The National Quality Forum's Measure Applications Partnership recommended HHS consider removing 51 ineffective measures used by seven federal health care public reporting and quality programs. The public-private partnership group also made recommendations for improving measure sets in nine federal programs.
A study in Milbank Quarterly assessing the Affordable Care Act found variations in emergency department access, health care affordability and health care quality, based on income and race. The study analyzed data from the "Patients' Perspectives on Health Care in the United States" survey.
The Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority reported that 50.4% of medication error reports from state health care facilities listed computerized prescriber order entry systems as a contributing factor, with pharmacy systems listed in 28.2% of reports and electronic medication administration record systems mentioned in 28.1%. Researchers said 69.2% of errors reached patients.
Surgeons who received monthly cost feedback scorecards plus a financial incentive reduced their surgical supply costs by 6.5%, compared with a 7.4% increase in costs for those who did not get scorecards. The study in JAMA Surgery found equal or better outcomes for 30-day readmissions, mortality and discharge status after the intervention.
Presbyterian Healthcare Services President and CEO Dale Maxwell said his organization's patient navigation model uses medical screenings when patients arrive at the emergency department to determine whether the ED is the appropriate place to meet their needs, with an eye toward reducing costs and improving care coordination, and patient satisfaction has improved as a result. The organization has also prioritized data sharing and telehealth programs to reach more rural areas of New Mexico with critical health services, recognizing that health care is local but some lessons should be widely adopted.
Patients are not optimizing use of their health data because their information is not aggregated into a single EHR, highlighting the need for an interoperable, streamlined system, according to the Government Accountability Office. Patient records are still siloed with separate login information for each health care provider's portal, technology to collect and aggregate disparate data is not widely used, and records often lack data not legally required to be included, such as clinicians' notes and radiology images.
The CMS has updated its electronic clinical quality measure specifications for eligible professionals for the 2017 reporting period and released an advance notice about what providers can expect on the upcoming changes for the 2018 reporting period. Each of the eCQM standards were based on the six priorities of the National Quality Strategy, including patient safety, effective clinical care, and person and caregiver-centered experience and outcomes.
Youths younger than 18 whose parents or caregivers used mobile health apps or text messaging had better health outcomes and behaviors, compared with those whose parents didn't use such interventions, researchers reported in JAMA Pediatrics. The findings, based on an analysis of 37 studies involving nearly 30,000 children, showed more significant improvements when parents or caregivers, children, and physicians collaborated within the digital health platform.
Four Republican governors have proposed an alternate plan for Medicaid that would cover more people, include more federal money and give states more options than GOP health care legislation in the House.
The ACC and the American Heart Association have released a focused update of guidelines for the treatment of patients with valvular heart disease. The new guidelines, which have been updated to reflect the latest research since the last guidelines were published in 2014, were published March 15 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. Specifically, the focused update includes changes in indications for antibiotic prophylaxis for infective endocarditis, the use of direct oral anticoagulants among patients with atrial fibrillation and heart valve disease, indications for transcatheter aortic valve replacement, surgical management of patients with primary and secondary mitral regurgitation, and management of patients with a heart valve prosthesis. Read more on ACC.org.
In a recent Editor's Page published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, Richard A. Chazal, MD, MACC, and Michael J. Montgomery, FACHE, director of the cardiovascular service line at Lee Health System, discuss the use of the dyad model of management for addressing operational excellence and cost reduction, while improving the quality of patient care and enhancing patient experience. In the dyad model, management teams at hospitals and health systems consist of one clinical member and one administrative member, leveraging each other's strengths to advance organizational performance and ultimately save lives. "We have found the dyad model to be valuable in creating a collaborative culture that is built around shared goals, and takes into account administrative and clinical needs, all while striving to keep quality of patient care central to all discussions," they write. Read more.
I have accepted fear as a part of life, specifically the fear of change, the fear of the unknown. I have gone ahead despite the pounding in the heart that says: Turn back.
Erica Jong, writer
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