In October 2000, ACHI formed the Arkansas Health Insurance Expansion Initiative Roundtable to address the state’s growing crisis in health insurance coverage. Its goals were to understand issues facing households and employers and to recommend a 5-year to 10-year strategic plan for stabilizing and expanding health insurance coverage in Arkansas.
The 21 member coalition was made up of health care purchasers and providers, consumers, and insurers. The Roundtable met several times a year from October 2000 until April 2007. It was a participant-driven, independent platform for sharing ideas and formulating solution-oriented policies to advance health care financing options for Arkansans. The Roundtable’s recommendations led to significant policy changes that advanced health care coverage.
This diverse group of stakeholders from across Arkansas worked together, with ACHI as staff, to oversee the first state-based survey of health insurance status in Arkansas in 2000 with a follow-up survey in 2004. Its reported findings to the governor and US DHHS secretary included recommendations to stabilize and expand health insurance coverage.
Recommendations were based on two ACHI studies of quantitative and qualitative data detailing the health insurance status of Arkansans and use of a real-time data analysis tool developed by ACHI that incorporated multiple national datasets into one database. The Roundtable also supported establishment of the Joint Interim Committee on Health Insurance and Prescription Drugs and supported and promoted the Arkansas Safety Net Benefit Program, ARHealthNetwork.
Work of the Roundtable was supported by ACHI grants (State Planning Grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration and State Coverage Initiative Demonstration Grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation).
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