible for the privacy practices or content of such web sites. Descriptions of these entities are their own descriptions of their purpose or mission/vision statement and are not opinions of the NAIC.
Please check back as more sources will be added on an ongoing basis.
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AcademyHealth is the professional home for health services researchers, policy analysts, and practitioners, and a leading, non-partisan resource for the best in health research and policy. Serving as a catalyst for collaboration across the health services research, policy, and practice arenas, AcademyHealth brings together a broad spectrum of players to share information, showcase important research, strengthen working relationships and advance the collective capacity to improve the cost, quality, and access to health care in the United States. AcademyHealth staff guide a range of programs and functions that include: policy analysis, knowledge transfer, technical assistance, educational programs and workshops, strategic planning and facilitation, health services research methods training, and grants management.
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
AHRQ is the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality—the Nation’s lead Federal agency for research on health care quality, costs, outcomes, and patient safety.
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) provides an array of intramural and extramural predoctoral and postdoctoral educational and career development grants and opportunities in health services research. In addition, the Agency supports the development of health services research infrastructure in emerging centers of excellence and works with Federal and academic partners to develop innovative curricula and educational models.
Alliance for Health Reform
America’s health care system is always a work in progress. Every year brings new challenges and new proposed solutions. Opinion leaders need an unbiased source of information so they can understand the roots of the nation’s health care problems and the trade-offs posed by competing proposals for change. The Alliance for Health Reform exists to provide that information. They offer a full array of resources and viewpoints, in a number of formats, to elected officials and their staffs, journalists, policy analysts and advocates. The Alliance believes that all in the U.S. should have access to health care and health coverage at a reasonable cost. Their board includes distinguished leaders from the fields of medicine, labor, consumer advocacy and public interest. Since 1991, the Alliance has organized more than 200 forums in Washington and around the nation, each presenting a balance menu of expert views.
Academy of Actuaries
The American Academy of Actuaries represents and unites U.S. actuaries from all practice areas. As the profession’s voice on public policy and professionalism issues, the Academy serves its members—and the public—in the following ways:
Public Health Association (APHA)
The American Public Health Association, the oldest and largest organization of public health professionals, represents more than 50,000 members from over 50 public health occupations. APHA has been influencing policies and setting priorities in public health for over 125 years. Throughout its history it has been in the forefront of numerous efforts to prevent disease and promote health.
Health Insurance Plans (AHIP)
Their mission is to be an effective advocate for a workable legislative and regulatory environment at the federal and state levels in which its members can advance their vision of a health care system that meets the needs of consumers, employers and public purchasers.
America’s Health Insurance Plans is a national association representing nearly 1,300 members providing health benefits to more than 200 million Americans. AHIP and its predecessor organizations have advocated on behalf of health insurance plans for more than six decades.
of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO)
The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) is the national nonprofit organization representing the state and territorial public health agencies of the United States, the U.S. Territories, and the District of Columbia. ASTHO’s members, the chief health officials of these jurisdictions, are dedicated to formulating and influencing sound public health policy, and to assuring excellence in state-based public health practice.
of Labor Statistics (BLS)
The Bureau of Labor Statistics is the principal fact-finding agency for the Federal Government in the broad field of labor economics and statistics. [More about the BLS Mission]
With the strongest commitment to integrity and objectivity, the BLS will be premier among statistical agencies, producing impartial, timely, and accurate data relevant to the needs of its users and to the social and economic conditions of our Nation, its workers, and their families.
for Studying Health System Change (HSC)
The mission of the Center for Studying Health System Change (HSC) is to inform health care decision makers about changes in the health care system at both the local and national levels and the effects of such changes on people. HSC seeks to provide objective, incisive analyses that lead to sound policy and management decisions, with the ultimate goal of improving the health of the American public.
for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is one of the 13 major operating components of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which is the principal agency in the United States government for protecting the health and safety of all Americans and for providing essential human services, especially for those people who are least able to help themselves.
Since it was founded in 1946 to help control malaria, CDC has remained at the forefront of public health efforts to prevent and control infectious and chronic diseases, injuries, workplace hazards, disabilities, and environmental health threats. Today, CDC is globally recognized for conducting research and investigations and for its action oriented approach. CDC applies research and findings to improve people’s daily lives and responds to health emergencies—something that distinguishes CDC from its peer agencies.
for Medicare & Medicaid Services
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is a Federal agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Programs for which CMS is responsible include Medicare, Medicaid, State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), HIPAA, and CLIA. To learn more about CMS, visit About CMS.
