Under the 2010 Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans gained health coverage in 2014. Coverage is key to accessing affordable, high-quality care, but consumers who struggle to understand how health insurance works and how to estimate out-of-pocket costs are at risk of going without needed care even if they are covered. This brief outlines identifies what health insurance aspects pose the greatest problems for consumers, which groups need more assistance to enroll and use benefits, and what topics and skills consumer-counseling efforts should focus on.
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21 Oct 2014
The rollout of California's Kindergarten Readiness Act has given rise to questions about how transitional kindergarten is being implemented in districts throughout California. This second research brief in a series highlighting findings from the study focuses on characteristics of transitional kindergarten classrooms compared with those of kindergarten classrooms.
20 Oct 2014
As American Baby Boomers retire and age, questions about how to deliver long-term care efficiently and control health care costs grow more important with each projected increase in health care needs. This brief examines recent research on both costs and outcomes, exposes fault lines in previous approaches to assessing consumer preferences in long-term care, and provides new evidence on the cost-effectiveness of current long-term care policy.
19 Oct 2014
Research shows that coaches have the ability to affect youths' decision-making. AIR researchers evaluated the impact of Coach Across America, a sports-based youth development program, on underserved youth nationwide over the course of the 2013-2014 program year.
15 Oct 2014
Historically, health and human service systems have served people who have experienced trauma without acknowledging, understanding, or addressing its impact and the need for tailored responses. This brief addresses the need for a comprehensive approach to trauma intervention across service settings.
14 Oct 2014
Understanding health insurance is central to affording and accessing health care in the United States. Efforts to support consumers in making wise purchasing decisions and using health insurance to their advantage would benefit from the development of a valid and reliable measure to assess health insurance literacy. This article reports on the development of the Health Insurance Literacy Measure, a self-assessment measure of consumers' ability to select and use private health insurance.
13 Oct 2014
In 2011, Zambia’s Ministry of Community Development, Women and Child Health (MCDMCH) began implementing the Multiple Categorical cash transfer program in two districts. An impact evaluation with experimental design accompanied the program in order to learn its effects on recipients and provide evidence for making decisions about the future of the program. AIR was contracted by UNICEF Zambia to design and implement a randomized, controlled trial for a three-year impact evaluation of the program and to conduct the necessary data collection, analysis, and reporting.
12 Oct 2014
How much graduates earn when they enter the labor market has become a hot-button issue as student debt mounts and fewer new graduates get jobs with the wages needed to pay off their loans. As this status report and these independent research findings show, the need now is for more long-term earnings data; fuller disclosure; and simpler, more accessible data presentation, so students and parents can make better decisions.
10 Oct 2014
An AIR report finds that Pennsylvania’s system for financing public schools severely underfunds many of the state’s highest need urban and rural public school districts. The report found that the average levels of both school spending and student achievement in Pennsylvania are above the national average, but fail to meet the most basic equity standards, with significant numbers of districts serving high-need populations having substantially lower per-pupil spending than surrounding districts serving more advantaged populations.
5 Oct 2014
In recent years, there has been an increased focus on turning around our nation’s low-performing schools, with substantial investments from the U.S. Department of Education into new and continuing awards under the federal School Improvement Grants (SIG) program. This brief focuses on the implementation of SIG by examining three interrelated levers for school improvement: school operational authority, state and district support for turnaround, and state monitoring of turnaround efforts.