The Society of Actuaries and the Health Care Cost Institute, an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit research organization, have announced a partnership agreement on healthcare data.

Through the agreement, the SOA will have access to the HCCI's database to produce new research studies. The SOA was one of the founding organizations of the HCCI, which launched in September 2011 to promote independent, nonpartisan research and analysis on the causes of the rise in U.S. health spending.

One of the primary activities of HCCI is to create and maintain a first-of-its-kind database of updated information about public and private sector healthcare costs and utilization with data contributions from many insurers in the United States. The SOA, which recently added a new staff position to respond to the demand for healthcare research, will join a research panel including universities and other healthcare research organizations.

"The SOA will be able to develop several major research projects per year with access to the HCCI database, and thus respond to the growing need for informative, qualitative and unbiased research on health costs and utilization," said Rebecca Owen, health research actuary at the SOA.

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