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Sample records for affordable quality health

  1. Achieving health care affordability.

    PubMed

    Payson, Norman C

    2002-10-01

    Not all plans are jumping headlong into the consumer-centric arena. In this article, the CEO of Oxford Health Plans discusses how advanced managed care can achieve what other consumer-centric programs seek to do--provide affordable, quality health care. PMID:12391815

  2. Do Quiet Areas Afford Greater Health-Related Quality of Life than Noisy Areas?

    PubMed Central

    Shepherd, Daniel; Welch, David; Dirks, Kim N.; McBride, David

    2013-01-01

    People typically choose to live in quiet areas in order to safeguard their health and wellbeing. However, the benefits of living in quiet areas are relatively understudied compared to the burdens associated with living in noisy areas. Additionally, research is increasingly focusing on the relationship between the human response to noise and measures of health and wellbeing, complementing traditional dose-response approaches, and further elucidating the impact of noise and health by incorporating human factors as mediators and moderators. To further explore the benefits of living in quiet areas, we compared the results of health-related quality of life (HRQOL) questionnaire datasets collected from households in localities differentiated by their soundscapes and population density: noisy city, quiet city, quiet rural, and noisy rural. The dose-response relationships between noise annoyance and HRQOL measures indicated an inverse relationship between the two. Additionally, quiet areas were found to have higher mean HRQOL domain scores than noisy areas. This research further supports the protection of quiet locales and ongoing noise abatement in noisy areas. PMID:23535280

  3. 78 FR 69418 - Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Exchanges and Qualified Health Plans, Quality Rating...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-11-19

    ... Plans; Exchange Standards for Employers, 77 FR 18310 (Mar. 27, 2012) (to be codified at 45 CFR parts 155... Quality for Exchanges: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-11-27/pdf/2012-28473.pdf . Importance: the... Rule 78 FR 12834 (Feb. 25, 2013) (to be codified at 45 CFR parts 147, 155 and 156). The draft...

  4. To provide affordable, quality health care for all Americans and reduce the growth in health care spending, and for other purposes.

    THOMAS, 111th Congress

    Rep. Dingell, John D. [D-MI-15

    2009-07-14

    10/14/2009 Placed on the Union Calendar, Calendar No. 168. (All Actions) Notes: For further action, see H.R.3590, which became Public Law 111-148 on 3/23/2010. H.R.3590, often referred to as the Affordable Care Act, is the bill that became the health care reform law. Tracker: This bill has the status IntroducedHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  5. America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009

    THOMAS, 111th Congress

    Rep. Dingell, John D. [D-MI-15

    2009-07-14

    10/14/2009 Placed on the Union Calendar, Calendar No. 168. (All Actions) Notes: For further action, see H.R.3590, which became Public Law 111-148 on 3/23/2010. H.R.3590, often referred to as the Affordable Care Act, is the bill that became the health care reform law. Tracker: This bill has the status IntroducedHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  6. Affordability of the Health Expenditures of Insured Americans Before the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Nyman, John A; Trenz, Helen M

    2016-02-01

    Central to the Affordable Care Act is the notion of affordability and the role of health insurance in making otherwise unaffordable health care affordable. We used data from the 1996 to 2008 versions of the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey to estimate the portion of overall health care expenditures by insured respondents that would otherwise have been beyond their disposable incomes and assets. We found that about one third of insured expenditures would have been unaffordable, with a much higher percentage among publicly insured individuals. This result suggests that one of the main functions of insurance is to cover expenses that insured individuals would not otherwise be able to afford. PMID:26691116

  7. Setting a standard of affordability for health insurance coverage.

    PubMed

    Blumberg, Linda J; Holahan, John; Hadley, Jack; Nordahl, Katharine

    2007-01-01

    Recently, Massachusetts passed landmark legislation designed to expand health insurance coverage. This legislation includes a requirement that all adults enroll in a health insurance plan. This mandate takes effect only if an "affordable" plan is available. The definition of affordability for individuals and families of different incomes or circumstances is a critical decision in implementation and is relevant to any state or federal reform requiring individual premium or cost-sharing contributions, or both. This analysis was done to assist the policy design process in Massachusetts and delineates an empirically based approach to setting affordability standards. PMID:17548341

  8. The ethics of the affordability of health insurance.

    PubMed

    Saloner, Brendan; Daniels, Norman

    2011-10-01

    In this essay we argue that the concept of affordable health insurance is rooted in a social obligation to protect fair equality of opportunity. Specifically, health insurance plays a limited but significant role in protecting opportunity in two ways: it helps keep people functioning normally and it protects their financial security. Together these benefits enable household members to exercise reasonable choices about their plans of life. To achieve truly affordable coverage, society must be able to contain the overall cost of health care, and health insurance must be progressively financed, meaning that those who are best able to pay for coverage should pay the largest share. While the recently passed Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) falls short on both of these counts, we argue that it makes important contributions toward household affordability through the use of subsidies and regulations. The main shortcoming of the ACA is an insufficient protection against burdensome cost sharing, which we illustrate using several hypothetical scenarios. We conclude with recommendations about how to make opportunity-enhancing expansions to the current coverage subsidies. PMID:22065686

  9. Balancing adequacy and affordability?: Essential Health Benefits under the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Haeder, Simon F

    2014-12-01

    The Essential Health Benefits provisions under the Affordable Care Act require that eligible plans provide coverage for certain broadly defined service categories, limit consumer cost-sharing, and meet certain actuarial value requirements. Although the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) was tasked with the regulatory development of these EHB under the ACA, the department quickly devolved this task to the states. Not surprisingly, states fully exploited the leeway provided by HHS, and state decision processes and outcomes differed widely. However, none of the states took advantage of the opportunity to restructure fundamentally their health insurance markets, and only a very limited number of states actually included sophisticated policy expertise in their decisionmaking processes. As a result, and despite a major expansion of coverage, the status quo ex ante in state insurance markets was largely perpetuated. Decisionmaking for the 2016 revisions should be transparent, included a wide variety of stakeholders and policy experts, and focus on balancing adequacy and affordability. However, the 2016 revisions provide an opportunity to address these previous shortcomings. PMID:25316210

  10. Health Care Affordability: How to Make It a Reality.

    PubMed

    Rotarius, Timothy; Liberman, Aaron

    2015-01-01

    Health care is a big business. US health care expenditures reached $2.9 trillion in 2013. Patient spending accounted for 28% of the total, which means patients spent approximately $810 billion in 2013 for insurance premiums, deductibles, copays, coinsurance, and noncovered health care services. How are patients expected to pay almost a trillion dollars in health care expenses? There is a need to find a health care financing methodology that will make health care affordable for all patients and families. An alternative method for funding health care is discussed that includes creating a government-funded annuity during the first decade of one's life. When this annuity matures later in life, many individuals will have amassed a large pot of money with which to pay for their (and their family's) health care treatment and products. PMID:26506289

  11. Behavioral health parity and the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Frank, Richard G; Beronio, Kirsten; Glied, Sherry A

    2014-01-01

    Prior to the passage of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), about 49 million Americans were uninsured. Among those with employer-sponsored health insurance, 2% had coverage that entirely excluded mental health benefits and 7% had coverage that entirely excluded substance use treatment benefits. The rates of noncoverage for mental and substance use disorder care in the individual health insurance markets are considerably higher. Private health insurance generally limits the extent of these benefits. The combination of MHPEA and ACA extended overall health insurance coverage to more people and expanded the scope of coverage to include mental health and substance abuse benefits. PMID:24483783

  12. The Affordable Care Act: the ethical call for value-based leadership to transform quality.

    PubMed

    Piper, Llewellyn E

    2013-01-01

    Hospitals in America face a daunting and historical challenge starting in 2013 as leadership navigates their organizations toward a new port of call-the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Known as the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law in March 2010 and held in abeyance waiting on 2 pivotal points-the Supreme Court's June 2012 ruling upholding the constitutionality of the ACA and the 2012 presidential election of Barack Obama bringing to reality to health care organizations that leadership now must implement the mandates of health care delivery under the ACA. This article addresses the need for value-based leadership to transform the culture of health care organizations in order to be successful in navigating uncharted waters under the unprecedented challenges for change in the delivery of quality health care. PMID:23903938

  13. Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities and the Affordable Care Act: a Status Update.

    PubMed

    Sealy-Jefferson, Shawnita; Vickers, Jasmine; Elam, Angela; Wilson, M Roy

    2015-12-01

    Persistent racial and ethnic health disparities exist in the USA, despite decades of research and public health initiatives. Several factors contribute to health disparities, including (but not limited to) implicit provider bias, access to health care, social determinants, and biological factors. Disparities in health by race/ethnicity are unacceptable and correctable. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is a comprehensive legislation that is focused on improving health care access, quality, and cost control. This health care reform includes specific provisions which focus on preventive care, the standardized collection of data on race, ethnicity, primary language and disability status, and health information technology. Although some provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act have not been implemented, such as funding for the U.S. Public Health Sciences track, which would have addressed the shortage of medical professionals in the USA who are trained to use patient-centered, interdisciplinary, and care coordination approaches, this legislation is still poised to make great strides toward eliminating health disparities. The purpose of this manuscript is to highlight the unprecedented opportunities that exist for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in health in the USA. PMID:26668787

  14. 77 FR 70643 - Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Standards Related to Essential Health Benefits...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-11-26

    ... Protection and Affordable Care Act; Standards Related to Essential Health Benefits, Actuarial Value, and... Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Standards Related to Essential Health Benefits, Actuarial... Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation...

