What’s new in health care research?
Making Hospital Discharges Safer for Seniors
This Healthcare 411 podcast at the site of U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) focuses on the welfare of elderly patients just returning from the hospitals. In many cases, these patients suffer from medications mishaps. The latest AHRQ data suggests that American hospitals spent nearly $31 billion on care that could have been prevented with more timely and effective outpatient treatment… new information technology system helps to make the transition from hospital to home safer.
New Reports Show Weak Progress on Health Quality
Good news and bad news about American health care. The good news: An AHRQ study reveals an improvement – albeit weak – in the overall health quality. The bad news: patient safety is getting worse. More details in another post!
Eating Disorder Hospitalizations Rising
The latest AHRQ figures on eating disorders show an 18% increase in hospitalizations due to eating disorders between 1999 and 2006.
What’s new in health care reform?
A Strategy for Health Care Reform – Toward a Value-Based System
Dr. Michael E. Porter of Harvard Business School gives his perspectives (published in the June issue of the New England Journal of Medicine) on how to go about reforming the US health care system. He proposes a series of critical steps, namely:
- Change the nature of health insurance competition, e.g. insurers, private ot public should only profit if they improve their subscribers’ health.
- Keep employers in the insurance system.
- Address the unfair burden on people who have no access to employer-based coverage, who therefore face higher premiums and greater difficulty securing coverage.
- Make individual insurance affordable, e.g. through statewide or multistate insurance pools.
- Give income-based subsidies to help lower-income people buy insurance.
- Require everyone to purchase health insurance so that younger and healthier people cannot opt out.
What’s new at the regulators?
FDA Awards $1 Million in Grants to Three States to Enhance Food and Feed Safety
The US FDA awarded onye-year grants to Arkansas, Nebraska, and Wisconsin Food Safety and Security Monitoring. The funds will be used to fund/set up Food Emergency Response Network (FERN) labs. FERN labs play an essential role in food safety monitoring, especially in large-scale events affecting food or food products.
FDA Forms Transparency Task Force
This task force has the job of developing recommendations that will enhance the transparency of the US FDA’s decision-making process, especially in drug approval. The agency has been criticizes before about conflicts of interest and political influences in their operations. According to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius “Our administration is committed to making government open and transparent. The Transparency Task Force will give the American people a seat at the table and make the FDA more open and accountable.”