Inside Health Care

Carolyn Clancy’s picture

By: Carolyn Clancy

Choosing a hospital that scores well on quality can make it easier and safer for you to recover from a serious event, such as heart surgery, or a routine one, such as having a baby. Doing a little homework before you choose a hospital can do more than give you peace of mind.

Quality Digest’s picture

By: Quality Digest

Walk into many stores and you’re bound to be impressed by the quality of digital cameras, TVs, cell phones, and other consumer electronics. Every year the quality of these devices improves by leaps and bounds, and consumers often pay less as products improve.

Quality Digest’s picture

By: Quality Digest

Walk into many stores and you’re bound to be impressed by the quality of digital cameras, TVs, cell phones, and other consumer electronics. Every year the quality of these devices improves by leaps and bounds, and consumers often pay less as products improve.

I wish the same could be said about the quality of the health care in America. A new report from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), found that we—patients, doctors, hospitals, nursing homes, health insurers, and others—are taking only baby steps when it comes to making health care safer and more effective.

Quality Digest’s picture

By: Quality Digest

A thorny question lies at the heart of meaningful health care reform. How much is human life worth? New research from Wharton and Stanford based on Medicare kidney-dialysis data shows that the average figure—$129,090 per additional year of quality life—is higher than prior studies have shown.

Carolyn M. Clancy M.D.’s default image

By: Carolyn M. Clancy M.D.

If you’ve ever watched the popular “MythBusters” program on the Discovery Channel, you know that many supposed truths are based on old, incomplete, or simply incorrect information.

The same can be said about beliefs about the quality of health care in America. How many times have you heard that more tests and treatments are better than fewer? Or that more costly care is better?

Patricia C. La Londe’s default image

By: Patricia C. La Londe

Cardinal Health Alaris Products, which makes pumps and disposables used during infusions, was in critical shape in the late 1990s and needed to address improvement on all fronts. The prescription included improvements in customer satisfaction and in the company’s finances, which required the company’s leaders to rethink their roles and forced them to create a culture that would encourage everyone to work toward the same goals.

Bill Kalmar’s picture

By: Bill Kalmar

Advancing into that mystical category of “senior citizen” brings with it certain perks.

Mike Richman’s picture

By: Mike Richman

Dr. Tomas Gonzalez, senior vice president and chief quality officer for Valley Baptist Health System of Harlingen, Texas, is a busy man. Not only does he direct quality process improvement at Valley Baptist’s two hospitals, he’s also a physician and a certified Master Black Belt. Valley Baptist had a banner year in 2007, including the achievement of a No. 1 U.S.

Quality Digest’s picture

By: Quality Digest

The cost of poor quality in health care ranges from 30 to 60 cents of every health care dollar. Until recently, however, there have been few financial consequences for health care providers’ failure to address the underlying root causes.

Georgia Institute of Technology’s picture

By: Georgia Institute of Technology

Research reported recently in the journal Advanced Materials describes a potentially promising strategy for encouraging the regeneration of damaged central nervous system cells known as neurons.The technique would use a biodegradable polymer containing a chemical group that mimics the neurotransmitter acetylcholine to spur the growth of neurites, projections that form the connections among neurons and between neurons and other cells. The biomimetic polymers would then guide the growth of the regenerating nerve.

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