  15. The Affordable Care Act, health care reform, prescription drug formularies and utilization management tools.

    PubMed

    Ung, Brian L; Mullins, C Daniel

    2015-01-01

    The U.S. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (hence, Affordable Care Act, or ACA) was signed into law on March 23, 2010. Goals of the ACA include decreasing the number of uninsured people, controlling cost and spending on health care, increasing the quality of care provided, and increasing insurance coverage benefits. This manuscript focuses on how the ACA affects pharmacy benefit managers and consumers when they have prescriptions dispensed. PBMs use formularies and utilization control tools to steer drug usage toward cost-effective and efficacious agents. A logic model was developed to explain the effects of the new legislation. The model draws from peer-reviewed and gray literature commentary about current and future U.S. healthcare reform. Outcomes were identified as desired and undesired effects, and expected unintended consequences. The ACA extends health insurance benefits to almost 32 million people and provides financial assistance to those up to 400% of the poverty level. Increased access to care leads to a similar increase in overall health care demand and usage. This short-term increase is projected to decrease downstream spending on disease treatment and stunt the continued growth of health care costs, but may unintentionally exacerbate the current primary care physician shortage. The ACA eliminates limitations on insurance and increases the scope of benefits. Online health care insurance exchanges give patients a central location with multiple insurance options. Problems with prescription drug affordability and control utilization tools used by PBMs were not addressed by the ACA. Improving communication within the U.S. healthcare system either by innovative health care delivery models or increased usage of health information technology will help alleviate problems of health care spending and affordability. PMID:25217142

  16. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; establishment of exchanges and qualified health plans; exchange standards for employers. Final rule, Interim final rule.

    PubMed

    2012-03-27

    This final rule will implement the new Affordable Insurance Exchanges ("Exchanges"), consistent with title I of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, referred to collectively as the Affordable Care Act. The Exchanges will provide competitive marketplaces for individuals and small employers to directly compare available private health insurance options on the basis of price, quality, and other factors. The Exchanges, which will become operational by January 1, 2014, will help enhance competition in the health insurance market, improve choice of affordable health insurance, and give small businesses the same purchasing clout as large businesses. PMID:22479737

  17. Hospital and Health Plan Partnerships: The Affordable Care Act's Impact on Promoting Health and Wellness

    PubMed Central

    Vu, Michelle; White, Annesha; Kelley, Virginia P.; Hopper, Jennifer Kuca; Liu, Cathy

    2016-01-01

    Background The Affordable Care Act (ACA) healthcare reforms, centered on achieving the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Triple Aim goals of improving patient care quality and satisfaction, improving population health, and reducing costs, have led to increasing partnerships between hospitals and insurance companies and the implementation of employee wellness programs. Hospitals and insurance companies have opted to partner to distribute the risk and resources and increase coordination of care. Objective To examine the ACA's impact on the health and wellness programs that have resulted from the joint ventures of hospitals and health plans based on the published literature. Method We conducted a review of the literature to identify successful mergers and best practices of health and wellness programs. Articles published between January 2007 and January 2015 were compiled from various search engines, using the search terms “corporate,” “health and wellness program,” “health plan,” “insurance plan,” “hospital,” “joint venture,” and “vertical merger.” Publications that described consolidations or wellness programs not tied to health insurance plans were excluded. Noteworthy characteristics of these programs were summarized and tabulated. Results A total of 44 eligible articles were included in the analysis. The findings showed that despite rising healthcare costs, joint ventures prevent hospitals from trading-off quality and services for cost reductions. Administrators believed that partnering would allow the companies to meet ACA standards for improving clinical outcomes at reduced costs. Before the implementation of the ACA, some employers had wellness programs, but these were not standardized and did not need to produce measurable results. The ACA encouraged improvement of employee wellness programs by providing funding for expanded health services and by mandating quality care. Successful workplace health and wellness

  18. A research agenda to promote affordable and quality assured medicines

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Promoting generic medicines to increase access to essential medicines is relevant to achieve the Millennium Development Goal (MDGs) and post 2015 goals. There are several barriers to encouraging wider use of generic medicines in health systems, e.g. the widely-held perception that low price equals low quality and misalignment of provider and consumer incentives. Overcoming the complex barriers and other challenges can be re-formulated as a ‘generic medicine evidence-based policy agenda’: (1) What policy and strategies can increase consumer trust in the quality of all medicines granted market authority including generic products? (2) Are there differences in prices between branded and unbranded generics? (3) What are synergies between policies that can enhance promoting of generic medicines effectively? Evaluating the policies promoting generic medicines will be critical to create evidence that countries can use to implement policies in their local settings. PMID:25848542

  19. Health Outcomes and Green Renovation of Affordable Housing

    PubMed Central

    Breysse, Jill; Jacobs, David E.; Weber, William; Dixon, Sherry; Kawecki, Carol; Aceti, Susan; Lopez, Jorge

    2011-01-01

    Objective This study sought to determine whether renovating low-income housing using “green” and healthy principles improved resident health and building performance. Methods We investigated resident health and building performance outcomes at baseline and one year after the rehabilitation of low-income housing using Enterprise Green Communities green specifications, which improve ventilation; reduce moisture, mold, pests, and radon; and use sustainable building products and other healthy housing features. We assessed participant health via questionnaire, provided Healthy Homes training to all participants, and measured ventilation, carbon dioxide, and radon. Results Adults reported statistically significant improvements in overall health, asthma, and non-asthma respiratory problems. Adults also reported that their children's overall health improved, with significant improvements in non-asthma respiratory problems. Post-renovation building performance testing indicated that the building envelope was tightened and local exhaust fans performed well. New mechanical ventilation was installed (compared with no ventilation previously), with fresh air being supplied at 70% of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers standard. Radon was <2 picocuries per liter of air following mitigation, and the annual average indoor carbon dioxide level was 982 parts per million. Energy use was reduced by 45% over the one-year post-renovation period. Conclusions We found significant health improvements following low-income housing renovation that complied with green standards. All green building standards should include health requirements. Collaboration of housing, public health, and environmental health professionals through integrated design holds promise for improved health, quality of life, building operation, and energy conservation. PMID:21563714

  20. Affording Housing at the Expense of Health: Exploring the Housing and Neighborhood Strategies of Poor Families

    PubMed Central

    Hernández, Diana

    2016-01-01

    Low-income families often simultaneously encounter housing and neighborhood problems pertaining to safety, affordability, and quality issues that necessitate strategies to maximize limited budgets and ensure safety. Such constrained decisions regarding inadequate housing and poor neighborhood conditions, however, may themselves create or exacerbate health risks. Building on the survival strategies literature, this article offers rich and detailed accounts of coping and management strategies on the part of vulnerable families facing housing and neighborhood hardships. The findings are based on in-depth interviews with 72 respondents and ethnographic observations in an urban community. The results illustrate how low-income women avoid neighborhood danger by relegating family life to the home environment, thereby increasing exposure to health risks such as stress, depression, and asthma. The discussion focuses on public health literature linking housing and health and proposes the use of legal strategies and community engagement as resources to complement current approaches to housing and neighborhood problems. PMID:27057078

  1. National workplace health promotion surveys: the Affordable Care Act and future surveys.

    PubMed

    DeJoy, David M; Dyal, Mari-Amanda; Padilla, Heather M; Wilson, Mark G

    2014-01-01

    This commentary reviews findings from the four previous national surveys of workplace health promotion activities (1985, 1992, 1999, and 2004, respectively) and offers recommendations for future surveys mandated under the Affordable Care Act of 2010. Future surveys should place greater emphasis on assessing program quality, reach, and effectiveness. Both employer and employee input should be sought. In addition, sampling plans should differentiate worksites from employers, and results should include public as well as private sector organizations. Ideas are offered for addressing these limitations and for creating a sustainable survey process and multifunctional database of results. PMID:24380423

  2. Quality or Affordability: Trade-Offs for Early Childhood Programs? ERIC Digest.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Willer, Barbara

    The demand for child care services in the United States continues to grow, stretching the levels of program quality to the limit. In fact, the country is facing a crisis in child care. Affordable child care continues to be a major issue for many families. Solutions to the current crisis in child care must, in addition to insuring affordability,…

  3. The Politics of Native American Health Care and the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Skinner, Daniel

    2016-02-01

    This article examines an important but largely overlooked dimension of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), namely, its significance for Native American health care. The author maintains that reading the ACA against the politics of Native American health care policy shows that, depending on their regional needs and particular contexts, many Native Americans are well-placed to benefit from recent Obama-era reforms. At the same time, the kinds of options made available by the ACA constitute a departure from the service-based (as opposed to insurance-based) Indian Health Service (IHS). Accordingly, the author argues that ACA reforms--private marketplaces, Medicaid expansion, and accommodations for Native Americans--are best read as potential "supplements" to an underfunded IHS. Whether or not Native Americans opt to explore options under the ACA will depend in the long run on the quality of the IHS in the post-ACA era. Beyond understanding the ACA in relation to IHS funding, the author explores how Native American politics interacts with the key tenets of Obama-era health care reform--especially "affordability"--which is critical for understanding what is required from and appropriate to future Native American health care policy making. PMID:26567380

  4. 78 FR 15553 - Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Establishment of Exchanges and Qualified Health Plans...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-03-11

    ... Care Act; Establishment of Exchanges and Qualified Health Plans; Proposed Rule, 76 FR 41866 (July 15...) Requirements Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Interim Final Rule, 75 FR 74864, 74918-20... of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and Education...

