Improving Healthcare for High-Need Patients

Americans deserve a healthcare system that provides high-quality care at a reasonable cost. The current system is failing many people, but especially those who have the greatest health needs and the fewest resources to pay for it.

Many solutions have been proposed to better serve the growing number of high-need patients. Unfortunately, efforts have been largely ineffective and sporadically coordinated with social services, resulting in great variations of outcomes and cost. That variation is cause for concern because the result is an underperforming healthcare system—leading to lower-quality care for people who need it most, and threatening the financial sustainability of the overall healthcare system. At the same time, however, the variation suggests that there may be pockets of excellence where better care is being delivered at a lower cost—and this is our great opportunity.

With 5% of Americans accounting for almost 50% the nation’s healthcare spend, doing better in this key area of healthcare could improve millions of lives and free up wasted resources. To make progress, we need to know more about the people with the most significant healthcare needs and the services they use; identify and validate the care delivery models that generate above-average health outcomes at lower-than-average costs; and transfer the knowledge and know-how to promote their broad adoption so that the models of excellence can become the community standard.

Learning Update: Improving Healthcare for High-Need Patients

In this report, we share what we've learned, the questions we are now asking ourselves and our partners, and why we are optimistic about improving care for high-need patients.

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Seven Foundations Combine Forces to Transform Care Delivery for High-Need Patients

We are collaborating with six other healthcare foundations to transform care delivery for chronically ill patients.

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Peterson Center on Healthcare Announces New Partnership to Accelerate Adoption of Proven Care Model for High-Need Patients

Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers and Health Quality Partners will work to accelerate adoption of a model that has been shown to improve care and lower costs among chronically ill, older adults.


Peterson Center on Healthcare Teams with Brown University to Study Exemplary Care for High-Need Medicare Patients

Brown University-based initiative will identify hospital systems providing high-quality, cost-effective care, with the aim of replication and broader adoption.


Peterson Center on Healthcare Announces Innovative Three-Stage Grant to Identify Healthcare Solutions for High-Need Patients

The research project is an innovative collaboration among healthcare experts at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, the Institute of Medicine, and the Bipartisan Policy Center.


Issue Brief: Improving Healthcare for High-Need Patients

This issue brief offers an overview of the “state of play” in addressing the challenges of high-need patients.

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