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The University of Chicago Medicine Collaborates with Google on Machine Learning Research

Emily Schweich

Google and UChicago researchers hope to use machine learning to find patterns in electronic health records and predict readmissions and complications.

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HRSA Recognizes Essential Hospitals for Organ Donation Outreach

Michelle Rosenfeld

Eighty essential hospitals received recognition for their organ, eye, and tissue donation and registration efforts between October 2016 and April 2017.

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HHS Promotes Preparedness for Aug. 21 Solar Eclipse

Michelle Rosenfeld

A federal planning guide aims to help local emergency health care personnel prepare for the migration of eclipse watchers to areas without adequate health care infrastructure.

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Essential Hospitals Continue To Lead Fight Against HIV

Michelle Rosenfeld

As National HIV Testing Day approaches, we call to mind the work our members have done, and continue to do each day, to fight this debilitating disease.

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Immigration Policies Create Uncertainty for Health Care Workforce

Shahid Zaman

Immigration orders by the Trump administration already have limited the ability of hospitals to recruit the world’s most qualified medical graduates.

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Orlando Health Doctors Take Cross-Country Drive for Men’s Health

Emily Schweich

Two Orlando Health urologists visit gyms, bars, and community events around the country, combining social and fitness events with health awareness lectures

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Virtual ICUs Help Essential Hospitals Improve Access

Tearsanee Carlisle Davis, DNP, FNP-BC

Virtual ICUs, like the one at University of Mississippi Medical Center, can be used as proactive care models to ensure access to care for all Americans.

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Beware the Bots: Essential Hospitals Harness Robotic Technology

Emily Schweich

From chatbot radiologists to robot friends, essential hospitals are harnessing the power of technology.

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Celebrating National Women’s Health Week

UTMB and other essential hospitals across the country encourage women to make their health a priority.

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Maternal Mortality: A Complicated and Pressing Health Issue

Madeline White

The United States has one of the highest rates of pregnancy-related deaths in the world, and essential hospitals have a pivotal role in helping to reduce it.

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3-D Imaging Helps Heal Broken Hearts at Henry Ford Hospital

Emily Schweich

Using 3-D imaging to treat atrial fibrillation showed a 100 percent success rate, a zero percent complication rate, and led to quicker patient recovery.

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Everyday Heroes Take Action at UTMB

Donna Sollenberger

When a fire broke out at the University of Texas Medical Branch’s John Sealy Hospital, 110 patients, their visitors, and the staff had to evacuate.

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New Parkland Clinic Will Continue Ron Anderson’s Legacy

Michelle Rosenfeld

The new 227,420-square-foot clinic will build on the former CEO’s vision of ensuring health care for the most vulnerable among us.

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UTMC Assists in Response to Tenn. Fires

Michelle Rosenfeld

Fifteen patients affected by the “Chimney Tops 2” fire in Tenn. were taken to the ED at University of Tennessee Medical Center, the area’s only level I trauma center.

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The Importance of Antibiotic Stewardship at Essential Hospitals

Monika Joshi

Jennifer Pisano, associate medical director of The University of Chicago Medicine’s Antimicrobial Stewardship Program, discusses proper use of antibiotics.

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White House Targets Millennials for Health Coverage

Madeline White

The White House held a summit on increasing health coverage among young adults ahead of the next open enrollment period under the ACA, which begins Nov. 1.

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Antibiotic Resistance: The Biggest Health Threat of Our Time

Matthew Buechner

If left unchecked, antibiotic-resistant infections will kill 10 million people a year and cost the worldwide economy $100 trillion by 2050.

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Parkland, UNM on Preventing and Caring for Sepsis

Monika Joshi

For Sepsis Awareness Month, in September, we spoke to experts at two member hospitals, Parkland Health & Hospital System and UNM Health Sciences Center, about their efforts to prevent and care for sepsis.

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Association Remembers Former Board Chair Howard Cohen

Cohen, a former hospital administrator at NYC Health + Hospitals and America’s Essential Hospitals board chair in 1995, died Sept. 24 at age 80.

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Taking a Stand to Prevent Falls in Elderly Patients

Monika Joshi

Recognizing the opportunity for improvement in geriatrics care, association members NuHealth and Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital have made falls prevention a priority.

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Pokémon Go Helps Harborview Patients Heal

Monika Joshi

Pokémon Go, the augmented-reality game, has helped pediatric patients at Seattle’s Harborview Medical Center recover from burn injuries.

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New to Waivers or Veteran, this Is the Summit for You

As essential hospitals leaders, we all need to stay on top of the evolving landscape for Medicaid Section 1115 waivers. Medicaid waivers offer a key opportunity to make health care delivery more effective and efficient – and to reduce our uncompensated care burden. Consider our experience in Texas. Over the life of the Texas Health

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Author Discusses Continued Importance of Essential Hospitals

Michelle Rosenfeld

Essential hospitals strive every day to close the health care equity gap and provide quality care to all, including the most vulnerable. A new book, A Spirit of Charity, highlights the important role these hospitals play in the United States health care system. In the book, Mike King, a reporter for nearly 40 years, profiles

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Essential Women’s Leadership Academy Hosts Inaugural Meeting

Erin Sclar

Women bring critical perspectives to hospital leadership roles, yet they are significantly underrepresented, especially in CEO positions. America’s Essential Hospitals and its members are committed to reducing this gender gap in hospital leadership. For one, essential hospitals have long worked to promote equity — both in delivery of care and in cultivating leaders who are

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New Book Highlights Essential Hospitals’ Role in U.S. Health Care System

Michelle Rosenfeld

Public hospitals have always played an important role in the United States health care system and their contributions are emphasized in a new book, A Spirit of Charity. In the book, Mike King, a reporter for nearly 40 years, profiles three members of America’s Essential Hospitals — Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta, Parkland Memorial Hospital

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Another Grim Reminder of Essential Hospitals’ Role

On July 25, two teenagers were killed and at least 16 other people were injured in the second mass shooting in Florida this summer.

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Medicaid Expansion Could Be Key to Improving Essential Hospitals’ Margins

Rachel Schwartz

Georgetown University and Kaiser Family Foundation studies suggest Medicaid expansion might be key to improving financial outcomes for essential hospitals.

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Orlando Health Responds to Mass Shooting

Michelle Rosenfeld

In the wake of the largest mass shooting in the United States, our thoughts are with our member, Orlando Health, as it treats the victims and keeps their family members informed. Nearly 50 people were killed in an Orlando, Fla., LGBT nightclub on the morning of June 12, and more than 50 more were injured in the attack. Orlando

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The 140-Character HCAHPS Survey?

Jamie Cetrone

Nearly all members of America’s Essential Hospitals use social media to reach out to their communities. But social media is a two-way street, and essential hospitals also understand the value of social platforms, such as Twitter, to monitor and respond to patient feedback and use those interactions to improve care and the care experience. The

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Essential Hospitals Prepare for Zika Battle

Michelle Rosenfeld

Essential hospitals in Florida, New York and Texas — the three states with the highest incidences of Zika cases as of March 9 — are working to educate patients and providers about the virus before warmer weather brings the potential for a spike in the number of cases. Florida had the highest number of Zika cases

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Heart Racing this Valentine’s Day? There’s an ICD-10 Code for that.