  5. Why India should become a global leader in high-quality, affordable TB diagnostics.

    PubMed

    Small, Peter

    2012-05-01

    The scale up of DOTS in India is one of the greatest public health accomplishments, and yet undiagnosed and poorly managed TB continues to fuel the epidemic such that India continues to have the highest number of TB cases in the world. Recognizing these challenges, the Government of India has set an ambitious goal of providing universal access to quality diagnosis and treatment for all TB patients in the country. Innovative tools and delivery systems in both the public and private sectors are essential for reaching this goal. Fortunately, India has the potential to solve its TB problem with "home-grown" solutions. Just as Indian pharmaceutical companies revolutionized access to high-quality, affordable AIDS drugs through generic production, Indian diagnostic companies could also become the world's hub for high-quality generic diagnostics. In the long term, India has the potential to lead the world in developing innovative TB diagnostics. For this to happen, Indian industry must move from the import and imitation approach to genuine innovation in both product development as well as delivery. This must be supported by permissive policies and enhanced funding by the Indian government and the private sector. Strict regulation of diagnostics, increased attention to quality assurance in laboratories, and greater engagement of the private health care providers are also needed to effectively deliver innovative products and approaches. PMID:22771602

  6. What Health Care Reform Means for Immigrants: Comparing the Affordable Care Act and Massachusetts Health Reforms.

    PubMed

    Joseph, Tiffany D

    2016-02-01

    The 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was passed to provide more affordable health coverage to Americans beginning in 2014. Modeled after the 2006 Massachusetts health care reform, the ACA includes an individual mandate, Medicaid expansion, and health exchanges through which middle-income individuals can purchase coverage from private insurance companies. However, while the ACA provisions exclude all undocumented and some documented immigrants, Massachusetts uses state and hospital funds to extend coverage to these groups. This article examines the ACA reform using the Massachusetts reform as a comparative case study to outline how citizenship status influences individuals' coverage options under both policies. The article then briefly discusses other states that provide coverage to ACA-ineligible immigrants and the implications of uneven ACA implementation for immigrants and citizens nationwide. PMID:26567382

  7. The Affordable Care Act and Implications for Health Care Services for American Indian and Alaska Native Individuals

    PubMed Central

    Ross, Raven E.; Garfield, Lauren D.; Brown, Derek S.; Raghavan, Ramesh

    2016-01-01

    American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) populations report poor physical and mental health outcomes while tribal health providers and the Indian Health Service (IHS) operate in a climate of significant under funding. Understanding how the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) affects Native American tribes and the IHS is critical to addressing the improvement of the overall access, quality, and cost of health care within AI/AN communities. This paper summarizes the ACA provisions that directly and/or indirectly affect the service delivery of health care provided by tribes and the IHS. PMID:26548665

  8. The Affordable Care Act and Implications for Health Care Services for American Indian and Alaska Native Individuals.

    PubMed

    Ross, Raven E; Garfield, Lauren D; Brown, Derek S; Raghavan, Ramesh

    2015-11-01

    American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) populations report poor physical and mental health outcomes while tribal health providers and the Indian Health Service (IHS) operate in a climate of significant under funding. Understanding how the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) affects Native American tribes and the IHS is critical to addressing the improvement of the overall access, quality, and cost of health care within AI/AN communities. This paper summarizes the ACA provisions that directly and/or indirectly affect the service delivery of health care provided by tribes and the IHS. PMID:26548665

  9. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 and Children and Youth With Special Health Care Needs

    PubMed Central

    Buysse, Christina A.; Hubner, Lauren M.; Huffman, Lynne C.; Loe, Irene M.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT: The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was designed to (1) decrease the number of uninsured Americans, (2) make health insurance and health care affordable, and (3) improve health outcomes and performance of the health care system. During the design of ACA, children in general and children and youth with special health care needs and disabilities (CYSHCN) were not a priority because before ACA, a higher proportion of children than adults had insurance coverage through private family plans, Medicaid, or the State Children's Health Insurance Programs (CHIP). ACA benefits CYSHCN through provisions designed to make health insurance coverage universal and continuous, affordable, and adequate. Among the limitations of ACA for CYSHCN are the exemption of plans that had been in existence before ACA, lack of national standards for insurance benefits, possible elimination or reductions in funding for CHIP, and limited experience with new delivery models for improving care while reducing costs. Advocacy efforts on behalf of CYSHCN must track implementation of ACA at the federal and the state levels. Systems and payment reforms must emphasize access and quality improvements for CYSHCN over cost savings. Developmental-behavioral pediatrics must be represented at the policy level and in the design of new delivery models to assure high quality and cost-effective care for CYSHCN. PMID:25793891

  10. 78 FR 13405 - Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Health Insurance Market Rules; Rate Review

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-02-27

    ... Care Act; Health Insurance Market Rules; Rate Review'' (77 FR 70584). These standards apply to health... Essential Health Benefits, Actuarial Value, and Accreditation'' (77 FR 70644), herein referred to as the EHB.... Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Health Insurance Market Rules; Rate Review; Final Rule...

  11. Nursing homes and the affordable care act: a cease fire in the ongoing struggle over quality reform.

    PubMed

    Hawes, Catherine; Moudouni, Darcy M; Edwards, Rachel B; Phillips, Charles D

    2012-01-01

    Most provisions in the Affordable Care Act that affect nursing homes originated in two earlier attempts at reform, both of which failed multiple times in prior Congressional sessions: the Elder Justice Act and the Nursing Home Transparency and Improvement Act. Both of these earlier efforts focused on improving quality and reducing elder abuse in nursing homes by strengthening oversight and enforcement penalties, expanding staff training, and increasing the information on nursing home quality available to consumers and regulators. Each bill addressed problems that were serious, widespread, and had persisted for years, but each failed to pass on its own. The Affordable Care Act, with its own momentum, became the vehicle for their passage. However, the reasons the bills failed in these earlier efforts suggest implementation challenges now that they have ridden into law on the coattails of the more general effort to reform the health care sector. PMID:22497359

  12. Policy Dilemmas in Latino Health Care and Implementation of the Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Ortega, Alexander N.; Rodriguez, Hector P.; Bustamante, Arturo Vargas

    2016-01-01

    The changing Latino demographic in the United States presents a number of challenges to health care policy makers, clinicians, organizations, and other stakeholders. Studies have demonstrated that Latinos tend to have worse patterns of access to, and utilization of, health care than other ethnic and racial groups. The implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010 may ameliorate some of these disparities. However, even with the ACA, it is expected that Latinos will continue to have problems accessing and using high-quality health care, especially in states that are not expanding Medicaid eligibility as provided by the ACA. We identify four current policy dilemmas relevant to Latinos’ health and ACA implementation: (a) the need to extend coverage to the undocumented; (b) the growth of Latino populations in states with limited insurance expansion; (c) demands on public and private systems of care; and (d) the need to increase the number of Latino physicians while increasing the direct patient-care responsibilities of nonphysician Latino health care workers. PMID:25581154

  13. Health Care Disparities in the Post–Affordable Care Act Era

    PubMed Central

    Preston, Michael A.; Gonzales, Gilbert

    2015-01-01

    Disparities in health care have been targeted for elimination by federal agencies and professional organizations, including the American Public Health Association. Although the Affordable Care Act (ACA) provides a valuable first step in reducing the disparities gap, progress is contingent upon whether opportunities in the ACA help or hinder populations at risk for impaired health and limited access to medical care. PMID:25879149

  14. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; establishment of exchanges and qualified health plans; Small Business Health Options Program. Final rule.

    PubMed

    2013-06-01

    This final rule implements provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (collectively referred to as the Affordable Care Act) related to the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP). Specifically, this final rule amends existing regulations regarding triggering events and special enrollment periods for qualified employees and their dependents and implements a transitional policy regarding employees' choice of qualified health plans (QHPs) in the SHOP. PMID:23734400

  15. The impact of the Affordable Care Act on health education: perceptions of leading health educators.

    PubMed

    Gastmyer, Christine L; Pruitt, B E Buzz

    2014-05-01

    The health care system in the United States is being overhauled by major legislation, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). This study's goal was to provide insight into the perceived impact and changes that could occur within the health education profession as a result of this health care reform legislation. Seven leaders of the health education profession participated in this qualitative research study. Six semistructured, exploratory interviews were conducted, and one participant provided written responses to the interview questions. A thematic analysis of the content of the interviews yielded five themes: (a) a fragmented sick-care system, (b) ACA becomes law: the participants' reactions, (c) ACA becomes law: the profession's reactions, (d) impact on the profession, and (e) health education in 2020. This article describes the fourth theme, the impact of the ACA on the health education profession. Leaders of the health education profession believed that the ACA creates a more favorable environment for health education practice. The positive elements of this legislation, however, will need to be protected, strengthened, and verified, through the work of health education professionals. As more mandates within the law are enacted over time, the impact on the profession, more than likely, will shift. PMID:24013465

  16. From Health as a Rational Choice to Health as an Affordable Choice

    PubMed Central

    Ward, Kenneth D.

    2009-01-01

    Sedentary, consumption-based lifestyles are placing entire populations at serious health risks; obesity is a prime example. The individual approach to obesity, which targets those at risk, has largely failed because it ignores wider influences on behavior. Although the population–ecological approach is gaining support, it cannot disentangle clear targets for policy change. Consequently, health promotion has been relegated to the mass marketing of healthy behaviors, which is based on a rational notion that informed people tend to behave in their best interest. Creating environments that support behavior change and providing individuals incentives can be more effective to reduce lifestyle-related risks. A paradigm shift from trying to sell health to the public to creating the conditions whereby healthy choices become accessible and affordable is required. PMID:19833991

  17. Affordable Health Benefits for Part-Time School Employees

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dickhart, Russ

    2005-01-01

    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, about 45 million Americans do not have health insurance. What's surprising is the majority of those individuals are actually employed. Part-time workers make up a full 15 percent of the uninsured population and school systems have a share of that group. Every day in the United States, approximately 10 percent…

  18. The Affordable Care Act, Accountable Care Organizations, and Mental Health Care for Older Adults: Implications and Opportunities

    PubMed Central

    Bartels, Stephen J.; Gill, Lydia; Naslund, John A.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) represents the most significant legislative change in the United States health care system in nearly half a century. Key elements of the ACA include reforms aimed at addressing high-cost, complex, vulnerable patient populations. Older adults with mental health disorders are a rapidly growing segment of the population and are among the most challenging subgroups within health care, and they account for a disproportionate amount of costs. What does the ACA mean for geriatric mental health? We address this question by highlighting opportunities for reaching older adults with mental health disorders by leveraging the diverse elements of the ACA. We describe nine relevant initiatives: (1) accountable care organizations, (2) patient-centered medical homes, (3) Medicaid-financed specialty health homes, (4) hospital readmission and health care transitions initiatives, (5) Medicare annual wellness visit, (6) quality standards and associated incentives, (7) support for health information technology and telehealth, (8) Independence at Home and 1915(i) State Plan Home and Community-Based Services program, and (9) Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, and the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute. We also consider potential challenges to full implementation of the ACA and discuss novel solutions for advancing geriatric mental health in the context of projected workforce shortages and the opportunities afforded by the ACA. PMID:25811340

  19. The Affordable Care Act, Accountable Care Organizations, and Mental Health Care for Older Adults: Implications and Opportunities.