Changes in Health Care Financing and Organization (HCFO)
The Changes in Health Care Financing and Organization (HCFO) initiative, a program of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, supports investigator-initiated research and policy analysis, evaluation, and demonstration projects examining major changes in health care financing, and their effects on cost, access, or quality. We also conduct invitational working conferences and disseminate findings through research translation and communications activities.
HCFO strives to bridge the health policy and health services research communities by: 1) providing public and private decision makers with usable and timely information on health care policy, financing, and market developments, and 2) bringing together the policy and research communities through significant convening, issues identification, research translation, and communication activities. AcademyHealth provides overall direction and technical assistance for the program.
The Commonwealth Fund is a private foundation established in 1918 by Anna M. Harkness with the broad charge to enhance the common good. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting efforts that help people live healthy and productive lives, and by assisting specific groups with serious and neglected problems. The Fund supports independent research on health and social issues and makes grants to improve health care practice and policy.
The Fund’s two national program areas are improving health insurance coverage and access to care and improving the quality of health care services. The Fund is dedicated to helping people become more informed about their health care, and improving care for vulnerable populations such as children, elderly people, low-income families, minority Americans, and the uninsured. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries. In its own community, New York City, the Fund also makes grants to improve health care.
Today, 45 million Americans have no health insurance, including more than 8 million children. Eight out of 10 uninsured Americans either work or are in working families. Being uninsured means going without needed care. It means minor illnesses become major ones because care is delayed. Tragically, it also means that one significant medical expense can wipe out a family’s life savings.
The problem is getting worse. As the price of health care continues to rise, fewer individuals and families can afford to pay for coverage. Fewer small businesses are able to provide coverage for their employees, and those that do are struggling to hold on to the coverage they offer. It is a problem that affects all of us.
That’s why Americans came together for Cover the Uninsured Week 2005. From May 1- 8, individuals and organizations from every sector of society joined together to tell our leaders that health care coverage for all Americans must be their top priority. The Week mobilized thousands of business owners, union members, educators, students, patients, hospital staff, physicians, nurses, faith leaders and their congregants, and many others.
Research Initiative on the Uninsured
The Economic Research Initiative on the Uninsured (ERIU) at the University of Michigan is directed by health economist Catherine McLaughlin, Ph.D., and funded by the Princeton-based Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). ERIU seeks to initiate, commission, and disseminate original research to spark new discussions on health coverage issues.
FamiliesUSA is a national nonprofit, non-partisan organization dedicated to the achievement of high-quality, affordable health care for all Americans. Working at the national, state, and community levels, they have earned a national reputation as an effective voice for health care consumers for over 20 years.
Library for the Health Sciences
The Hardin Library for the Health Sciences serves the combined information and research needs of the Colleges of Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Public Health, the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics (including related allied-health education programs), and the Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology. The mission of the Hardin Library is to disseminate health sciences information to the students, faculty and staff of the University of Iowa in support of education, research, and health care, and to preserve the scholarly record for the future.
The Hardin Web site provides a wealth of information on electronic resources as well as access to library services such as online searching, reference, interlibrary loan, and on-campus document delivery.
Harvard Health Publications is a division of the Harvard Medical School. The goal of all of their publications is to bring the public, around the world, the most current practical, authoritative health information, drawing on the expertise of the 8,000 faculty physicians at the Harvard Medical School and its world-famous affiliated hospitals.
Working with partners in the publishing industry, Harvard Health Publications publishes information about health and wellness through all types of media: newsletters, books and their website (www.health.harvard.edu). Their mission is to be the world’s most widely recognized and trusted provider of high-quality information about health.
Healthinsuranceinfo.net is a project brought to you by Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute. Researchers at the Institute have created consumer guides in an effort to provide accurate, unbiased, understandable information to people seeking to get and keep health insurance. Since 1997, this project, which provides the general public with comprehensive consumer guides to health insurance for all 50 states, has been supported by several generous grants from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
Research & Educational Trust (HRET)
HRET’s goal is to advance ideas and practices beneficial to health care practitioners, institutions, consumers and society at large. Its principal activities focus on identifying, exploring, demonstrating and evaluating key strategic health care issues affecting innovative health care delivery systems, educating the field about the implications of changing health policies and developing strategies for community health improvement.