Michelle Rosenfeld

Flowers, jewelry, heart-shaped cookies — all of these things are associated with Valentine’s Day. But they also could land you in the hospital. After several delays, the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Edition (ICD-10) went into effect in October 2015 and essential hospitals are ready to use the codes this weekend to diagnose your Valentine’s

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Watching the Big Game? Essential Hospitals Are Watching Out for You

Michelle Rosenfeld

Near or far away from the big game, essential hospitals stand ready to treat Super Bowl fans.

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Essential Hospitals Make Pitch for ACA Enrollment

Carl Graziano

As Jan. 31 open enrollment deadline looms, association spreads the word about ACA coverage options and tools to assess coverage needs and cost.

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Members Defy Uneven Progress in Fight Against Sepsis

We’re making progress in the fight against sepsis – and essential hospitals are doing their part – but we still have much work left to do.

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Loss from 9/11 Underscores Importance of Health Care Outreach

Maya Linson, MS

The recent passing of a 9/11 survivor is an important reminder of the need for health care outreach and discussion

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Experience Medicaid and Medicare with the WALLS DOWN

Maya Linson, MS

As we mark 50 years of Medicaid and Medicare, we reflect on the experiences of others within and beyond the four walls of essential hospitals.

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Digital Health, Primary Care: The Future of Patient Empowerment

Sandy Laycox, MFA

Digital health. It’s coming. Or maybe, it’s here. Just last month, America’s Essential Hospitals held its annual conference, VITAL2015. Our opening keynote speaker was Eric Topol, MD, director of the Scripps Translational Science Institute and a leading practitioner of digital medicine. During his speech, Topol talked about how technology, such as the smartphone, is democratizing

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Another Big Deal: Supreme Court Upholds Subsidies

Maya Linson, MS

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the federal government may legally provide subsidies for health insurance sold via federally run health insurance marketplaces. As everyone watching the news, scanning Twitter, or talking to their colleagues has seen, this is a pretty big deal. It was a 6 to 3 ruling in the King v. Burwell

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Chefs and Hospitals: Unlikely Allies in Fight against Food Insecurity

Sandy Laycox, MFA

Top chefs put healthful spin on fast food as essential hospitals work to reduce food deserts in their communities

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Should Medicaid House the Homeless? L.A. County Says Yes

Maya Linson, MS

Los Angeles County Department of Health Services is using county health funds to house and care for the homeless. California wants to with Medicaid funds.

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How neuroscience can help CEOs enhance organizational potential

Patty Fahy, MD

A neuroscience lens helps leaders understand how to create an environment that promotes potential – learn more during The Executive Brain session at VITAL2015.

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The Value of School Nurses – an Essential Hospital’s Perspective

Ronald J. Wiewora, MD

Honoring school nurses for National Nurses Week – showing how they provide value to the community in Palm Beach County and elsewhere

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Social Equity, Civil Unrest, and Health

Janelle Schrag

Socioeconomic inequalities at root of civil unrest in Baltimore and similar incidents over the past year

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Supreme Court: Providers Can’t Sue States over Medicaid Rates

Amanda Walsh

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court released its opinion on Armstrong v. Exceptional Child, where the court ruled Medicaid providers cannot sue states for low payment rates and what they should do instead

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Congress Eyes 340B: Surprising Support on Both Sides of Aisle

For now, lawmakers focused on information gathering, better oversight, clarity, and accountability

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Uniting on Patient and Family Engagement

Growing evidence shows that engaging patients and their families in care produces safer patient care and better outcomes

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The Financial Burden of Cancer: Patient-Centered Outcomes Research

Maya Linson, MS

A new tool from the University of Chicago aims to help physicians assess and help patients facing financial burdens after a cancer diagnosis.

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Families as Partners in Care: The New Normal at Contra Costa’s Essential Hospital

Anna Roth

We as hospitals need to be truly welcoming places where families and loved ones are included as essential to patient care. Here’s how we did it at Contra Costa Regional Medical Center in California.

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Essential Hospitals Do Their Part to Reduce Medical Errors

Amid troubling reports, essential hospitals work diligently to improve patient safety and reduce medical errors – and succeed

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Federal Insurance Subsidies at Issue in King v. Burwell – we say, #GotCovered?

Maya Linson, MS

What are we doing to demonstrate support for ACA insurance coverage subsidies? We filed and amicas brief for King v. Burwell affirming the position. Here’s what we said and why.

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Judging Your Program: Exploring a Few Types of Evaluation Methods

Learn about common evaluation approaches and determine the best type for your innovative hospital improvement programs.

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My Day in Court: Oral Arguments for Supreme Court’s Medicaid Case

Amanda Walsh

Justices weigh arguments for allowing providers to sue states over low payment rates – and I was there

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Association Members Bring 2015 Policy Priorities to the Hill

Top issues include protecting Medicaid and Medicare from cuts, protecting the 340B program, and risk adjusting quality incentive program measures

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Beyond the Four Walls of the Hospital

Maya Linson, MS

Our new online magazine called Walls Down features emotional storytelling covering one core aspect of essential hospitals: specialized, lifesaving services.

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President’s Immigration Plan Makes Waves, Stops Short of Health Care

Amanda Walsh

Obama’s executive action offers new opportunities for immigrants to live and work in the United States, but no relief for lack of health care coverage

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The Complex Situation Surrounding Patients’ Immigration Status

Gabrielle Lessard

Essential hospitals face barriers in providing care to immigrant populations. They must find unique ways to address the complexity surrounding immigration status for their patients.

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More Heat than Light in Latest Criticism of 340B

Bruce Siegel, MD, MPH

Latest critique of 340B disappoints with fiction and unsupported assertions, rather than the plain facts of this important program

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Please Don’t Pass the Salt: World Heart Day 2014

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the world’s number one cause of death, and the burden is only growing. Today, on World Heart Day, we know that CVD is responsible for 17.3 million deaths per year and is projected to cause 23 million deaths per year by 2030. To raise awareness and promote discussion for solutions, the

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How do research and evaluation differ?

Staff -

Innovations in health care require evaluation to determine impact and success. But what is the difference between conducting an evaluation and researching a program? At Olive View-UCLA Medical Center, staff learned this distinction is important to consider.

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Momentum for Socioeconomic Factors in Quality, Performance Measures

Janelle Schrag

NQF work adds to momentum toward adjusting quality and performance measures for patient sociodemographic factors

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Medicaid Expansion and the Designated Hitter Rule – A Case of Unilateral Disarmament

Shawn Gremminger

It is difficult to find creative ways to describe the thoughtlessness of states’ decisions to opt out of Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act. Here is one involving a stats website and baseball.

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Federal Incentives – Right Intentions, Wrong Impact?