    PubMed

    Bartels, Stephen J; Gill, Lydia; Naslund, John A

    2015-01-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) represents the most significant legislative change in the United States health care system in nearly half a century. Key elements of the ACA include reforms aimed at addressing high-cost, complex, vulnerable patient populations. Older adults with mental health disorders are a rapidly growing segment of the population and are among the most challenging subgroups within health care, and they account for a disproportionate amount of costs. What does the ACA mean for geriatric mental health? We address this question by highlighting opportunities for reaching older adults with mental health disorders by leveraging the diverse elements of the ACA. We describe nine relevant initiatives: (1) accountable care organizations, (2) patient-centered medical homes, (3) Medicaid-financed specialty health homes, (4) hospital readmission and health care transitions initiatives, (5) Medicare annual wellness visit, (6) quality standards and associated incentives, (7) support for health information technology and telehealth, (8) Independence at Home and 1915(i) State Plan Home and Community-Based Services program, and (9) Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, and the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute. We also consider potential challenges to full implementation of the ACA and discuss novel solutions for advancing geriatric mental health in the context of projected workforce shortages and the opportunities afforded by the ACA. PMID:25811340

  20. Are Americans finding affordable coverage in the health insurance marketplaces? Results from the Commonwealth Fund Affordable Care Act Tracking Survey.

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Petra W; Collins, Sara R; Doty, Michelle M; Beutel, Sophie

    2014-09-01

    By the end of the first open enrollment period for coverage offered through the Affordable Care Act's marketplaces, increasing numbers of people said they found it easy to find a plan they could afford, according to The Commonwealth Fund's Affordable Care Act Tracking Survey, April-June 2014. Adults with low or moderate incomes were more likely to say it was easy to find an affordable plan than were adults with higher incomes. Adults with low or moderate incomes who purchased a plan through the marketplaces this year have similar premium costs and deductibles as adults in the same income ranges with employer-provided coverage. A majority of adults with marketplace coverage gave high ratings to their insurance and were confident in their ability to afford the care they need when sick. PMID:25265646

  1. Affordability of out-of-pocket health care expenses among older Australians.

    PubMed

    Carpenter, Anthony; Islam, M Mofizul; Yen, Laurann; McRae, Ian

    2015-07-01

    Australia has universal health insurance, and provides price concessions on health care and prescription pharmaceuticals through government subsidies. However Australia ranks among the highest OECD nations for out-of-pocket health care spending. With high prevalence of multimorbidity (27% aged 65 and over have 2 or more long-term health conditions) older Australians may face a severe financial burden from out-of-pocket health expenses. We surveyed 4574 members of National Seniors Australia aged 50 years or more on their inability to pay out-of-pocket health-related expenses across categories of medical consultations and tests, medications, dental appointments, allied health appointments (e.g. physiotherapy, podiatry) and transport to medical appointments or tests. Almost 4% of those surveyed were unable to afford out-of-pocket costs in at least one category of health care expenses in the previous 3 months. The odds of being unable to afford out-of-pocket medical costs increased with the number of chronic medical conditions (3 conditions: OR 3.05, 95% CI 1.17-6.30; 4 or more conditions: OR 3.45, 95% CI 1.34-7.28, compared with no chronic medical conditions). Despite Australia's universal health insurance, and safety nets for medical and pharmaceutical contributions, older Australians with multiple chronic conditions are at risk of being unable to afford out-of-pocket health care expenses. PMID:25896218

  2. "White Box" Epidemiology and the Social Neuroscience of Health Behaviors: The Environmental Affordances Model.

    PubMed

    Mezuk, Briana; Abdou, Cleopatra M; Hudson, Darrell; Kershaw, Kiarri N; Rafferty, Jane A; Lee, Hedwig; Jackson, James S

    2013-07-01

    Crucial advances have been made in our knowledge of the social determinants of health and health behaviors. Existing research on health disparities, however, generally fails to address a known paradox in the literature: While blacks have higher risk of medical morbidity relative to non-Hispanic whites, blacks have lower rates of common stress-related forms of psychopathology such as major depression and anxiety disorders. In this article we propose a new theoretical approach, the Environmental Affordances Model, as an integrative framework for the origins of both physical and mental health disparities. We highlight early empirical support and a growing body of experimental animal and human research on self-regulatory health behaviors and stress coping that is consistent with the proposed framework. We conclude that transdisciplinary approaches, such as the Environmental Affordances Model, are needed to understand the origins of group-based disparities to implement effective solutions to racial and ethnic group inequalities in physical and mental health. PMID:24224131

  3. “White Box” Epidemiology and the Social Neuroscience of Health Behaviors: The Environmental Affordances Model

    PubMed Central

    Mezuk, Briana; Abdou, Cleopatra M.; Hudson, Darrell; Kershaw, Kiarri N.; Rafferty, Jane A.; Lee, Hedwig; Jackson, James S.

    2013-01-01

    Crucial advances have been made in our knowledge of the social determinants of health and health behaviors. Existing research on health disparities, however, generally fails to address a known paradox in the literature: While blacks have higher risk of medical morbidity relative to non-Hispanic whites, blacks have lower rates of common stress-related forms of psychopathology such as major depression and anxiety disorders. In this article we propose a new theoretical approach, the Environmental Affordances Model, as an integrative framework for the origins of both physical and mental health disparities. We highlight early empirical support and a growing body of experimental animal and human research on self-regulatory health behaviors and stress coping that is consistent with the proposed framework. We conclude that transdisciplinary approaches, such as the Environmental Affordances Model, are needed to understand the origins of group-based disparities to implement effective solutions to racial and ethnic group inequalities in physical and mental health. PMID:24224131

  4. Affordable Health Insurance for All Is Possible by Means of a Pragmatic Approach

    PubMed Central

    Tooker, John

    2003-01-01

    America can attain affordable health insurance coverage for all by using a pragmatic approach. Such an effort must accommodate the realities of the American health care system and resist the temptation to propose radical restructuring. The congressional strategy for universal health care described here was developed by the American College of Physicians–American Society of Internal Medicine. It builds on the strengths of the current pluralistic system by combining the benefits of public health plans such as Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program with a more competitive and affordable private insurance market. The health care system has reached a crisis point. Allowing the status quo to continue courts certain disaster. PMID:12511396

  5. Language Access and Health Equity: Changes under the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Applebaum, Bethany; Robbins, Sarah

    2016-01-01

    Health disparities between English-proficient and limited English-proficient (LEP) groups in the United States have been widely documented. Provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), including increased funding to community health centers and resources to help consumers who are purchasing Marketplace coverage afford new access to health care for speakers of languages other than English, which includes more than 60 million individuals, one-third of whom are LEP. This commentary discusses the legislative precedent for, successes of, and potential future directions for the implementation of the ACA as it relates to language access, health disparities, health equity, access to health care, and the linguistic needs of the LEP population in the United States. PMID:27180685

  6. Veterans Affairs Health System Enrollment and Health Care Utilization After the Affordable Care Act: Initial Insights.

    PubMed

    Silva, Abigail; Tarlov, Elizabeth; French, Dustin D; Huo, Zhiping; Martinez, Rachael N; Stroupe, Kevin T

    2016-05-01

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law in 2010 and its individual mandate and expanded health care coverage options were implemented in 2014. These provisions may affect Veterans Affairs (VA) enrollment and health care utilization. Using data from two VA regional networks, we examined recent patterns in the number of new VA enrollees and their primary care use. Trends were assessed by enrollment priority group (based on the veteran's severity of service-connected disabilities, exposures, and income level) and a state's Medicaid expansion status. Compared to the same time period in the previous year, the number of new enrollees from low-income priority groups was higher during the open enrollment period and the increase was sharper in Medicaid non-expansion states (25-42%) than in expansion states (20-32%). In addition, low-income patients with a copay requirement who enrolled in the VA during the ACA open enrollment had a lower average number of primary care visits than counterparts who had enrolled in prior time periods (1.73 versus 1.87, p < 0.0001). Although this study is an initial step, more research is required to better understand veterans' decision making and behavior in regard to health care coverage through the ACA and related impacts on VA and non-VA health care utilization and care coordination. PMID:27136655

  7. The U.S. health insurance marketplace: are premiums truly affordable?

    PubMed

    Graetz, Ilana; Kaplan, Cameron M; Kaplan, Erin K; Bailey, James E; Waters, Teresa M

    2014-10-21

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires that individuals have health insurance or pay a penalty. Individuals are exempt from paying this penalty if the after-subsidy cost of the least-expensive plan available to them is greater than 8% of their income. For this study, premium data for all health plans offered on the state and federal health insurance marketplaces were collected; the after-subsidy cost of premiums for the least-expensive bronze plan for every county in the United States was calculated; and variations in premium affordability by age, income, and geographic area were assessed. Results indicated that-although marketplace subsidies ensure affordable health insurance for most persons in the United States-many individuals with incomes just above the subsidy threshold will lack affordable coverage and will be exempt from the mandate. Furthermore, young individuals with low incomes often pay as much as or more than older individuals for bronze plans. If substantial numbers of younger, healthier adults choose to remain uninsured because of cost, health insurance premiums across all ages may increase over time. PMID:25199512

  8. [Quality of health care].

