Since its inception in 1971, the National Health Policy Forum was supported by funders who endorsed its mission to serve the needs of health policy staff, and who believed that open, candid dialogue in a neutral environment would facilitate meaningful engagement.

The Forum maintained multiple funding sources to ensure its independence and neutrality. Together, the following private foundations provided 99 percent of its budget in the final year of operation: The Atlantic Philanthropies; The John A. Hartford Foundation; The Josiah Macy, Jr. Foundation; the Kresge Foundation; and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The BlueCross BlueShield Association was also a corporate sponsor. In 2019, the West Health Policy Center provided generous funding to maintain the Forum's website through December 2021. 

Products often had multiple sponsors, reflecting the interconnectedness of most health policy issues and the Forum's commitment to developing objective programming. The Forum did not seek or accept funding from government sources.

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