A resource that brings together valuable information from trusted sources on topics such as medications, health, diseases, supplements and natural medicine.
of Medicine of the National Academies
The nation turns to the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academies for science-based advice on matters of biomedical science, medicine, and health. A nonprofit organization specifically created for this purpose as well as an honorific membership organization, the IOM was chartered in 1970 as a component of the National Academy of Sciences. The Institute provides a vital service by working outside the framework of government to ensure scientifically informed analysis and independent guidance. The IOM’s mission is to serve as adviser to the nation to improve health. The Institute provides unbiased, evidence-based, and authoritative information and advice concerning health and science policy to policy-makers, professionals, leaders in every sector of society, and the public at large. More information on the IOM
Information Institute (I.I.I.)
The mission of the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) is to improve public understanding of insurance—what it does and how it works.
For more than 40 years, the I.I.I. has provided definitive insurance information. Today, the I.I.I. is recognized by the media, governments, regulatory organizations, universities and the public as a primary source of information, analysis and referral concerning insurance.
Each year, the I.I.I. works on more than 3,700 news stories, handles more than 6,000 requests for information and answers nearly 50,000 questions from consumers.
In addition to direct contact with the media, individuals and organizations, the I.I.I. publishes a host of helpful pamphlets and books ranging in subjects from 9 Ways to Lower Your Auto Insurance Costs to the I.I.I. Fact Book. The Institute does not lobby. Its central function is to provide accurate and timely information on insurance subjects.
The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF)
The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation is a non-profit, private operating foundation focusing on the major health care issues facing the nation. The Foundation is an independent voice and source of facts and analysis for policymakers, the media, the health care community, and the general public.
KFF develops and runs its own research and communications programs, often in partnership with outside organizations. The Foundation contracts with a wide range of outside individuals and organizations through its programs. Through their policy research and communications programs, they work to provide reliable information in a health system in which the issues are increasingly complex and the nation faces difficult challenges and choices. The Foundation is not associated with Kaiser Permanente or Kaiser Industries.
KidsHealth is the largest and most visited site on the Web providing doctor-approved health information about children from before birth through adolescence. Created by The Nemours Foundation’s Center for Children’s Health Media, the award-winning KidsHealth provides families with accurate, up-to-date, and jargon-free health information they can use.
The KidsHealth team of top-notch editors and medical reviewers develops a wide array of topics about medical, emotional, and developmental issues of children and their families. The content on KidsHealth is the equivalent of an 80-volume encyclopedia - and it’s growing every week.
KidsHealth has separate areas for kids, teens, and parents - each with its own design, age-appropriate content, and tone. There are literally thousands of in-depth features, articles, animations, games, and resources - all original and all developed by experts in the health of children and teens.
of the Family.net
provides information about 16,000
The Milbank Memorial Fund is an endowed operating foundation that engages in nonpartisan analysis, study, research, and communication on significant issues in health policy. Since 1905 the Fund has worked to improve and maintain health by encouraging persons who make and implement health policy to use the best available evidence. The Fund convenes meetings of leaders in the public and private sectors and publishes reports, books, and the Milbank Quarterly, a multidisciplinary journal of population health and health policy.
Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD)
The National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) represents the nation’s chief state health agency staff who have programmatic responsibility for administering AIDS health care, prevention, education and supportive service programs funded by state and federal governments. State AIDS Directors in all 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the U.S. Pacific Islands are represented by NASTAD with an office in Washington, DC. Programs administered by NASTAD members serve every population affected by and infected with HIV. As such, NASTAD has considerable expertise in identifying community needs and responding to the challenges of the HIV epidemic nationwide.
Association of Community Health Centers
To promote the provision of high quality, comprehensive health care that is accessible, coordinated, culturally and linguistically competent, and community directed for all underserved populations.
Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU)
The National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) is the premiere association for health insurance professionals. Founded in 1930, NAHU supports the private, free market health insurance system that serves the needs of over 180 million Americans. NAHU’s members are predominantly independent health insurance agents and brokers who meet with their clients to help them protect their most important asset, their health. As the direct contact with over 100 million insured Americans, NAHU’s members have a unique perspective on the state of the nation’s health care financing system, and understand most clearly how changes in health care policy can significantly affect their clients. For more information about NAHU, visit www.nahu.org.
Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC)
Headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is a voluntary organization of the chief insurance regulatory officials of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and U.S. territories. The association’s overriding objective is to assist state insurance regulators in protecting consumers and helping maintain the financial stability of the insurance industry by offering financial, actuarial, legal, computer, research, market conduct and economic expertise. Formed in 1871, it is the oldest association of state officials.
Association of State Comprehensive Health Insurance Plans
The National Association of State Comprehensive Health Insurance Plans (NASCHIP) was created in 1993 to provide educational opportunities and information for state high risk health insurance pools that have been, or are yet to be, established by state governments to serve the medically “uninsurable” population.
Association of State Medicaid Directors (NASMD)
The National Association of State Medicaid Directors (NASMD) is a bipartisan, professional, nonprofit organization of representatives of state Medicaid agencies (including the District of Columbia and the territories). Since 1979, NASMD has been affiliated with the American Public Human Services Association (APHSA). The primary purposes of NASMD are: to serve as a focal point of communication between the states and the federal government, and to provide an information network among the states on issues pertinent to the Medicaid program.
Center for Health Statistics
Center for Health Statistics provides a rich source of information about
America’s health. As the Nation’s principal health statistics
agency, they compile statistical information to guide actions and policies
to improve the health of our people. They are a unique public resource
for health information–
Coalition on Health Care
The National Coalition on Health Care is the nation’s largest and most broadly representative alliance working to improve America’s health care. The Coalition, which was founded in 1990 and is non-profit and rigorously non-partisan, is comprised of almost 100 organizations, employing or representing about 150 million Americans. Members are united in the belief that we need – and can achieve – better, more affordable health care for all Americans.
The Coalition brings together large and small businesses, the nation’s largest labor, consumer, religious and primary care provider groups, and the largest health and pension funds. Distinguished leaders from academia, business, and government have also pledged their support of the Coalition’s efforts. The Coalition’s Honorary Co-Chairmen are former Presidents George Bush, Gerald R. Ford, and Jimmy Carter, and its Co-Chairmen are former Governor Robert D. Ray (R-IA) and former Congressman Paul G. Rogers (D-FL). Its President is Henry E. Simmons, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.P.
Our health care system is changing rapidly, and not always for the better. Our nation faces three critical and interconnected problems: There are serious concerns about the quality of health care; costs continue to rise; and there is a large and increasing number of people without health insurance.
The National Coalition on Health Care’s diverse membership is united in support of the following principles as a framework for improving our nation’s health care:
Committee for Quality Assurance
Established in 1990, NCQA is a private, not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. NCQA accredits and certifies a wide range of health care organizations and recognizes physicians who provide high-quality care. The organization generates useful, understandable information about health care quality to help consumers and employers make informed health care decisions and to help physicians, health plans and others enhance the quality of patient care.
The organization oversees the evolution of the Health Plan Employer Data and Information Set (HEDIS®), the tool used by the health care industry to measure health plan performance. NCQA’s health plan accreditation programs are recognized as the most rigorous and meaningful in the industry. NCQA has been a leader in provider-level measurement through its Physician Recognition Programs, which are used in many of the nation’s largest pay-for-performance initiatives.
Promoting health and preventing disease is a priority of Governors across the nation. Expenditures on health care and health programs represent the second largest category of state spending - second only to education. Demographic changes, technological advances, emerging diseases, and the interplay between private and public sources of health coverage challenge the ability of states to respond to their citizens’ health care needs within the context of budget constraints.
The National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGAC) provides support to Governors in responding to the challenges of health services leadership through technical assistance, policy research, and by facilitating their participation in national discussion and initiatives. Center activities focus on the uninsured, aging and long-term care, Medicare and Medicaid, children’s health, and public health.
Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) is the federal agency responsible for conducting research and making recommendations for the prevention of work-related injury and illness. NIOSH is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the Department of Health and Human Services.
The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 created both NIOSH and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). OSHA is in the U.S. Department of Labor and is responsible for developing and enforcing workplace safety and health regulations. NIOSH is an agency established to help assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by providing research, information, education, and training in the field of occupational safety and health. NIOSH provides national and world leadership to prevent work-related illness, injury, disability, and death by gathering information, conducting scientific research, and translating the knowledge gained into products and services. NIOSH’s mission is critical to the health and safety of every American worker.
