Briefs & Reports

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Awards HMA Research Grant

Health Management Associates (HMA) has been selected as one of only 10 institutions nationwide to be awarded a grant from the State Health Access Reform Evaluation (SHARE), a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). These grants fund research that will provide timely insights into a variety of health reform issues, including those related to the coverage provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

The research to be undertaken at HMA will be titled “Making ACA Coverage a Reality – A National Examination of Provider Network Monitoring Practices by States and Health Plans” and led by Principal Karen Brodsky.

First funded by RWJF in 2007, SHARE provides information on the impact of coverage expansion efforts and timely guidance about how to effectively implement health reforms. The key goals of the program are to develop a coordinated approach to the study of health reform issues from a state perspective, and to produce and disseminate informative, user-friendly findings for state and federal policy-makers and agencies. To facilitate these goals, SHARE aims to partner policy-makers with researchers to ensure that state needs inform research from the outset, maximizing its utility.  

This newest group of SHARE grants marks the fourth round of SHARE-funded research.

“States are in the midst of implementing most of the major provisions of the ACA, including the expansion of Medicaid and the launch of the health insurance Marketplaces,” said Lynn Blewett, PhD, director of SHARE, in an Oct. 15 news release. “Even in those states making the most rapid progress, there is still considerable work to be done. The funding of these grants will allow us to provide states with something much-needed—practical, easily-applicable lessons about what work in expanding health insurance access and coverage.” 

Technical support for the grantees’ work will be provided by the State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC), an RWJF-funded research center in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota, out of which SHARE operates.  

“State officials and others working to implement the health reform law are grappling with the full extent of the law’s effect—not just on Medicaid expansion and hospital utilization, but also on pent-up demand for care, consumer choice, employer-offered coverage, and more,” said Katherine Hempstead, who directs coverage issues at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. “The scope of the Affordable Care Act reaches all corners of the U.S. health care system, and the projects funded through SHARE will help patients, providers and state officials navigate the new health care landscape.”

For more information about SHARE and its grantees, visit www.shadac.org/share.