An examination of a recent study highlighting the challenge of providing financial incentives fairly based on outcomes and hospital characteristics.

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Community Feedback Drives Successful Empowerment Program

Aaron Byzak

To best help the at-risk communities they serve, UCSD Health Sciences took feedback from the community to staff redesign and augment their services.

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Community Empowerment through Health, Education and Research

Aaron Byzak

UCSD Health Sciences several years ago began this journey to elevate community partnerships, benefiting at-risk communities and the organization.

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Members Navigate Southeast Politics at Regional Strategy Meeting

Sixteen members of America’s Essential Hospitals from across the Southeast met for our Regional Strategy Meeting that covered direct lobbying, effective communication, and citizen advocacy.

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Taking Action Online and Offline for Medicaid

Maya Linson, MS

Action, engagement, and the human story of often technical or financial issues is key to driving education and awareness – learn how Medicaid expansion became personal.

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Implementing and Refining Solutions in Care Delivery

Mark Richman

Innovation does not end with implementation – ongoing evaluation and refinement also are key to ensure success.

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The Story of Our History Frames Next Chapter

Carl Graziano

Through interviews and images, new book and documentary chronicle 33-year history of America’s Essential Hospitals and its transition from National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems.

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Small Talk Survival Guide: VITAL2014 Edition

If you are an introvert like me, making small talk at next week’s VITAL2014 can be a source of angst. Especially because there will be a variety of people attending. Regardless of who you are and whom you straddle up next to in the buffet line, this guide will hopefully give you some conversation starters

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Experimenting with Solutions: Ideate and Prototype

Mark Richman

Safety-net organizations face numerous problems, each with many potential solutions. When thinking about solutions, it is helpful to have a framework of innovation. This installment of the blog discusses how to choose between solutions and how to operationalize them.

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The Good Kind of Viral

Amanda Walsh

Many of America’s Essential Hospitals have YouTube channels as a way to engage patients, employees, and the communities they serve through creative and dynamic ways.

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Innovating Care Transitions with Digital Apps

Khathy Hoang

This is the fifth blog in a series highlighting how the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services is helping patients better navigate their care.

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Essential Hospitals Make Hand Hygiene a Priority

Maya Linson, MS

Maintaining good hand hygiene is a key way to prevent the spread of infections. May 5 is World Hand Hygiene Day, an annual campaign led by the World Health Organization that aims to increase awareness of the role hand hygiene can play in reducing and preventing infections. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. hospital

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In Spirit of Transparency, Hospitals Post Physician Ratings Online

Maya Linson, MS

A recent article published in Kaiser Health News’ “Capsules” blog highlighted the trend of hospitals posting patient ratings of individual physicians on their websites. For decades, many hospitals have surveyed patients about their physicians. America’s Essential Hospitals member University of Utah Health Care was the first hospital to post these surveys on their own website, the

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How to Gather Stakeholder Feedback When Implementing an Innovation

Khathy Hoang

This is the fourth blog in a series highlighting how the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services is helping patients better navigate their care. Read part 1, part 2, and part 3. Olive View-UCLA Medical Center recently launched Prospective Action in Care Transitions (ProACT), an initiative that aims to inform patients’ patient-centered medical homes

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Boston Medical Center Remembers Marathon Bombing Victims

Maya Linson, MS

As one of the hospitals on the front lines of last year’s Boston Marathon bombings, America’s Essential Hospitals member Boston Medical Center (BMC) this year has taken several steps to honor victims of the tragedy. On April 15, 2013, two pressure cooker bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three and

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Members Took Action on Capitol Hill During our Spring Policy Assembly

Shawn Gremminger

Staff from our members held 100 meetings with their legislators to discuss what defines an essential hospital and the key issues facing essential hospitals including: protecting essential hospital payments, ensuring essential hospitals are included in health insurance marketplace networks, and preserving support for training future clinicians at essential hospitals.

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Bridging the Gap: Integrating Public Health and Health Care Systems

Population health has become a national priority in health care. Without much direction or guidance, providers are venturing into the unknown, developing programs and initiatives aimed at individuals’ overall health by targeting specific health outcomes. Hospitals, health systems, and clinics are changing the practice of medicine to accommodate the growing burden of chronic disease, while

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How Do You Ensure an Innovation is Effective?

Mark Richman

This is the third blog in a series highlighting how the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services is helping patients better navigate their care. Read part 1 and part 2. These days, we’re all pressured to prove our efforts are worth the investment. Essential hospitals, or those that serve a safety net role in their communities, are under

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Working Toward Health Equity During Minority Health Month and Beyond

Maya Linson, MS

America’s Essential Hospitals supports the efforts of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the thousands of individuals on the frontlines across the county to create a nation free of disparities in health and health care. We believe it is critically important to reduce the disproportionately high burden of illness, injury, and premature

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Tools for the Health Care Navigator

Mark Richman

In health care, patients discharged from rescue care – either the emergency department or inpatient settings – are frequently lost and lack information about their conditions, future studies, and appointments. If you could design the ideal toolkit to assist recently discharged patients navigate their post-discharge care, what would you include? First, you would want to

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The Importance of Continuing Education for Medical Interpreters

Eliana Lobo

The medical field is ever changing and evolving. So is the knowledge required of medical interpreters to do the job well. Breakthroughs in health care are discovered and introduced into mainstream care on a regular basis. These changes are not limited to terminology and treatments, but extend to an evolving code of ethics that reflects

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Study: Trauma Center Closures Raise Odds of Death for Injured Patients

Maya Linson, MS

Injured patients who live near shuttered trauma centers are more likely to die in the hospital, according to a study published today in the Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery by researchers at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), a member of America’s Essential Hospitals. About one-third of the nation’s 1,125 trauma centers,

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Intentional Uninsurance: Misguided and Unintentionally Selfish

Shawn Gremminger

Last year, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) announced that he would voluntarily go without health insurance, saying in a statement: “On January 1st, when millions of Americans will likely lose their employers’ contribution to their health insurance, I will refuse to receive that same subsidy. It also means I will have to pay a substantial penalty

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Roots of Disparities in Care Run Deep

Carl Graziano

Commentary from association president and CEO explores historical roots of care disparities

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Helping Patients Navigate Their Care

Mark Richman

“I’m lost. What city is this?” asked the traveler. “Вы – здесь,” the clerk replied. “I don’t understand.” “Москва” “Moscow? I overslept my train stop. I don’t know where I’m going, or how to get there. I don’t have a schedule, hotel reservations, a map, a Russian dictionary, or currency. I do have a splitting

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A Reason to Hope

Carolyn Brown

As a health care professional who is closer to the end of her career than the beginning, I am prone to view the current state of health care quality as a culmination of decades of strategies, collaborations, regulations, competition, legislative actions, and heuristic thinking swirling madly around the people who rely on us so greatly:

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Patient Safety Awareness Week 2014: Helping Patients Navigate Their Health

Maya Linson, MS

This week is Patient Safety Awareness Week (March 2-8), an annual campaign led by the National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF) to promote education and raise awareness around patient safety. According to NPSF, this year’s theme, “Navigate Your Health…Safely,” highlights why it is essential to engage patients and consumers in the health care process, regardless of

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With a Medicaid DSH Victory Comes a New Advocacy Agenda

Last year we saw a major legislative victory with a two-year delay of the Medicaid disproportionate share hospital (DSH) cuts. The fiscal year (FY) 2014 Joint Budget Resolution, signed into law on Dec. 26, 2013, included a provision to eliminate Medicaid DSH payment cuts in FY2014 and to delay FY 2015 cuts until FY 2016.

