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Benefit Design in Health Care Reform: Patient Cost-Sharing

Description: This paper examines the health services and economics literature to learn what is known about the effects of patient cost-sharing (that is, annual deductibles, coinsurance, copayments, and out-of-pocket maximurns) on patients’ use of health care services, on plan expenditures, and on patients’ health outcomes.
Date: September 1993
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

The Big Picture: HDTV and High-Resolution Systems

Description: A report on High Definition Television (HDTV. During 1989, HDTV moved from obscurity to center stage in the ongoing debate over the role of the Federal Government in U.S. industrial competitiveness. HDTV and related High-Resolution System (HRS) technologies in the computer and communications sectors may significantly impact U.S. electronics manufacturing, accelerate fundamental restructuring of the U.S. communications infrastructure, and provide a host of valuable services.
Date: June 1990
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Biological Components of Substance Abuse and Addiction

Description: This paper describes biological contributing factors to substance abuse and addiction. The second document being produced by this study will discuss the complex interactions of biochemical, physiological, psychological, and sociological factors leading to substance abuse and addiction.
Date: September 1993
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Biological Effects of Power Frequency Electric and Magnetic Fields

Description: This background report responds to a request by the Subcommittee on Water and Power Resources of the House Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs. The subcommittee asked that OTA review the health effects of high-voltage transmission lines. To provide background information for its assessment on electric power wheeling, OTA contracted with the Carnegie-Mellon University.
Date: May 1989
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Biomedical Ethics in U.S. Public Policy

Description: This report reviews the history of four Federal bioethics initiatives: the National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects of Biomedical and Behavioral Research, the Ethics Advisory Board, the President’s Commission for the Study of Ethical Problems in Medicine and Biomedical and Behavioral Research, and the Biomedical Ethics Advisory Committee.
Date: June 1993
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Biopolymers: Making Materials Nature's Way

Description: This report discusses a study that provides a basic introduction to biopolymer technology; profiles some of the more promising polymer materials; reviews research activities in the United States, Europe, and Japan; and describes the principal technical challenges and regulatory issues that may affect biopolymer commercialization efforts.
Date: September 1993
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Bioremediation for Marine Oil Spills

Description: This OTA background paper evaluates the current state of knowledge and assesses the potential of bioremediation for responding to marine oil spills. Our basic message is a dual one: we caution that there are still many uncertainties about the use of bioremediation as a practical oil spill response technology; nevertheless, it could be appropriate in certain circumstances, and further research and development of bioremediation technologies could lead to enhancing the Nation’s capability to fight marine oil spills.
Date: May 1991
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Children's Dental Services Under the Medicaid Program

Description: The report discusses the oral health of children eligible for Medicaid, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce and its Subcommittee on Health and the Environment requested OTA to determine whether children eligible for Medicaid are provided at least a minimum level of dental care. This study compares the dental manuals of seven State Medicaid programs with a set of “basic’ dental services (which comprise shared components of various well-accepted dental guidelines) to see if States allow these particular services.
Date: September 1990
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Cleaning Up Contaminated Wood-Treating Sites

Description: This report reviews technologies available for hazardous waste cleanup at wood-treating sites throughout the United States. OTA found that there are many Superfund wood-treatment sites located in this country that are very similar in terms of the contaminants present and the options selected for cleanup.
Date: September 1995
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Computer Software and Intellectual Property

Description: This background paper examines existing intellectual-property protection for computer software-copyrights, patents, and trade secrets—and provides an overview of the often conflicting views and concerns of various stakeholders. It was prepared in response to a request from the Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Administration of Justice of the House Committee on the Judiciary.
Date: March 1990
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Coping With an Oiled Sea

Description: In the aftermath of the Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska in March, 1989, a myriad of investigations were initiated to evaluate the causes of that accident and to propose remedies. The Office of Technology Assessment was asked to study the Nation’s oil spill clean-up capabilities and to assess the technologies for responding to such catastrophic spills in the future.
Date: March 1990
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Development Assistance, Export Promotion, and Environmental Technology