    PubMed

    Medina, J L; De Melo, P C

    2000-01-01

    Quality assurance is a relatively recent concern but already plays a major role in health care management and provision. Quality involves the definition of a comprehensive programme tailored by realistic and effective objectives and norms that include the structured review of procedures (namely clinical audits) and the use of up-to-date protocols. The involvement and motivation of health professionals, together with an adequate internal and external communication strategy, play a key role in the planning and application of these programmes. The use of programmed assessment, based on a solid knowledge of current practice, should have practical implications, optimising procedures in order to improve the quality of care. This commitment towards quality in health care should go far beyond governmental policy and should have clear support from health professionals. PMID:11234496

  9. Affordability as a discursive accomplishment in a changing National Health Service.

    PubMed

    Russell, Jill; Greenhalgh, Trisha

    2012-12-01

    Health systems worldwide face the challenges of rationing. The English National Health Service (NHS) was founded on three core principles: universality, comprehensiveness, and free at the point of delivery. Yet patients are increasingly hearing that some treatments are unaffordable on the NHS. We considered affordability as a social accomplishment and sought to explore how those charged with allocating NHS resources achieved this in practice. We undertook a linguistic ethnography to examine the work practices of resource allocation committees in three Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) in England between 2005 and 2012, specifically deliberations over 'individual funding requests' (IFRs)--requests by patients and their doctors for the PCT to support a treatment not routinely funded. We collected and analysed a diverse dataset comprising policy documents, legal judgements, audio recordings, ethnographic field notes and emails from PCT committee meetings, interviews and a focus group with committee members. We found that the fundamental values of universality and comprehensiveness strongly influenced the culture of these NHS organisations, and that in this context, accomplishing affordability was not easy. Four discursive practices served to confer legitimacy on affordability as a guiding value of NHS health care: (1) categorising certain treatments as only eligible for NHS funding if patients could prove 'exceptional' circumstances; (2) representing resource allocation decisions as being not (primarily) about money; (3) indexical labelling of affordability as an ethical principle, and (4) recontextualising legal judgements supporting refusal of NHS treatment on affordability grounds as 'rational'. The overall effect of these discursive practices was that denying treatment to patients became reasonable and rational for an organisation even while it continued to espouse traditional NHS values. We conclude that deliberations about the funding of treatments at the margins of NHS

  10. The Relevance of the Affordable Care Act for Improving Mental Health Care.

    PubMed

    Mechanic, David; Olfson, Mark

    2016-03-28

    Provisions of the Affordable Care Act provide unprecedented opportunities for expanded access to behavioral health care and for redesigning the provision of services. Key to these reforms is establishing mental and substance abuse care as essential coverage, extending Medicaid eligibility and insurance parity, and protecting insurance coverage for persons with preexisting conditions and disabilities. Many provisions, including Accountable Care Organizations, health homes, and other structures, provide incentives for integrating primary care and behavioral health services and coordinating the range of services often required by persons with severe and persistent mental health conditions. Careful research and experience are required to establish the services most appropriate for primary care and effective linkage to specialty mental health services. Research providing guidance on present evidence and uncertainties is reviewed. Success in redesign will follow progress building on collaborative care and other evidence-based practices, reshaping professional incentives and practices, and reinvigorating the behavioral health workforce. PMID:26666969

  11. Progress in increasing affordability of medicines for non-communicable diseases since the introduction of mandatory health insurance in the Republic of Moldova

    PubMed Central

    Ferrario, Alessandra; Chitan, Elena; Seicas, Rita; Sautenkova, Nina; Bezverhni, Zinaida; Kluge, Hans; Habicht, Jarno

    2016-01-01

    Background: To assess progress in improving affordability of medicines since the introduction of mandatory health insurance in the Republic of Moldova. Method: Using data from national health insurance, we estimate affordability of partially reimbursed medicines for the treatment of non-communicable diseases, and analyse which factors contributed to changes in affordability. Results: Affordability of subsidized medicines improved over time. In 2013, it took a median of 0.84 days of income for the lowest income quintile (ranging from 0 to 3.32 days) to purchase 1 month of treatment for cardiovascular conditions in comparison to 1.85 days in 2006. This improvement however was mainly driven by higher incomes rather than deeper coverage through the reimbursement list. Conclusion: If mandatory health insurance is to improve affordability of medicines for the Moldovan population, more funds need to be (re-)allocated to enable higher percentage coverage of essential medicines and efficiencies need to be generated within the health system. These should include a budget reallocation between secondary and primary care, strengthening primary care to manage chronic conditions and raise population awareness, implementation of evidence-based selection and quality use of medicines in both outpatient and inpatient settings, improving monitoring and regulation of prices and the supply chain; and alignment of national treatment guidelines and clinical practice with international best practices and evidence-based medicine. PMID:26830363

  12. Trends and affordability of cigarette prices: ample room for tax increases and related health gains

    PubMed Central

    Guindon, G; Tobin, S; Yach, D

    2002-01-01

    Objectives: To compare cigarette price data from more than 80 countries using varying methods, examine trends in prices and affordability during the 1990s, and explore various policy implications pertaining to tobacco prices. Design: March 2001 cigarette price data from the Economist Intelligence Unit are used to compare cigarette prices across countries. To facilitate comparison and to assess affordability, prices are presented in US dollars, purchasing power parity (PPP) units using the Big Mac index as an indicator of PPP and in terms of minutes of labour required to purchase a pack of cigarettes. Annual real percentage changes in cigarette prices between 1990 and 2000 and annual changes in the minutes of labour required to buy cigarettes between 1991 and 2000 are also calculated to examine trends. Results: Cigarette prices tend to be higher in wealthier countries and in countries that have strong tobacco control programmes. On the other hand, minutes of labour required to purchase cigarettes vary vastly between countries. Trends between 1990 and 2000 in real prices and minutes of labour indicate, with some exceptions, that cigarettes have become more expensive in most developed countries but more affordable in many developing countries. However, in the UK, despite recent increases in price, cigarettes are still more affordable than they were in the 1960s. Conclusions: The results suggest that there is ample room to increase tobacco prices through taxation. In too many countries, cigarette prices have failed to keep up with increases in the general price level of goods and services, rendering them more affordable in 2000 than they were at the beginning of the decade. Opportunities to increase government revenue and improve health through reduced consumption brought about by higher prices have been overlooked in many countries. PMID:11891366

  13. Affordable Care Act Impact on Community Health Center Staffing and Enrollment: A Cross-Sectional Study.

    PubMed

    Miller, Sophie C; Frogner, Bianca K; Saganic, Laura M; Cole, Allison M; Rosenblatt, Roger

    2016-01-01

    Over 500 000 Washingtonians gained health insurance under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). As more patients gain insurance, community health centers (CHCs) expect to see an increase in demand for their services. This article studies the CHCs in Washington State to examine how the increase in patients has been impacting their workload and staffing. We found a reported mean increase of 11.7% and 5.4% in new Medicaid and Exchange patients, respectively. Half of the CHCs experienced large or dramatic workload impact from the ACA. Our findings suggest that CHCs need further workforce support to meet the expanding patient demand. PMID:27576050

  14. Reframing the debate over health care reform: the role of system performance and affordability.

    PubMed

    Thorpe, Kenneth E

    2007-01-01

    The failure to pass comprehensive national health care reform requires a new approach for framing and structuring the debate. Since 85 percent of Americans have health insurance, framing the debate around the affordability of coverage is important. More important is understanding the factors responsible for driving growth in spending, and crafting effective interventions. Our work shows that much of the rise in spending is linked to the rise in the prevalence of treated disease--much of which is preventable. Reform strategies that address this issue are not inherently partisan and may prove to be a fruitful starting point for launching the debate. PMID:17978375

  15. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and Reproductive Health: Harnessing Data to Improve Care

    PubMed Central

    Stulberg, Debra

    2013-01-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) has great potential to improve reproductive health through several components: expanded coverage of people of reproductive age; required coverage of many reproductive health services; and insurance exchange structures that encourage individuals and states to hold plans and providers accountable. These components can work together to improve reproductive health. But in order for this to work, consumers and states need information with which to assess plans. This review article summarizes state contracting theory and argues that states should use this structure to require health plans to collect and report meaningful data that patients, providers, plans, payers, and third-party researchers can access. Now that the Supreme Court has upheld the PPACA and states must set up health insurance exchanges, populations can benefit from improved care and outcomes through data transparency. PMID:23262767

  16. Will employers drop health insurance coverage because of the Affordable Care Act?

    PubMed

    Buchmueller, Thomas; Carey, Colleen; Levy, Helen G

    2013-09-01

    Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, there has been much speculation about how many employers will stop offering health insurance once the act's major coverage provisions take effect. Some observers predict little aggregate effect, but others believe that 2014 will mark the beginning of the end for our current system of employer-sponsored insurance. We use theoretical and empirical evidence to address the question, "How will employers' offerings of health insurance change under health reform?" First, we describe the economic reasons why employers offer insurance. Second, we recap the relevant provisions of health reform and use our economic framework to consider how they may affect employers' offerings. Third, we review the various predictions that have been made about those offerings under health reform. Finally, we offer some observations on interpreting early data from 2014. PMID:24019355