National Institutes of Health
Founded in 1887, the National Institutes of Health today is one of the world’s foremost medical research centers, and the Federal focal point for medical research in the United States. The NIH, comprising 27 separate Institutes and Centers, is one of eight health agencies of the Public Health Service which, in turn, is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Simply described, the goal of NIH research is to acquire new knowledge to help prevent, detect, diagnose, and treat disease and disability, from the rarest genetic disorder to the common cold. The NIH mission is to uncover new knowledge that will lead to better health for everyone. NIH works toward that mission by: conducting research in its own laboratories; supporting the research of non-Federal scientists in universities, medical schools, hospitals, and research institutions throughout the country and abroad; helping in the training of research investigators; and fostering communication of medical and health sciences information.
National Safety Council
To educate and influence society to adopt safety, health and environmental policies, practices and procedures that prevent and mitigate human suffering and economic losses arising from preventable causes.
Office of Personnel Management (OPM)
It is OPM’s job to build a high quality and diverse Federal workforce, based on merit system principles, that America needs to guarantee freedom, promote prosperity and ensure the security of this great Nation.
The Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program can help you meet your health care needs. Federal employees, retirees and their survivors enjoy the widest selection of health plans in the country. You can choose from among Fee-for-Service (FFS) plans, and their Preferred Provider Organizations (PPO), or Plans offering a Point of Service (POS) Product, or Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO) if you live (or sometimes if you work) within the area serviced by the plan.
Wood Johnson Foundation
Established in 1972, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, based in Princeton, N.J. is the largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to health and health care in the United States. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation seeks to improve the health and health care of all Americans.
State Coverage Initiatives (SCI)
The State Coverage Initiatives (SCI) program is a national initiative of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation that works with states to plan, execute, and maintain health insurance expansions, as well as to improve the availability and affordability of health care coverage. The program was launched in 1999 and re-authorized in 2002 for two years. AcademyHealth serves as the national program office for SCI.
SCI’s team of policy experts works with states to help them expand coverage to working families, build on employer-based health insurance, and foster collaboration among stakeholders. SCI tailors their approach to state decision-makers’ needs and helps create coverage solutions within the context of each state’s unique fiscal and political environment.
any state ready to make a significant step forward in expanding coverage—whether
the state is a long way down that path or just getting started.”
Health Facts Online
This resource contains the latest state-level data on demographics, health, and health policy, including health coverage, access, financing, and state legislation.
Statehealthfacts.org is a project of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation and is designed to provide free, up-to-date, and easy-to-use health data on all 50 states. Statehealthfacts.org provides data on more than 450 health topics and is linked to both the Kaiser Family Foundation website (www.kff.org) and KaiserNetwork.org (www.kaisernetwork.org).
StatePublicHealth.org is a product of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) and ASTHO affiliates. It is designed to facilitate the dissemination of basic state-based public health information.
The chief health official in a state’s health department holds one of the most demanding positions in government. Health officials are responsible for ensuring that the public health system is effective in a rapidly changing health care and political environment. To succeed, state health officials need expertise in policymaking and the political system, as well as scientific knowledge of public health. To assist state health officials in becoming administrators, policymakers, and protectors of the public’s health, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation supports the State Health Leadership Initiative.
Statistical Abstract of the United States
The National Data Book contains a collection of statistics on social and economic conditions in the United States. Selected international data are also included. The Abstract is also your Guide to Sources of other data from the Census Bureau, other Federal agencies, and private organizations.
The Census Bureau serves as the leading source of quality data about the nation’s people and economy. They honor privacy, protect confidentiality, share their expertise globally, and conduct their work openly. They are guided on this mission by their strong and capable workforce, their readiness to innovate, and their abiding commitment to their customers.
of Health & Human Services
The Department of Health and Human Services is the United States government’s principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves.
The World Health Organization is the United Nations specialized agency for health. It was established on April 7, 1948. WHO’s objective, as set out in its Constitution, is the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health. Health is defined in WHO’s Constitution as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
WHO is governed by 192 Member States through the World Health Assembly. The Health Assembly is composed of representatives from WHO’s Member States. The main tasks of the World Health Assembly are to approve the WHO programme and the budget for the following biennium and to decide major policy questions.
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