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Equity in Care Applies to Patient Safety

The commitment and work by America’s Essential Hospitals and its members to improve equity is nothing new. Last week, the Essential Hospitals Engagement Network (EHEN) hosted its third webinar as part of its Health Equity Series. The webinar featured Dr. Alexander Green, who spoke on using TeamSTEPPS communication training to improve patient safety for patients with limited

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Using Twitter with Purpose

Maya Linson, MS

Social media has become an important communications tool across all industries. Yet, this tool is only valuable when used with actionable goals. I know, this sounds daunting. But with a little guidance, you can leverage this tool to its greatest benefit. I often tell people to think of social media much like they think of

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Engage With Us: Welcome to the New essentialhospitals.org

Bruce Siegel, MD, MPH

Last year, our organization changed its name to better reflect what it is that binds our members: being mission-driven and dedicated to providing better and better care. The new essentialhospitals.org that you see today matches this new, strengthened identity. We surveyed all of our work and identified how we could better share our insights with

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EHEN Kicks Off 2014 Work With CEO Meeting

Maya Linson, MS

The Essential Hospitals Engagement Network (EHEN) this week launched their third year of work with a special kick-off meeting that convened CEOs and other clinical and administrative leaders from around the network. Progress to date The EHEN is our hospital engagement network through the national Partnership for Patients (PfP), which aims to reduce nine hospital-acquired

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Hospital Security and Patient and Family Centered Care

As the new chief of security at the Contra Costa Regional Medical Center, I have been included in leadership teams, planning committees and, recently, a patient and family partnership group. When I initially attended the meetings with patients and families, I wondered how security could play a role in patient and family centered care. Our

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At the Center of Care, This Patient Gives Back

Let me introduce myself. I am Carlos Benavides. My injury level is C2-T1 Incomplete Tetraplegic. After my surgery, I was looking for a rehab hospital. My doctors told me about Rancho Los Amigos Rehabilitation Hospital and the outstanding work they do there. Let me tell you a little bit about Rancho from firsthand experience. Rancho

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An Interdisciplinary Approach to Improving Care, Decreasing Hospital Stays

Mr. M is just 50 years old, but the year before our team met him he had been hospitalized 3 times, each admission caused by an exacerbation of a different chronic medical problem. And though he spent nearly a month of that year as an inpatient, he often missed his outpatient appointments, didn’t take his

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It’s Going to Take Time to Determine the Success of the New Marketplaces

The headlines have been dominated by news about problems with the new health insurance marketplaces since they opened over one month ago. There’s no doubt that the technical issues with the marketplace websites have been frustrating for both administrators and consumers, and have prevented people from enrolling in health insurance coverage. However, it’s important to

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Compassion in Action

The theme of this year’s Patient-Centered Care Awareness Month, celebrated every October, is “Compassion in Action.” I took the opportunity to reflect on Harbor-UCLA’s journey toward patient- and family-centered care. One of the pillars of the shared partnerships required for true patient- and family-centered care is mutual respect. This means respect between and among patients,

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Patient-Family Centered Care – From National to Local

Sharon Cross

As Patient and Family Centered Care (PFCC) month comes to a close, it is a good time to look back at what PFCC is and how patients and families can help organizations achieve a PFCC environment. The Institute for Patient and Family Centered Care defines PFCC as ”an approach to the planning, delivery, and evaluation

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Building Health Literacy Through Research and Practice

Health literacy has been identified as a priority area for national action in delivering health care and is critical to delivering high-quality, patient-centered care to diverse populations. Adults with limited health literacy experience more serious medication errors, higher rates of emergency room visits and hospitalizations, worse preventive care and health outcomes for their children, and

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Hennepin County Medical Center Prepared for Health Care Reform, Health Care Exchange Enrollment

With the big changes coming in health care, hospitals throughout the country have been preparing their patients and staff with communications about the Affordable Care Act, which requires all states to offer coverage through a new insurance exchange. Insurance exchanges are a one-stop web portal where individuals without insurance can shop for and purchase health

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America’s Essential Hospitals Fall Legislative Event Goes On Despite the Government Shut Down

America’s Essential Hospitals held a successful Fall Legislative Event October 1 and 2 despite the fact that Congress could not successfully keep the federal government running. As midnight hit on Oct. 1, the government officially shut down, but members of America’s Essential Hospitals got ready to advocate for their patients on Capitol Hill. Association members

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What Will Health Insurance Cost in the New Marketplaces?

With open enrollment in the new health insurance marketplaces less than a month away, there’s been a great deal of news about just how much health insurance plans are going to cost. Several reports have estimated how much premiums will cost, and several states have released information about their own premium costs. The U.S. Department

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New Studies Published on Financial Incentives for Providers

Two randomized trials of pay for performance (P4P) published last week in JAMA give more insight on using financial incentives to improve compliance with guideline-based practice. The first by Bardach et al. was done in small (<10 clinicians) primary care clinics in New York City, which was unlike most previous studies conducted in large health

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Hospitals, Communities Stand Strong 12 years After 9/11

Maya Linson, MS

On the 12th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, we remember those we lost, those who came to the rescue, and all of us who came together as a national and global community. Today, people all over are commemorating not the terror, but the strength and courage of humanity. Yet, it cannot go unnoticed

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Recognizing St. Luke’s Heroes As Wildfires Blaze

As wildfires continue to ravage the Western United States, Dr. David Pate, president and CEO of Boise, Idaho-based St. Luke’s Health System, recognized the dedication of staff members as they worked to respond to the community’s health needs. The original version of this post appeared on Dr. Pate’s blog, “Prescription for Change.” For more stories

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What Happens to Public Hospitals When States Don’t Expand Their Medicaid Programs?

The Affordable Care Act gave me hope that coverage expansion would be the law of the land: Young people are able to stay on their parents’ health insurance plans until they’re 26! People with pre-existing conditions can’t be denied coverage! More people will be eligible for Medicaid coverage! Sounds good, right? But it remains to

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Repeal or Not to Repeal: That Is The Question…

Amanda Walsh

My friends in the GOP are at a crossroads. The party once stood strong behind “Repeal, Repeal, Repeal!” in reference to the Affordable Care Act, but now that the Obama administration is recognizing some challenges in implementing the law, things have changed. Shawn Gremminger and I have been discussing this for over a year now.