  17. Modelling the affordability and distributional implications of future health care financing options in South Africa.

    PubMed

    McIntyre, Di; Ataguba, John E

    2012-03-01

    South Africa is considering introducing a universal health care system. A key concern for policy-makers and the general public is whether or not this reform is affordable. Modelling the resource and revenue generation requirements of alternative reform options is critical to inform decision-making. This paper considers three reform scenarios: universal coverage funded by increased allocations to health from general tax and additional dedicated taxes; an alternative reform option of extending private health insurance coverage to all formal sector workers and their dependents with the remainder using tax-funded services; and maintaining the status quo. Each scenario was modelled over a 15-year period using a spreadsheet model. Statistical analyses were also undertaken to evaluate the impact of options on the distribution of health care financing burden and benefits from using health services across socio-economic groups. Universal coverage would result in total health care spending levels equivalent to 8.6% of gross domestic product (GDP), which is comparable to current spending levels. It is lower than the status quo option (9.5% of GDP) and far lower than the option of expanding private insurance cover (over 13% of GDP). However, public funding of health services would have to increase substantially. Despite this, universal coverage would result in the most progressive financing system if the additional public funding requirements are generated through a surcharge on taxable income (but not if VAT is increased). The extended private insurance scheme option would be the least progressive and would impose a very high payment burden; total health care payments on average would be 10.7% of household consumption expenditure compared with the universal coverage (6.7%) and status quo (7.5%) options. The least pro-rich distribution of service benefits would be achieved under universal coverage. Universal coverage is affordable and would promote health system equity, but

  18. Implementing the Affordable Care Act: Revisiting the ACA's Essential Health Benefits Requirements.

    PubMed

    Giovannelli, Justin; Lucia, Kevin W; Corlette, Sabrina

    2014-10-01

    The Affordable Care Act broadens and strengthens the health insurance benefits available to consumers by requiring insurers to provide coverage of a minimum set of medical services known as "essential health benefits." Federal officials implemented this reform using transitional policies that left many important decisions to the states, while pledging to reassess that approach in time for the 2016 coverage year. This issue brief examines how states have exercised their options under the initial federal essential health benefits framework. We find significant variation in how states have developed their essential health benefits packages, including their approaches to benefit substitution and coverage of habilitative services. Federal regulators should use insurance company data describing enrollees' experiences with their coverage--information called for under the law's delayed transparency requirements--to determine whether states' differing strategies are producing the coverage improvements promised by reform. PMID:26259257

  19. Neurosurgery value and quality in the context of the Affordable Care Act: a policy perspective.

    PubMed

    Menger, Richard P; Guthikonda, Bharat; Storey, Christopher M; Nanda, Anil; McGirt, Matthew; Asher, Anthony

    2015-12-01

    Neurosurgeons provide direct individualized care to patients. However, the majority of regulations affecting the relative value of patient-related care are drafted by policy experts whose focus is typically system- and population-based. A central, prospectively gathered, national outcomes-related database serves as neurosurgery's best opportunity to bring patient-centered outcomes to the policy arena. In this study the authors analyze the impact of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on the determination of quality and value in neurosurgery care through the scope, language, and terminology of policy experts. The methods by which the ACA came into law and the subsequent quality implications this legislation has for neurosurgery will be discussed. The necessity of neurosurgical patient-oriented clinical registries will be discussed in the context of imminent and dramatic reforms related to medical cost containment. In the policy debate moving forward, the strength of neurosurgery's argument will rest on data, unity, and proactiveness. The National Neurosurgery Quality and Outcomes Database (N(2)QOD) allows neurosurgeons to generate objective data on specialty-specific value and quality determinations; it allows neurosurgeons to bring the patient-physician interaction to the policy debate. PMID:26621419

  20. A five-year assessment of the affordable care act: market forces still trump the common good in U.S. Health care.

    PubMed

    Geyman, John P

    2015-01-01

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was enacted in 2010 as the signature domestic achievement of the Obama presidency. It was intended to contain costs and achieve near-universal access to affordable health care of improved quality. Now, five years later, it is time to assess its track record. This article compares the goals and claims of the ACA with its actual experience in the areas of access, costs, affordability, and quality of care. Based on the evidence, one has to conclude that containment of health care costs is nowhere in sight, that more than 37 million Americans will still be uninsured when the ACA is fully implemented in 2019, that many more millions will be underinsured, and that profiteering will still dominate the culture of U.S. health care. More fundamental reform will be needed. The country still needs to confront the challenge that our for-profit health insurance industry, together with enormous bureaucratic waste and widespread investor ownership throughout our market-based system, are themselves barriers to health care reform. Here we consider the lessons we can take away from the ACA's first five years and lay out the economic, social/political, and moral arguments for replacing it with single-payer national health insurance. PMID:25674797

  1. How Has the Affordable Care Act Affected Health Insurers' Financial Performance?

    PubMed

    Hall, Mark A; McCue, Michael J

    2016-07-01

    Starting in 2014, the Affordable Care Act transformed the market for individual health insurance by changing how insurance is sold and by subsidizing coverage for millions of new purchasers. Insurers, who had no previous experience under these market conditions, competed actively but faced uncertainty in how to price their products. This issue brief uses newly available data to understand how health insurers fared financially during the ACA's first year of full reforms. Overall, health insurers' financial performance began to show some strain in 2014, but the ACA's reinsurance program substantially buffered the negative effects for most insurers. Although a quarter of insurers did substantially worse than others, experience under the new market rules could improve the accuracy of pricing decisions in subsequent years. PMID:27459740

  2. Landscape and Health: Connecting Psychology, Aesthetics, and Philosophy through the Concept of Affordance.

    PubMed

    Menatti, Laura; Casado da Rocha, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    In this paper we address a frontier topic in the humanities, namely how the cultural and natural construction that we call landscape affects well-being and health. Following an updated review of evidence-based literature in the fields of medicine, psychology, and architecture, we propose a new theoretical framework called "processual landscape," which is able to explain both the health-landscape and the medical agency-structure binomial pairs. We provide a twofold analysis of landscape, from both the cultural and naturalist points of view: in order to take into account its relationship with health, the definition of landscape as a cultural product needs to be broadened through naturalization, grounding it in the scientific domain. Landscape cannot be distinguished from the ecological environment. For this reason, we naturalize the idea of landscape through the notion of affordance and Gibson's ecological psychology. In doing so, we stress the role of agency in the theory of perception and the health-landscape relationship. Since it is the result of continuous and co-creational interaction between the cultural agent, the biological agent and the affordances offered to the landscape perceiver, the processual landscape is, in our opinion, the most comprehensive framework for explaining the health-landscape relationship. The consequences of our framework are not only theoretical, but ethical also: insofar as health is greatly affected by landscape, this construction represents something more than just part of our heritage or a place to be preserved for the aesthetic pleasure it provides. Rather, we can talk about the right to landscape as something intrinsically linked to the well-being of present and future generations. PMID:27199808

  3. Landscape and Health: Connecting Psychology, Aesthetics, and Philosophy through the Concept of Affordance

    PubMed Central

    Menatti, Laura; Casado da Rocha, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    In this paper we address a frontier topic in the humanities, namely how the cultural and natural construction that we call landscape affects well-being and health. Following an updated review of evidence-based literature in the fields of medicine, psychology, and architecture, we propose a new theoretical framework called “processual landscape,” which is able to explain both the health-landscape and the medical agency-structure binomial pairs. We provide a twofold analysis of landscape, from both the cultural and naturalist points of view: in order to take into account its relationship with health, the definition of landscape as a cultural product needs to be broadened through naturalization, grounding it in the scientific domain. Landscape cannot be distinguished from the ecological environment. For this reason, we naturalize the idea of landscape through the notion of affordance and Gibson’s ecological psychology. In doing so, we stress the role of agency in the theory of perception and the health-landscape relationship. Since it is the result of continuous and co-creational interaction between the cultural agent, the biological agent and the affordances offered to the landscape perceiver, the processual landscape is, in our opinion, the most comprehensive framework for explaining the health-landscape relationship. The consequences of our framework are not only theoretical, but ethical also: insofar as health is greatly affected by landscape, this construction represents something more than just part of our heritage or a place to be preserved for the aesthetic pleasure it provides. Rather, we can talk about the right to landscape as something intrinsically linked to the well-being of present and future generations. PMID:27199808

  4. Determinants of accessibility and affordability of health care in post-socialist Tajikistan: evidence and policy options.

    PubMed

    Fan, L; Habibov, N N

    2009-01-01

    There is increasing evidence of rising levels of inequality in health care utilisation in the post-socialist countries of Central Asia and the Caucasus. Against this backdrop, we investigate the determinants of accessibility and affordability of health care utilisation in Tajikistan. A modified version of the Andersen Behavioural Model is used to conceptualise the determinants of health care utilisation in Tajikistan. Poisson and Ordered Logit regression models are performed to estimate the determinants of health care utilisation. Empirical results demonstrate that poverty, chronic illness and disability are the most important determinants of health care utilisation and affordability in Tajikistan. Other significant determinants include gender, the level of education of the household head, and the availability of medical personnel at a given population point. These findings suggest an urgent need for health care reform in order to ensure equality in accessibility and affordability for the entire population. PMID:19326278

  5. Faith-based organizations and the Affordable Care Act: Reducing Latino mental health care disparities.

    PubMed

    Villatoro, Alice P; Dixon, Elizabeth; Mays, Vickie M

    2016-02-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA; 2010) is expected to increase access to mental health care through provisions aimed at increasing health coverage among the nation's uninsured, including 10.2 million eligible Latino adults. The ACA will increase health coverage by expanding Medicaid eligibility to individuals living below 138% of the federal poverty level, subsidizing the purchase of private insurance among individuals not eligible for Medicaid, and requiring employers with 50 or more employees to offer health insurance. An anticipated result of this landmark legislation is improvement in the screening, diagnosis, and treatment of mental disorders in racial/ethnic minorities, particularly for Latinos, who traditionally have had less access to these services. However, these efforts alone may not sufficiently ameliorate mental health care disparities for Latinos. Faith-based organizations (FBOs) could play an integral role in the mental health care of Latinos by increasing help seeking, providing religion-based mental health services, and delivering supportive services that address common access barriers among Latinos. Thus, in determining ways to eliminate Latino mental health care disparities under the ACA, examining pathways into care through the faith-based sector offers unique opportunities to address some of the cultural barriers confronted by this population. We examine how partnerships between FBOs and primary care patient-centered health homes may help reduce the gap of unmet mental health needs among Latinos in this era of health reform. We also describe the challenges FBOs and primary care providers need to overcome to be partners in integrated care efforts. PMID:26845492

