Health Law and Policy

Legal epidemiology unites public health lawyers, researchers, and practitioners toward a common pursuit to inform public health decision-making that affects which laws work, for whom, and in what context. In addition, public health practitioners use legal epidemiology to examine law's direct and indirect effects on populations at risk for chronic health conditions, thereby providing a powerful tool to gain insights and pursue more effective, equitable public health strategies.

The past 30 years have brought increasing recognition that public policy can help prevent and ameliorate alcohol-related problems. Broadly speaking, alcohol public policy seeks to moderate consumption, restrict underage access to alcohol and exposure to alcohol marketing, control the settings in which consumption occurs, separate consumption from risky behaviors such as operating a motor vehicle or watercraft, and regulate the provision and reimbursement of alcohol prevention and treatment services.
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Health Policy
Evaluation of HHS Delivery System Reform Efforts and Affordable Care Act (ACA) Provisions, HHS/PSC/SAS/DAM/Office of the Secretary

Under the guidance of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the research team (consisting of staff from CDM and its subcontractor) conducted an Evaluation of HHS Delivery System Reform Efforts and Affordable Care Act (ACA) Provisions. This project measured the effects of the implementation of a wide range of new programs designed to drive improvements in the organization and delivery of health care services under the ACA. The CDM Team specified a general conceptual model of health systems change that recognized that observed changes in outcomes are influenced by: the components and incentives of specific delivery reform initiatives, the characteristics of organizations participating in those initiatives, and the broader competitive market and local policy environments within which those organizations operate.

This evaluation provided HHS with recommendations on a coordinated evaluation plan to tie results from the numerous Medicare, Medicaid, and Dual Eligible delivery system reform initiatives and ACA provisions into an overall model of health system change. The ultimate objective of the ACA delivery reform initiative was to slow the rate of health spending, improve the value of services delivered, and drive changes in the delivery system that would facilitate ongoing performance improvement, not only for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, but also for the overall system.