Description: This background paper provides an overview of developing country environmental problems and markets for environmental technologies and services. It discusses preliminary estimates on the amount and purposes of environmental aid provided by donor countries in 1991. The paper discusses the commercial implications of other countries’ aid for U.S. environmental firms, and the Helsinki package adopted by the OECD in late 1991 to limit commercial advantage from use of tied aid credits.
Date: August 1993
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Dioxin Treatment Technologies

Description: This paper presents the status of national efforts to cleanup dioxin-contaminated sites and the technologies that have been used, proposed, and researched. It covers thermal and nonthermal treatment techniques as well as approaches such as stabilization and storage. It discusses the development of these technologies as well as advantages and disadvantages of their use.
Date: November 1991
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Disposal of Chemical Weapons: Alternative Technologies

Description: This background paper briefly describes the Army’s chemical weapons destruction program, discusses the factors that could affect a decision to develop alternatives, discusses the alternatives, and illustrates the difficulty of gaining public acceptance of complex technical systems.
Date: June 1992
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Distributed Interactive Simulation of Combat

Description: This background paper complements OTA’s background paper, Virtual Reality and Technologies of Combat Simulation, which focuses on the human-computer interface technologies used in simulations.
Date: September 1995
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Does Health Insurance Make a Difference?

Description: This background paper reviews and evaluates the available literature linking health insurance coverage with the utilization and process of health care services and with individual health outcomes.
Date: September 1992
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Effectiveness and Costs of Osteoporosis Screening and Hormone Replacement Therapy, Vol. I: Cost-Effectiveness Analysis

Description: This paper assesses the medical benefits and costs of both screening and hormone replacement therapy. It is divided into two volumes. This volume presents the results of a model that estimates the cost per year of life gained from osteoporosis screening and hormone replacement therapy in postmenopausal women.
Date: August 1995
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Effectiveness and Costs of Osteoporosis Screening and Hormone Replacement Therapy, Vol. II: Evidence on Benefits, Risks, and Costs

Description: This paper assesses the medical benefits and costs of both screening and hormone replacement therapy. It is divided into two volumes. This volume provides the basis for the assumptions about the costs and effects of screening and hormonal replacement therapy used in the cost-effectiveness model.
Date: August 1995
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Electronic delivery of public assistance benefits: technology options and policy issues

Description: This background paper discusses the technological options available for use in an electronic system to deliver public assistance benefits, the privacy and security implications of such a system, and the programmatic effects of changing to an electronic delivery system. It was requested by the Subcommittee on the Handicapped of the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources.
Date: April 1988
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Electronic Surveillance in a Digital Age

Description: This background paper reviews the progress of the industry and the law enforcement agencies in implementing the Act since its approval in October 1994.
Date: July 1995
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

Energy Use and the U.S. Economy

Description: The background paper extends the analysis of energy use into new areas by explicitly looking at how energy use has changed with the expansion of the service sector, the explosion of international trade, and greater complexity of the U.S. economy as the structure of businesses changed in response to new technologies and competitive challenges. The increasing sophistication of the U.S. economy means that the role of energy is less likely to be directly identified and is instead more likely to be an indirect factor that was added many steps before in the complex network that connects producer to consumer. This report explicitly separates direct from indirect energy use.
Date: June 1990
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.

The FBI Fingerprint Identification Automation Program: Issues and Options

Description: This report focuses on key assumptions that will affect the sizing and procurement of the new FBI system, and on other related steps that appear necessary to ensure complete and up-to-date record systems. These include full implementation of a Federal/State/local partnership for maintaining and exchanging fingerprint and criminal history records; enactment of an interstate compact or Federal legislation setting out uniform rules for the exchange of such records; standards and funding for improving criminal history record completeness and disposition reporting; and privacy and security protections for electronic fingerprint and record information.
Date: November 1991
Creator: United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment.