Letter from the Editor

We are pleased to present the inaugural issue of RAND Health Quarterly, an online journal sharing the results of recent RAND research areas across a broad spectrum of health-related issues. Our work spans a wide range of topics each year, including health policy and health economics; health care delivery, quality, and patient safety; clinical care; global health; mental health; health promotion and disease prevention; public health and emergency preparedness; military health; research methods; and science policy.

In this issue, we present a sample of work from our 2010 archives, followed by reports from the first quarter of 2011. Highlights of this work include:

  • research-based practical tools to help policymakers identify neighborhood-level “hot spots” of suboptimal health or health care that may be due to low health literacy and to help develop plans to enhance community resilience in the face of health security threats
  • assessments of policy options and practices for incorporating comparative effectiveness research into decisionmaking, considering models of payment reform, and reporting on health care providers' performance
  • studies of clinical care, including international variation in the use of medications for a variety of conditions and changes in nephrology as it evolves from a focus on end-stage renal disease to the treatment of all stages of chronic kidney disease
  • evaluations of a program to provide care for maternal depression and a disaster case management pilot program
  • studies that assess the relationship between patient safety and malpractice litigation, describe the role that faith-based organizations play in addressing HIV in Central America, provide an overview of evidence for tobacco product regulation, assess methods for evaluating disease management programs, and explore the impact of research investments on cardiovascular conditions and stroke
  • research on health and health care in the U.S. military community, emphasizing suicide prevention, the needs of veterans, the experiences of military families, and leadership in the military health care system.

We hope you will find the information in RAND Health Quarterly helpful to your future research and policy assessment efforts.

To manage your subscription to RAND Health Quarterly, please visit http://rhq.rand.org/subscribe.html. The RAND Health Quarterly editorial staff can be reached at RHQ@rand.org.

Kind regards,

Robin M. Weinick, Ph.D.
RAND Health Quarterly

RAND Health Quarterly is produced by the RAND Corporation. ISSN 2162-8254.