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When Poor Communication Trumps Good Care

The age-old philosophical question, “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” has always reminded us the fact that objects of sense exist only when they are perceived. When it comes to health care, the relevant analogy is: If the best care or

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When Language Barriers Define the Experience of Care

In California’s public hospitals, over 50% of patients have limited English proficiency and it is expected that this percentage will only increase over the next several years. As a result, patient experience in the safety net will continue to be greatly influenced by language barriers; and the effectiveness of our care greatly dependent on the

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Achieving Equity In Care

Last month, the Essential Hospitals Engagement Network (EHEN), formerly the NAPH Safety Network, kicked off its health equity improvement work with a special webinar, “Achieving Equity in Care in the Safety Net.” The EHEN is the only Partnership for Patients (PfP) hospital engagement network (HEN) that is focusing exclusively on hospitals caring for the most

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Responding to the Crash: San Francisco General Treats Victims in Accident’s Aftermath

Maya Linson, MS

When Asiana Flight 214 crash landed at San Francisco International Airport on Saturday, local hospitals – including America’s Essential Hospitals member San Francisco General Hospital – went into disaster mode. The Boeing 777 aircraft reportedly crashed into the runway after the plane descended too slowly and its engines began to stall. The latest news reports

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Understanding Impending Medicare and Medicaid DSH Cuts

Shahid Zaman

America’s Essential Hospitals’ Assistant Vice President for Policy Xiaoyi Huang, Esq., and Deputy General Counsel Sarah Mutinsky, Esq., led an informative session at our 2013 annual conference on a subject of concern to essential hospitals—Medicare and Medicaid disproportionate share hospital (DSH) cuts. These programs are a critical source of funding for essential hospitals that provide

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Grady Heart Failure Program: Transforming Clinical Care Delivery

On Thursday, June 20, America’s Essential Hospitals announced the 2013 Gage Award Winners. The winners describe their innovative programs in this blog series. As a new graduate nurse practitioner I was fortunate to have the opportunity to join the new heart failure program at Grady Memorial Hospital, a 910-bed public academic hospital providing care to

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Time to Roll Up Our Sleeves

Zina Gontscharow

The clock is ticking – Oct. 1 is only 100 days away. That is when consumers will be able to purchase affordable insurance coverage through the health benefit exchanges. The exchanges, created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), will help an estimated 23 million people gain insurance coverage. States and the federal government have worked

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A Fresh Perspective

Amanda Walsh

Did you know that the United States spends $2.87 trillion on health care? To put it into even greater context, did you know that health care in the United States is larger than the French economy? To take it one step further, the U.S. federal government alone spends more on health care than the Swiss

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Join the Conversation: Raising Awareness About Mental Health Care

ThomasTraylor

I was honored this week to spend time with like-minded people for the White House’s forum on mental health, as a representative of NAPH and of all my fellow NAPH member hospitals and health systems. Over several hours, members of the administration and leading experts addressed the need for greater and easier access to mental

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An Organizational Approach to Reducing Patient Harm

The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) estimates that 15 million incidents of medical harm occur in U.S. hospitals each year. This estimate of overall national harm is based on IHI’s extensive experience in studying injury rates in hospitals, which reveals that between 40 and 50 incidents of patient harm occur for every 100 hospital admissions.

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Nurses: Strengthening Their ‘Roots’ Is Foundational

As a nursing leader and recent NAPH fellow, I would like to extend my thanks and appreciation to NAPH for their continued support for nurses and our nursing profession. As nurses, we are uniquely positioned to transform, lead and strengthen the health care reform agenda. I’d like to touch on the impact nurses have on

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Nurses Week 2013: A Major Professional Role Change

After almost 30 years of nursing and a suggestion by someone I dearly respect, I decided to blog for Nurses Week. First, a little history. Truth be told, I was never someone who dreamed of being a nurse as a little girl. It just never entered my mind. I graduated with a dual degree in

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Nurses Week 2013: Quality and Innovation in Care

Delivering quality and innovation in care is the American Nurses Association (ANA) theme for Nurses Week 2013. People do not always think of government as being the source of innovation. My organization is owned and operated by the County of Santa Clara, in the heart of Silicon Valley where innovation is in the air, where

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Showcasing Outstanding Emergency Nursing Care

For the first time, in 2011 the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) selected 20 hospitals to receive the inaugural Lantern Award. I was so excited to learn the University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital Emergency Department was named among the 20. The following year, eight more hospitals received this prestigious award. ENA has been setting standards for

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Nurses at UAB Hospital Spearhead Initiative to Improve Care for Geriatric Patients

As health care providers, we are being met with a challenge to provide evidence-based quality care in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible. We are also being faced with a growing population of geriatric patients, as the baby boomers turn 65 at a rate we have never experienced before. Our elderly patients present to

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The Role of the Nurse Executive in Today’s Health Care Environment

As a nurse executive there are many key challenges and opportunities that we face centered primarily around the Affordable Care Act and health care reform. The advent of value-based payments and the implications of not providing a great patient experience are significant. I believe that delivering the ideal patient experience in an environment of dwindling

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National Nurses Week: Celebrating RNs and Their Work

Maya Linson, MS

Today is the first day of National Nurses Week, an annual celebration that recognizes the value of nursing and educates the public about how registered nurses (RN) can advance innovation and improve the overall health care system. National Nurses Week runs from May 6 to May 12 annually, starting with RN Recognition Day and ending

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Defining the Role of Health Care Facilities in Providing Greater Access for Vulnerable Populations

Since the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, provisions are being enacted to increase opportunities for uninsured Americans to obtain insurance coverage. As more provisions of the legislation roll out during the next several years, mechanisms will be put into place to hopefully improve health care for all Americans as well. Nevertheless,

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In Bombs’ Wake, Boston Medical Center Docs Tell Their Story

Maya Linson, MS

As local hospitals continue to treat the victims of Monday’s double bombings at the Boston marathon, staff and other medical personnel have started to recount the scene after the blasts. We’ve been closely tracking hospital reports out of Boston, paying particular attention to our member hospital Boston Medical Center (BMC), a Level 1 trauma center

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NAPH Members Treat Victims of Boston Bombings

Maya Linson, MS

Two bombs detonated on Monday near the finish line of the 117th Boston marathon, killing at least three people and wounding dozens more. Immediately after the explosions, hospitals throughout Boston began treating injured runners, family members, and spectators. According to the Los Angeles Times, local hospitals treated more than 144 people hurt in the blasts.

