Transforming Health Care Through Evidence and Collaboration
Transforming Health Care Through Evidence and Collaboration
The NIHCM Foundation is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to improving the effectiveness, efficiency and quality of America's health care system.
  • Awards

    NIHCM Foundation is pleased to welcome Dr. Karen DeSalvo, Dr. Aaron E. Carroll and Eliza Barclay to the independent judges panel of the NIHCM Awards. All three bring considerable expertise to the prestigious panel.

    Press Release Judges Panels The NIHCM Awards
  • Data Insights

    Mental illness has become more common over the last decade, particularly among 18- to 25-year-olds. This Data Insights looks at trends in mental health and their implications for the future.

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  • Briefing

    NIHCM Foundation led a briefing on Capitol Hill to discuss social determinants of health and the opioid crisis with Founding President and CEO Nancy Chockley, former CMS Administrator Don Berwick, Curtis Barnett of Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield, Craig Samitt of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, and Grant Baldwin from the CDC.

    Press Release Watch the Video
  • Data Insights

    As urbanization increases, an older, sicker and poorer population remains in rural America. Despite the health care challenges posed by these changes, promising initiatives can improve rural health.

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  • Advisory Board

    NIHCM Foundation is pleased to welcome Dr. Scott Gottlieb, Sherry Glied, PhD, and Katherine Baicker, PhD, to its distinguished Advisory Board. Their ideas and insights will advance NIHCM's mission to improve health care for millions of Americans.

    Press Release Advisory Board
  • News

    NIHCM welcomed Secretary Azar to a meeting in March to discuss efforts by the Department of Health and Human Services to transform health care by lowering costs and improving value for patients.

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Events

January 27, 2020
SDOH-webinar-graphic-012720

This webinar will explore public and private sector efforts to improve health outcomes by addressing social determinants of health.

December 19, 2019
shutterstock_560761723_1

Part of the Beyond the Beltway: Health Policy Webinars for Journalists series, this rapid response webinar explained the December 18th ruling from the Fifth Circuit on the Affordable Care Act.

Watch the Recording

In the News

January 2020
Population Health Spotlight
newsletter-loneliness-kas_10

Reducing Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome in Tennessee

Rising prescription painkiller abuse and the simultaneous increase in heroin dependence have led to an alarming growth in the number of infants born with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) since 2000.1 These infants can suffer intense withdrawal symptoms, including vomiting, weight loss, hypersensitivity to light and sound, and seizures, and are often admitted to neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). Average hospital charges for infants born with NAS are five times higher than those for non-NAS hospital births, and the total hospital charges associated with caring for these babies has nearly doubled from $732 million in 2009 to $1.5 billion in 2012, with 80 percent of charges paid by Medicaid (Figure 1).2

There is significant geographic variation in the incidence of NAS, with the highest rates concentrated in the East South Central region of the country.3 In Tennessee (TN) incidence of NAS has increased sixteen-fold since 2000,4 far exceeding the five-fold national increase.5 In 2014, there were 973 reported cases of NAS in TN, with 60 percent of the cases concentrated in East Tennessee.6 BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation (THF), recognizing the increasing incidence of NAS and its associated cost, committed to improve access to substance abuse services for pregnant women and new mothers struggling with opiate addiction and access to treatment for NAS babies. This fact sheet highlights several of THF’s partnerships to address the NAS epidemic.

Mothers and Infants Sober Together

The town of Jellico in East Tennessee has the highest rate of NAS births in the state. It has very few health care providers and only one prenatal provider. This sole provider of prenatal care illustrates the region’s NAS epidemic and its ties to opiate addiction: out of the 2,034 female patients that he saw with opioid prescriptions in 2013, nearly 50 percent were women of childbearing age.

To address this problem and increase access to substance abuse services for pregnant women, THF provided a two-year grant in 2013 for an expansion of the Mothers and Infants Sober Together (MIST) at Jellico Community Hospital, in conjunction with Ridgeview Behavioral Health Center, Dayspring Family Health Center and the local health department.

MIST is designed to assist mothers with substance abuse problems and ensure a drug-free and safe home for their newborns. Mothers qualify for the MIST program through a referral from a prenatal care provider and are assigned a program team consisting of a case manager, counselor and program coordinator. Women can participate in the six-month long program anytime during their pregnancy through one-year postpartum.

At the end of the THF grant in 2015, MIST staff reflected that the program had been well received in the community and had allowed for the creation of strong partnerships with other community programs and referring agencies. While it was difficult to engage pregnant women in the program, the women who did participate reported they gained support for their recovery process through the weekly support group and the interaction with providers. THF shared that one of the barriers encountered was a lack of access to inpatient detoxification (detox) treatment services for those women in need of support beyond what was offered through the MIST program. THF is now supporting a new program focused on inpatient treatment options for women of childbearing age battling opiate addiction and research on the effectiveness of these treatment options.

Services Provided Through MIST Include:

  • Home visits
  • Mental health counseling
  • Weekly support groups
  • Individual therapy
  • Substance abuse treatment
  • Relapse prevention
  • Parenting education
  • Supervised visits for mothers without custody of their children
  • Case Management

Source: MIST: Mothers and Infants Sober Together (2015). Rural Assistance Center. Retrieved from  https://www.raconline.org/success/progect-examples/380

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Events

January 27, 2020
SDOH-webinar-graphic-012720

This webinar will explore public and private sector efforts to improve health outcomes by addressing social determinants of health.

December 19, 2019
shutterstock_560761723_1

Part of the Beyond the Beltway: Health Policy Webinars for Journalists series, this rapid response webinar explained the December 18th ruling from the Fifth Circuit on the Affordable Care Act.

Watch the Recording

In the News

January 2020
Population Health Spotlight
newsletter-loneliness-kas_10

Grants

Journalism GrantsJournalism Grant Program

We are no longer accepting letters of inquiry for the 2019-2020 round of grantmaking. NIHCM will notify grant winners in November 2019.

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Investigator-Initiated Research Grant Program

Nine new grantees for the 2019-2020 funding cycle have been announced! We will begin accepting Letters of Inquiry for the 2020-2021 funding cycle in late spring 2020.

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Awards

Now Accepting Entries for the 26th Annual Research and Journalism Awards

Winners Announcment 2018 1

Submit your research or reporting published in 2019 by February 3, 2020 for a chance to win up to $20,000. Winners and finalists will be recognized at a dinner in Washington, D.C., in May 2020.

Learn More and Apply