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Defining the ED’s Role in a Changing Health Care Landscape

For more than a year, the NAPH Safety Network (NSN) has been working with 22 safety net hospitals to reduce preventable readmissions. The Partnership for Patients set our goal at a 20 percent reduction by the end of 2013 from a 2010 baseline. While we are still working to achieve this goal, many hospitals have

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Celebrating National Minority Health Month

This entry was originally posted on the HHS Office of Minority Health website. Fifty years ago this year, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial about the truths deeply rooted in our country’s creed: freedom, equality, and opportunity. “Now,” he declared, “is the time to make real the promises

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Helping Patients Make Healthy Food Choices

Maya Linson, MS

March is National Nutrition Month, an annual nutrition education and information campaign spearheaded by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that highlights how important it is to make informed food choices and develop health eating and exercise habits. In 2013 – the commemoration’s 40th anniversary – the month’s theme is “Eat Right, Your Way, Every

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Patient Safety Awareness Week: Primum Non Nocere

In recognition of Patient Safety Awareness Week (March 3-9), the NAPH Safety Network will feature posts from staff at member hospitals. The NAPH Safety Network is a Partnership for Patients hospital engagement network that aims to reduce nine preventable hospital-acquired conditions by 40 percent and 30-day readmissions by 20 percent by 2013. These Latin words,

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Sharing Patient Safety Stories at San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center

In recognition of Patient Safety Awareness Week (March 3-9), the NAPH Safety Network will feature posts from staff at member hospitals. The NAPH Safety Network is a Partnership for Patients hospital engagement network that aims to reduce nine preventable hospital-acquired conditions by 40 percent and 30-day readmissions by 20 percent by 2013. San Francisco General

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How Participating in the NSN Has Raised Awareness About Patient Safety Issues at SFGH

Thomas Holton

In recognition of Patient Safety Awareness Week (March 3-9), the NAPH Safety Network will feature posts from staff at member hospitals. The NAPH Safety Network is a Partnership for Patients hospital engagement network that aims to reduce nine preventable hospital-acquired conditions by 40 percent and 30-day readmissions by 20 percent by 2013. San Francisco General

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Patient Safety Awareness Week: Stories from the NAPH Safety Network

Maya Linson, MS

This week is Patient Safety Awareness Week (March 3-9, 2013), an annual campaign led by the National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF) to recognize efforts to improve patient safety and foster collaboration among health care organizations around the issue. According to NPSF, this year’s theme, “Patient Safety 7/365,” aims to remind “health care professionals and health

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Patient and Family Engagement: Fulfilling the Promises of Safety and Dignity

Last month, I attended a Health Affairs briefing that announced their February issue, which focused on patient and family engagement (PFE). Throughout the presentation, speakers extolled the potential benefits of effective patient and family engagement programs – one speaker cited a Forbes article calling PFE the “blockbuster drug” of the century. My “eureka moment” came

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Hospitals Healing Communities, One Patient at a Time

This blog is part of a month-long series from NAPH members addressing the relationship between gun violence and health care. Look for more posts this month covering issues from California to New York. Back in the early 1990s, following an incident with a young trauma victim who was having a particularly tough time, the medical

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Protecting Children From Gun Violence – Part Two, Mental Health

This blog is part of a month-long series from NAPH members addressing the relationship between gun violence and health care. Look for more posts this month covering issues from California to New York. Pediatricians and parents know that children are “unsafe at any speed.” Kids are endlessly curious and quickly become very adept at getting

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Protecting Children From Gun Violence – Part One, Research and Responsibilities

This blog is part of a month-long series from NAPH members addressing the relationship between gun violence and health care. Look for more posts this month covering issues from California to New York. As a pediatrician, parents look to me to help them raise their children to be as healthy and happy as possible and

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Gun Violence From the Health Care Perspective

Maya Linson, MS

Lawmakers and advocates are prepared to make gun violence a central issue for the State of the Union, according to many bloggers and journalists. Whether or not the issue takes center stage, many of us await new information from President Obama on plans to prevent gun violence nationwide. We at NAPH have the unique perspective

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Keeping the Safety Net In Mind Through Immigration Reform

Zina Gontscharow

As if Congress does not have enough on its plate these days, this week we saw the immigration debate heat up. A bipartisan group of eight Senators, four democrats and four republicans, held a press conference where they released a plan that would include a path to citizenship for some of the nation’s more than

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NAPH Safety Network Corner: A Look Back on Year One

Maya Linson, MS

Now that 2012 is coming to a close, it’s a fitting time to look back at what the NAPH Safety Network (NSN) has accomplished across the last year. Achieving the goals of the Partnership for Patients – reducing nine hospital-acquired conditions by 40 percent and 30-day readmissions by 20 percent by the end of 2013

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Testing on Arrival: HIV Screening in Maricopa Medical Center’s ED Prevents Transmission

Maya Linson, MS

Tomorrow is World AIDS Day, and this year’s theme is “Working Together for an AIDS-Free Generation.” According to the CDC, approximately 1.1 million U.S. residents are living with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and roughly 20 percent of them don’t know they have it. CDC statistics show that African Americans are the most acutely affected

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The ‘With Model’ of Patient and Family Engagement

As our national debate over health care reform continues, with its future, at least in part, likely to be shaped by the election, one thing is clear: There is consensus that we need to move to a more patient- and family-centered health care system. But the key question is how to do it and make

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NuHealth and Its Response to Hurricane Sandy

ArthurGianelli

I had the opportunity to speak with the editor of Newsday’s editorial page in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. She said, memorably, “We now know vulnerability.” How true. Intellectually, Long Islanders always knew that a major hurricane, if it hit the Island just the right way at just the right time of the month, had

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Surviving Hurricane Sandy: How NuHealth Ensured Patient Safety During the Storm

We were relieved NuHealth survived Hurricane Irene in 2011 – the “storm of the century” had grazed, but not injured, our health system, and we felt confident that we had another 100 years until a similar storm came by. Oops! Friday, Oct. 26, was the day our Sandy journey began. We spoke with the leadership

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Safety Net Hospitals Respond to Hurricane Sandy

Amanda Walsh

This week Hurricane Sandy caused substantial devastation along the East Coast, leaving many homes and communities in pieces. The same happened this past August when Hurricane Isaac hit the Gulf Coast. I know personally that when natural disasters hit many lives are forever changed and it is a considerably long road to recovery. As we

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Investing in Patient and Family Engagement for Better Health Care Delivery

Maya Linson, MS

Oct. 31 is Halloween, but it also marks the end of a relatively new awareness month for patient-centered care. Powered by Planetree, this observance of Patient-Centered Care Awareness Month commemorates our industry’s progress toward the reality of engaging patients and the community in their own care and to build momentum for further success. One NAPH

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Be Bold, Clear, Brave in Hospital Partnerships With Patients and Families

TeresaPasquini

Written to coincide with the national Patient-Centered Care Awareness Month, this personal story describes the approach of partnering with patient advisers at Contra Costa Regional Medical Center (CCRMC), in California. As chair of the Behavioral Healthcare Partnership, I was privileged to join our CEO, Anna Roth, in the CCRMC Redwood Grove recently as we welcomed

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The Patient Adviser Experience at The Ohio State University Medical Center Part 2

This is the second of two detailed experiences of patient advisers at The Ohio State University Medical Center (OSUMC), written to coincide with the national Patient-Centered Care Awareness Month. My experience of becoming an adviser was due to many health consequences, which has surrounded my life the past 13 years. I am a single mother

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The Patient Adviser Experience at The Ohio State University Medical Center

This is the first of two detailed experiences of patient advisers at The Ohio State University Medical Center (OSUMC), written to coincide with the national Patient-Centered Care Awareness Month. Peter Labita is a cancer survivor who told his story to OSUMC hospital staff, who then recruited him to spearhead a new patient advisory council. He

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Finding a Cure for Election Fatigue

Amanda Walsh

If you are following the presidential race, it has gotten dirty. In the Washington D.C. metro area we are bombarded by attack ads one right after the other. If you are like me, you must be tired of both parties taking spinning quotes and sound clips out of context. The back and forth, the insults,

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NAPH Safety Network Corner: Regional Collaborative Recap

Maya Linson, MS

The NAPH Safety Network last week completed its last of three regional collaborative and leadership summit events in Los Angeles, Calif. At the regional collaborative, frontline staff and improvement teams learned about improvement science, health equity and change packages for each of the 10 conditions targeted by the Partnership for Patients. Meanwhile, at the leadership

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NAPH Members a Glimpse of Light When Tragedy Strikes

Sandy Laycox, MFA

Tragedy is often unexpected. We don’t plan or prepare to face a masked shooter stalking the aisles of a darkened movie theater. Often, victims of this type of violence can only react and do their best to survive. And while there is little light at the end of this tunnel, a brief glimpse can be

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NAPH Safety Network Corner: Finding Inspiration in ‘The Waiting Room’

As part of our NAPH Safety Network (NSN) regional collaborative meetings and leadership summits, we have had the opportunity to screen “The Waiting Room,” a documentary filmed at Alameda County Medical Center’s Highland Hospital – one of our participating NSN safety net hospitals. The film takes place over the course of 24 hours in Highland’s

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“Waste Is Disrespectful”: The Value of Lean

Sandy Laycox, MFA

Writing for the Institute of Medicine’s Learning Health System Commentary Series, Denver Health Chief Executive Officer Patricia A. Gabow, MD, discusses the value of using Lean processes to reduce costs and improve quality. “While Lean’s roots are embedded in the automobile industry and manufacturing, the philosophy and toolset fits with health care,” Gabow says. The

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NAPH Safety Network Corner: Utilize Your Burning Platform to Transform Care

Yesterday, the first of three regional collaborative meetings kicked off in Chicago, IL with a heartfelt keynote address by Dr.Rishi Sikka. Dr. Sikka is Vice President of Clinical Transformation at Advocate Health Care in Chicago. To achieve quality transformation that is not evanescent, Dr. Sikka believes it is vital to tap into what he refers

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Moving the Health Reform Conversation Forward To Better Serve Patients

JohnHaupert

For safety net hospitals like Grady Health System in Atlanta and the patients we serve, the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is a good outcome. The millions of individuals who have experienced limited access to needed health care services will benefit greatly. Our hope is that improved access

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VCU Health System CEO Visits NAPH, Offers Direct View Into the Life of a Safety Net

Sandy Laycox, MFA

Several NAPH staff had the recent pleasure of meeting with one of our newest executive committee members, Sheldon M. Retchin, MD, MSPH, chief executive officer of Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Health System and vice president for health sciences at VCU. In a candid conversation, Retchin shared with us VCU’s successes and challenges as a safety

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Supreme Court Broadens Coverage, But Not Far Enough

Bruce Siegel, MD, MPH

Yesterday the Supreme Court handed down a long-awaited decision on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that will reverberate throughout the nation for months and years to come. That the justices upheld the law and the individual mandate is a positive step toward better health for many people. This broad expansion of health care coverage will

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Verghese Pulls Us Back to the Patient, Away From the Screen

Sandy Laycox, MFA

NAPH members gathered this morning for the 2012 Annual Conference opening session to hear from a man who was shaped by a rural public hospital on the Tennessee border. “I cut my teeth there. I admire your mission and am honored to be here today,” said Abraham Verghese, MD, MACP. Verghese is far from his

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Defining – and Driving – Patient Engagement

This post was co-authored with Liz Boehm, Director, Patient Experience Collaborative at ExperiaHealth. When we look at today’s healthcare environment, it’s very clear that we have a problem – rising costs and pressure to keep them contained, the increasing prevalence of long-term chronic diseases, and a healthcare workforce that is struggling to stay connected to

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Patient Centeredness

As stated by Dr. Berwick, “Patient-centeredness is a dimension of health care quality in its own right, …[it] will involve some radical, unfamiliar, and disruptive shifts in control and power, out of the hands of those who give care and into the hands of those who receive it.” Patient and family engagement is very important

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Advancing the Hospital Experience for Patients and Staff

Ten improvement teams from California public hospital systems spent the past eight months working to advance the experience of patients and staff in specific units or service lines. Led by the California Health Care Safety Net Institute (SNI), the teams were members of the Patient Experience Transformation (PExT) Action Collaborative, a unique effort in the

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Health and Health Care TOGETHER

Patient- and family-centered care is, finally, accelerating. Activities are broad-based, with those we are privileged to serve—patients, family members, public, communities—front and center. The recent international meeting of the Institute for Patient and Family Centered Care demonstrated this brilliantly. The approximately 1,000 attendees included patients and family members (about 250), health care staff and leaders,

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Improving Care Together: How Patients and Family Members are Driving Improvement at CCRMC

Anna Roth

Each day we are learning more about the value of including patients and families from the teams who have partnered with them in decision making, design and testing of improvements. We have discovered that we have much to learn from those who use our system and that both patients and family members are essential and

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NAPH Safety Network Corner: Spurring Change Through Innovation

Maya Linson, MS

This week, I – and the rest of the NAPH Safety Network team – attended a hospital engagement network meeting hosted by the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Partnership for Patients. The meeting offered several sessions on hospital improvement strategies and innovative approaches to tackling the 10 conditions targeted by the national initiative.

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Social Media is Now Business as Usual

Maya Linson, MS

My favorite takeaway from a recent conference I attended came from hospital social media guru Ed Bennett – that social media is business as usual. Many folks remember when TV was “new media,” and look what happened with that! If you aren’t using, adapting, leveraging social media, then you are missing a piece of the

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Let’s Talk About System Redesign in the Safety Net

Bruce Siegel, MD, MPH

Industry opinion leaders define system redesign as improvement work that promotes alignment and synergy among quality improvement efforts and seeks to create changes that are well aligned across units and conditions. System redesign thus involves coordinated, multi-dimensional changes in the management and delivery of care. The issue is of critical importance as the U.S. health

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Critical to Care: Honoring Nurses and Their Work

Maya Linson, MS

This week marks National Nurses Week, a celebration that aims to recognize the value of nursing and educate U.S. residents about the role registered nurses (RNs) play in meeting the country’s health care needs. National Nurses Week runs from May 6 to May 12 annually, starting with RN Recognition Day and ending on the birthday

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Medicare Makes Their Own Cost Atlas

For a long time if you wanted to know how health care costs varied by region or hospital you would turn to the Dartmouth Atlas. Last month CMS made a second reference publically available through Hospital Compare in the form of a Medicare Spending per Beneficiary (MSPB) measure. MSPB is a ratio that compares the

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Stay the Course Toward Better Health Care Quality

Aaron Byzak

The politics, business and delivery of health care underwent a permanent, seismic shift in 2010. Whether or not you are a supporter of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), there is little debate that it was a game changer. It altered the way in which we as a country approach the challenges we have faced for

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Reforming Minority Health

Bruce Siegel, MD, MPH

Last week, the Beltway crowd was transfixed by the Supreme Court arguments. Phrases like “severability” and “blessings of liberty” were tossed back and forth as the fate of the largest piece of social legislation since Social Security was being decided. At times it seemed more about the intricacies of the Commerce Clause and legal precedents,

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Improving How We Experience Health Care

Bruce Siegel, MD, MPH

The U.S. Supreme Court finished hearing arguments for and against our nation’s landmark health reform law and now the arguments will play out behind closed doors. As I see it, there are three possible outcomes: Reform moves forward fully intact. Reform moves forward without increased coverage to manage illness and care. Or reform simply goes

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Innovations in VBAC at Contra Costa Regional Medical Center

Anna Roth

I’m so pleased to report on our perinatal unit’s success in reducing repeat cesarean sections, which is being accomplished through its innovative program called the “Vaginal Birth after Cesarean (VBAC) Improvement Project.” This effort received the Quality Leaders Top Honors Award from the California Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems (CAPH) and its quality

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Safety Net Health Systems Lead Transformation

The fate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) hangs in the balance. This week the United States Supreme Court is expected to make several historic decisions about the constitutionality of the ACA and clearly those decisions are critically important. But as health policy experts and constitutional scholars weigh in, safety net health systems in California

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Palliative Care in California Public Hospitals: Getting to 100%

Back in 2007, when the California HealthCare Foundation (CHCF) published its report on the state of palliative care services in California hospitals, we found positive evidence that California was keeping up with national trends: 43% of California hospitals provided palliative care services. But the report also contained discouraging news – of the state’s 17 acute

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Insights Regarding the Care Continuity Workforce

Shauna Roberts, MD, CPE, is presenting along with several other quality leaders at an NAPH press event announcing the release of a special safety net-focused edition of the Journal for Healthcare Quality on March 15, 2012. In our article, Addressing Social Determinants to Improve Health Care Quality and Reduce Cost, in the March/April issue of

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Art for Care: An Innovative Safety Net Exchange

Sandy Laycox, MFA

Research has shown the healing power of art, and our member hospitals have developed creative programs in which they utilize art in a variety of forms to enhance patient healing, staff satisfaction and community partnerships. Many of the local artists involved in these programs gain important benefits such as exposure for their work and the opportunity to

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St. Luke’s Is “Open for Innovators”

Sandy Laycox, MFA

St. Luke’s Health System is opening a new Wood River facility to serve its community – but not in typical, clinical fashion. Described as a “living laboratory” in a recent TechCrunch post, St. Luke’s Center for Healthcare Innovation will serve as a host for innovative health technology. Using a venture philanthropy approach, St. Luke’s leadership

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World AIDS Day underscores health care needs at home

Maya Linson, MS

Today is World AIDS Day and this year it’s about “Getting to Zero” – Zero New HIV Infections. Zero Discrimination and Zero AIDS Related Deaths. Backed by the United Nations, the “Getting to Zero” campaign runs until 2015 and builds on last year’s successful World AIDS Day “Light for Rights” initiative encompassing a range of

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Safety Net Health Systems are Keeping America Healthy and Working

Zina Gontscharow

It is an exciting day at NAPH – our President and Chief Executive Officer Bruce Siegel, MD, is in New York City to make an announcement about jobs and the economy supported by the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) and safety net hospitals around the country. At this event, Dr. Siegel will

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The Mission of the Safety Net Extends to Haiti

Maya Linson, MS

Amid all of the news about the devastation that remains in Haiti one year later, I came across this incredible story from one of our member hospitals – LSU in New Orleans, La. NBC “Dateline” actually featured Mitch Handrich, RN, a MICU staff nurse at the Interim LSU Public Hospital, as part of a volunteer

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Involving Patients and Families Improves Patient Safety and Quality

Developing tools that change the “way we do things”; tools that push us into partnering with patients and families is our desire. We all tasted the “Patient and Family Centered Care Tonic” and understand that supporting Patient and Family Centered Care improves the Safety and Quality of the care we deliver. Professing involvement of patients

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Social Media for the C-Suite

Maya Linson, MS

I am often asked why social media is important or why someone should bother spending time with it … Mashable posted a great set of articles targeting the C-Suite specifically, and I wanted to pull some of the main points out that directly apply to hospital and health system CEOs and other C-Suite leaders. First,

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Public Health and Digital Innovation

Maya Linson, MS

I was lucky enough to serve on a panel recently on how digital media is helping advance public health. Susannah Fox from Pew Research discussed the impact of digital media on chronic disease (among other things), I spoke about how our members are using social media, and Erin Enke from event organizer/health care communications firm

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How Can a Hospital Use Social Media? Let me Count the Ways…

Maya Linson, MS

I came across an article in Mashable that outlines how hospitality companies are using social media “for real results.” Though hospitals are not generally aligned with hotels and cafés in terms of industry, the health care industry certainly shares some key attributes. In fact, that shared space involves hosting, catering to and entertaining (in a

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CDC is going viral … via social media

Maya Linson, MS

In a recent story out of Federal Computer Week, I learned that the CDC’s director of the Division of eHealth Marketing is promoting the use of social media among CDC departments and other federal agencies. Speaking on a panel at an AFFIRM event in DC, Director Janice Nall said the CDC needs to go where

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Live from St. Vincent…Part 2

Seen by excellent ER doctor at about 10:30 (ok, so someone told them I’m here—probably not the norm for a busy ER). I’m told St. Vincent is now on diversion (hope I didn’t cause that). Need X-ray but news ain’t great—kneecap probably shattered. (Existential question: Can I violate my own HIPAA confidentiality?) ER suddenly calmer.

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Live from the St. Vincent ER!

9:45 AM. Fell crossing 5th Ave like a true New Yorker (too quickly and late for a meeting). Blew out knee. Really embarrassing — lying in the middle of the road for a few seconds unable to move or stand. Crowd gathered quickly. One man who seemed to know what he was doing straightened my

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Get Social (Media)

Maya Linson, MS

Everyone hears about it, many people scoff at it, some people just can’t live without it: Twitter. About 30 of our members have hospital accounts with handles like @WestchesterMed and @Parklandhealth. Hospitals are turning to social media (Twitter, Facebook. YouTube, etc.) to better connect with patients, staff and the larger community. The benefits range from

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Essential Hospitals @OurHospitals
#EHRs will be more useful & save more lives thx to @UChicagoMed, @Google, & researchers like @mdhowellmd – learn how https://t.co/lrarLiBIvB
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5% of US hospitals provide 17% of uncomp care – #DSH cuts would devastate #essentialhospitals & their services… https://t.co/q40Kp9Nd9p