  6. Defining quality in health care.

    PubMed

    Buck, A S

    1992-05-01

    The difficulty and importance of developing and implementing a definition of quality in health care is discussed. Some current definitions are considered, and a recommended definition of quality health care is presented. PMID:1630660

  7. Implementing the Affordable Care Act: The Promise and Limits of Health Care Reform.

    PubMed

    Oberlander, Jonathan

    2016-08-01

    The Obama administration has confronted a formidable array of obstacles in implementing the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA has overcome those obstacles to substantially expand access to health insurance, though significant problems with its approach have emerged. What does the ACA's performance to date tell us about the possibilities and limits of health care reform in the United States? I identify key challenges in ACA implementation-the inherently disruptive nature of reform, partisan polarization, the limits of "near universal" coverage, complexity, and divided public opinion-and analyze how these issues have shaped its evolution. The article concludes by exploring the political and policy challenges that lie ahead for the ACA. PMID:27127261

  8. Comparing Individual Health Coverage On and Off the Affordable Care Act's Insurance Exchanges.

    PubMed

    McCue, Michael J; Hall, Mark A

    2015-08-01

    The new health insurance exchanges are the core of the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) reforms, but how the law improves the nonsubsidized portion of the individual market is also important. This issue brief compares products sold on and off the exchanges to gain insight into how the ACA's market reforms are functioning. Initial concerns that insurers might seek to enroll lower-risk customers outside the exchanges have not been realized. Instead, more-generous benefit plans, which appeal to people with health problems, constitute a greater portion of plans sold off-exchange than those sold on-exchange. Although insur­ers that sell mostly on the exchanges incur an additional fee, they still devote a greater portion of their premium dollars to medical care. Their projected admin­istrative costs and profit margins are lower than are those of insurers selling only off the exchanges. PMID:26372970

  9. Not-for-profit hospitals and Affordable Care Act: Navigating the new health care landscape.

    PubMed

    Nakra, Prema; Nakra, Sushma

    2016-08-01

    On a sunny Thursday morning, June 25, 2015, President Obama strode into the Rose Garden and declared a victory for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) by stating that the act was working exactly the way it was supposed to work. He further reinforced that ACA has enabled young Americans up to the age of 26 to remain on their parents' health plans. It disallows the insurance companies from denying coverage based on preexisting conditions. Above all, an expansion of Medicaid has also brought an additional 16 million Americans under health coverage in a span of less than 2 years. The ACA went into full effect on January 1, 2014, ushering in health insurance reforms and new health coverage options across the country. As the states expand Medicaid and provide new coverage options through the federal health insurance marketplace, they are busy streamlining application and enrollment processes for coverage programs. This article highlights the positive impact of the ACA on uninsured and the challenges that not-for-profit and public hospitals are facing as they navigate the new health care landscape. PMID:27547877

  10. Food assistance programs for children afford mixed dietary quality based on HEI-2010.

    PubMed

    Byker, Carmen; Smith, Teresa

    2015-01-01

    Backpack programs across the United States distribute easy-to-prepare foods in a backpack to potentially food-insecure students on Fridays to help reduce weekend hunger. This study used Healthy Eating Index 2010 (HEI-2010) to assess foods provided in Montana backpack programs. Healthy Eating Index 2010 measures compliance with the 2010 Dietary Guidelines and is a tool to assess the diet quality of foods provided in supplemental food assistance programs. We hypothesized that HEI-2010 scores would be of average dietary quality. One randomly selected menu was collected from each Montana backpack program (n = 5) from the 2011-2012 academic year. Each food provided was analyzed for diet quality using HEI-2010 to obtain component and total scores. Descriptive statistics and t tests were calculated to assess whether mean HEI-2010 component scores and total scores differed significantly (P < .05) from the maximum scores. The mean total score for HEI-2010 was significantly lower than the maximum score of 100 (58.65; SD, 15.59; P = .004). Analysis resulted in significantly lower mean scores for total vegetables (2.26; SD, 1.37; P = .011), greens and beans (0; SD, 0; P < .001), fatty acids (0; SD, 0; P < .001), and sodium (3.90; SD, 2.52; P = .006). Dietary quality of backpack programs may further improve with information sharing between programs about the availability of specific food group items. To better suit children's nutritional needs and increase HEI-2010 scores, researchers, practitioners, and the food industry should identify food options for the backpack program that are easy to prepare, appealing, and affordable. PMID:25483753

  11. Integrating affordability, energy and environmental efficiency, air quality and disaster resistance into residential design and construction

    SciTech Connect

    Cook, G.D.

    1995-12-31

    Much has been researched and written about the individual qualities of good home design and construction in terms of: energy efficiency; affordability; indoor air quality; sustainability; and wind, fire, and flood resistance. The real challenge is to integrate all these characteristics into the ideal house. The purpose of this paper is to review the characteristics of each of the above features and explore the integration of them into the ideal residential structure. The house would take the shape of a compact two story structure. A geometrically compact structure uses less construction materials per floor area, presents less area for improved thermal efficiency, and less profile for wind and flood resistance. The first floor would be constructed using insulated strong high thermal mass masonry system resistant to flood, wind, fire, and termite damage. The second story would be constructed using a lighter reinforced wood frame system with between stud insulation coupled with exterior insulated sheathing to minimize thermal bridging across studs. Optimizing floor plan such as separating living and sleeping areas present opportunities for efficient split HVAC zoning, natural ventilation, and solar passive adaptation. The design would emphasize the 4, 8, and 12 foot dimensioning for waste reduction; selection of environmentally friendly building materials, such as cellulose insulation; and efficient lighting and appliances. Features providing improved indoor air quality such as prudent duct selection, design and location, use of radon barriers, omission of carpeting, and control of moisture would be addressed. The design philosophy, concepts and rationale for the integration of these and many other features of the ideal residence will be addressed and illustrated.

  12. The Affordable Care Act's new tools and resources to improve health and care for low-income families across the country.

    PubMed

    Schoen, Cathy; Hayes, Susan L; Riley, Pamela

    2013-10-01

    The Commonwealth Fund Scorecard on State Health System Performance for Low-Income Populations, 2013, finds wide gaps by income in access to care, quality of care received, and health outcomes in all states, and major differences between states in health system performance for people with below-average incomes. The Affordable Care Act provides state and local leaders with unprecedented opportunity along with new tools and resources to raise the standard for everyone and to begin to close the geographic and income divide. This issue brief reviews provisions of the law that have the potential to benefit low- and modest-income individuals, including those that expand health insurance coverage; strengthen primary care and improve care coordination; bolster the capacity of providers serving low-income communities; move toward greater accountability for the quality and cost of care; and invest in public health. It concludes by highlighting some of the challenges that lie ahead. PMID:24143851

  13. 77 FR 31513 - Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Establishment of Exchanges and Qualified Health Plans...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-05-29

    ... HUMAN SERVICES 45 CFR Parts 155, 156, and 157 RIN 0938-AQ67 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act... Federal Register on March 27, 2012, entitled ``Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Establishment... rule regarding the codification of section 1413(c) of the Affordable Care Act. To align the...

  14. Health Education Specialists' Knowledge, Attitudes, and Perceptions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Strong, Jessica; Hanson, Carl L; Magnusson, Brianna; Neiger, Brad

    2016-03-01

    The changing landscape of health care as a result of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) may provide new opportunities for health education specialists (HES). The purpose of this study was to survey HES in the United States on their knowledge and attitudes of the ACA and assess their perceptions of job growth under the law. A random sample of 220 (36% response rate) certified HES completed a 53-item cross sectional survey administered online through Qualtrics. Findings were compared to public opinion on health care reform. HES are highly favorable of the law (70%) compared to the general public (23%). A total of 85% of respondents were able to list a provision of the ACA, and most (81%) thought the ACA would be successful at increasing insured Americans. Over half (64.6%) believe job opportunities will increase. Those who viewed the law favorably were significantly more likely to score better on a knowledge scale related to the ACA. HES understand publicized provisions but are uncertain about common myths and specific provisions related to Title IV, "Prevention of Chronic Disease and Improving Public Health." Directed and continuing education to HES regarding the ACA is warranted. PMID:26272884

  15. Combined Regional Investments Could Substantially Enhance Health System Performance And Be Financially Affordable.

    PubMed

    Homer, Jack; Milstein, Bobby; Hirsch, Gary B; Fisher, Elliott S

    2016-08-01

    Leaders across the United States face a difficult challenge choosing among possible approaches to transform health system performance in their regions. The ReThink Health Dynamics Model simulates how alternative scenarios could unfold through 2040. This article compares the likely consequences if four interventions were enacted in layered combinations in a prototypical midsize US city. We estimated the effects of efforts to deliver higher-value care; reinvest savings and expand global payment; enable healthier behaviors; and expand socioeconomic opportunities. Results suggest that there may be an effective and affordable way to unlock much greater health and economic potential, ultimately reducing severe illness by 20 percent, lowering health care costs by 14 percent, and improving economic productivity by 9 percent. This would require combined investments in clinical and population-level initiatives, coupled with financial agreements that reduce incentives for costly care and reinvest a share of the savings to ensure adequate long-term financing. PMID:27503969

  16. eHealth and quality in health care: implementation time.

    PubMed

    Ossebaard, Hans C; Van Gemert-Pijnen, Lisette

    2016-06-01

    The use of information and communication technologies in health and health care could improve healthcare quality in many ways. Today's evidence base demonstrates the (cost-)effectiveness of online education, self-management support and tele-monitoring in several domains of health and care. While new results gradually provide more evidence for eHealth's impact on quality issues, now is the time to come to grips with implementation issues. Documented drawbacks such as low acceptance, low adoption or low adherence need our attention today to make the most of eHealth' potential. Improvement science is beginning to deliver the tools to address these persistent behavioural and cultural issues. The ceHRes Roadmap, for instance, is a plural and pragmatic approach that includes users' needs. It is now imperative to improve our implementation strategies in order to scale up eHealth technologies. This will accelerate the much needed transformation of our healthcare systems and sustain access, affordability and quality for all in the near future. PMID:27029590

  17. Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care Access and Utilization Under the Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Vargas-Bustamante, Arturo; Mortensen, Karoline; Ortega, Alexander N.

    2016-01-01

    Objective: To examine racial and ethnic disparities in health care access and utilization after the Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance mandate was fully implemented in 2014. Research Design: Using the 2011–2014 National Health Interview Survey, we examine changes in health care access and utilization for the nonelderly US adult population. Multivariate linear probability models are estimated to adjust for demographic and sociodemographic factors. Results: The implementation of the ACA (year indicator 2014) is associated with significant reductions in the probabilities of being uninsured (coef=−0.03, P<0.001), delaying any necessary care (coef=−0.03, P<0.001), forgoing any necessary care (coef=−0.02, P<0.001), and a significant increase in the probability of having any physician visits (coef=0.02, P<0.001), compared with the reference year 2011. Interaction terms between the 2014 year indicator and race/ethnicity demonstrate that uninsured rates decreased more substantially among non-Latino African Americans (African Americans) (coef=−0.04, P<0.001) and Latinos (coef=−0.03, P<0.001) compared with non-Latino whites (whites). Latinos were less likely than whites to delay (coef=−0.02, P<0.001) or forgo (coef=−0.02, P<0.001) any necessary care and were more likely to have physician visits (coef=0.03, P<0.005) in 2014. The association between year indicator of 2014 and the probability of having any emergency department visits is not significant. Conclusions: Health care access and insurance coverage are major factors that contributed to racial and ethnic disparities before the ACA implementation. Our results demonstrate that racial and ethnic disparities in access have been reduced significantly during the initial years of the ACA implementation that expanded access and mandated that individuals obtain health insurance. PMID:26595227

  18. Republican States Bolstered Their Health Insurance Rate Review Programs Using Incentives From the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Fulton, Brent D; Hollingshead, Ann; Karaca-Mandic, Pinar; Scheffler, Richard M

    2015-01-01

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) included financial and regulatory incentives and goals for states to bolster their health insurance rate review programs, increase their anticipated loss ratio requirements, expand Medicaid, and establish state-based exchanges. We grouped states by political party control and compared their reactions across these policy goals. To identify changes in states' rate review programs and anticipated loss ratio requirements in the individual and small group markets since the ACA's enactment, we conducted legal research and contacted each state's insurance regulator. We linked rate review program changes to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' (CMS) criteria for an effective rate review program. We found, of states that did not meet CMS's criteria when the ACA was enacted, most made changes to meet those criteria, including Republican-controlled states, which generally oppose the ACA. This finding is likely the result of the relatively low administrative burden associated with reviewing health insurance rates and the fact that doing so prevents federal intervention in rate review. However, Republican-controlled states were less likely than non-Republican-controlled states to increase their anticipated loss ratio requirements to align with the federal retrospective medical loss ratio requirement, expand Medicaid, and establish state-based exchanges, because of their general opposition to the ACA. We conclude that federal incentives for states to strengthen their health insurance rate review programs were more effective than the incentives for states to adopt other insurance-related policy goals of the ACA. PMID:26396089

  19. Which moral hazard? Health care reform under the Affordable Care Act of 2010.

    PubMed

    Mendoza, Roger Lee

    2016-06-20

    Purpose - Moral hazard is a concept that is central to risk and insurance management. It refers to change in economic behavior when individuals are protected or insured against certain risks and losses whose costs are borne by another party. It asserts that the presence of an insurance contract increases the probability of a claim and the size of a claim. Through the US Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010, this study seeks to examine the validity and relevance of moral hazard in health care reform and determine how welfare losses or inefficiencies could be mitigated. Design/methodology/approach - This study is divided into three sections. The first contrasts conventional moral hazard from an emerging or alternative theory. The second analyzes moral hazard in terms of the evolution, organization, management, and marketing of health insurance in the USA. The third explains why and how salient reform measures under the ACA might induce health care consumption and production in ways that could either promote or restrict personal health and safety as well as social welfare maximization. Findings - Insurance generally induces health care (over) consumption. However, not every additional consumption, with or without adverse selection, can be considered wasteful or risky, even if it might cost insurers more in the short run. Moral hazard can generate welfare and equity gains. These gains might vary depending on which ACA provisions, insured population, covered illnesses, treatments, and services, as well as health outcomes are taken into account, and because of the relative ambiguities surrounding definitions of "health." Actuarial risk models can nonetheless benefit from incorporating welfare and equity gains into their basic assumptions and estimations. Originality/value - This is the first study which examines the ACA in the context of the new or alternative theory of moral hazard. It suggests that containing inefficient moral hazard, and encouraging its desirable

  20. Public health service options for affordable and accessible noncommunicable disease and related chronic disease prevention and management

    PubMed Central

    Brownie, Sharon; Hills, Andrew P; Rossiter, Rachel

    2014-01-01

    Globally, nations are confronted with the challenge of providing affordable health services to populations with increasing levels of noncommunicable and chronic disease. Paradoxically, many nations can both celebrate increases in life expectancy and bemoan parallel increases in chronic disease prevalence. Simply put, despite living longer, not all of that time is spent in good health. Combined with factors such as rising levels of obesity and related noncommunicable disease, the demand for health services is requiring nations to consider new models of affordable health care. Given the level of disease burden, all staff, not just doctors, need to be part of the solution and encouraged to innovate and deliver better and more affordable health care, particularly preventative primary health care services. This paper draws attention to a range of exemplars to encourage and stimulate readers to think beyond traditional models of primary health service delivery. Examples include nurse-led, allied health-led, and student-led clinics; student-assisted services; and community empowerment models. These are reported for the interest of policy makers and health service managers involved in preventative and primary health service redesign initiatives. PMID:25473294

  1. Barriers to Health Insurance Pre- and Post-Affordable Care Act Implementation in Providence, RI.

    PubMed

    Pigoga, Jennifer; Kibria, Farzana; Pinilla, Mauricio; Bicki, Alexandra; Joseph, Valerie; De Groot, Anne S

    2015-12-01

    The impact of healthcare reform under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on individuals living in cities has not yet been quantified by local Departments of Health. This makes it difficult for safety net sources of healthcare, such as free clinics, to plan for the future. Therefore, members of Clinica Esperanza/Hope Clinic conducted a survey in predominantly Latino communities of South and West Providence, RI, using a convenience sample method (N = 206). Survey results were compared to a prior survey conducted in the same communities prior to ACA implementation. Despite gains due to Obamacare, a much higher level of uninsurance was reported in this survey than has been reported statewide. In 2014, as compared to 2010, 48% vs. 95% of respondents reported being uninsured, and more held private (20% vs. 5%) or government-subsidized health insurance (32% vs. 1%). Undocumented immigration status and cost were the two most commonly reported reasons for remaining uninsured under the ACA. First-generation immigrants living in urban centers are still reporting significantly higher rates of uninsurance (48%) than the general population in RI (7.4%). PMID:26623454

  2. Essential health benefits and the Affordable Care Act: law and process.

    PubMed

    Bagley, Nicholas; Levy, Helen

    2014-04-01

    Starting in 2014, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will require private insurance plans sold in the individual and small-group markets to cover a roster of "essential health benefits." Precisely which benefits should count as essential, however, was left to the discretion of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The matter was both important and controversial. Nonetheless, HHS announced its policy by posting on the Internet a thirteen-page bulletin stating that it would allow each state to define essential benefits for itself. On both substance and procedure, the move was surprising. The state-by-state approach departed from the uniform, federal standard that the ACA appears to anticipate and that informed observers expected HHS to adopt. And announcing the policy through an Internet bulletin appeared to allow HHS to sidestep traditional administrative procedures, including notice and comment, immediate review in the courts, and White House oversight. This article explores two questions. First, is the state-by-state approach a lawful exercise of HHS's authority? Second, did HHS in fact evade the procedural obligations that are meant to shape the exercise of its discretion? PMID:24305849

  3. The Affordable Care Act and integrated behavioral health programs in community health centers to promote utilization of mental health services among Asian Americans.

    PubMed

    Huang, Susan; Fong, Susana; Duong, Thomas; Quach, Thu

    2016-06-01

    The Affordable Care Act has greatly expanded health care coverage and recognizes mental health as a major priority. However, individuals suffering from mental health disorders still face layered barriers to receiving health care, especially Asian Americans. Integration of behavioral health services within primary care is a viable way of addressing underutilization of mental health services. This paper provides insight into a comprehensive care approach integrating behavioral health services into primary care to address underutilization of mental health services in the Asian American population. True integration of behavioral health services into primary care will require financial support and payment reform to address multi-disciplinary care needs and optimize care coordination, as well as training and workforce development early in medical and mental health training programs to develop the skills that aid prevention, early identification, and intervention. Funding research on evidence-based practice oriented to the Asian American population needs to continue. PMID:27188196

  4. Convergent innovation for sustainable economic growth and affordable universal health care: innovating the way we innovate.

    PubMed

    Dubé, Laurette; Jha, Srivardhini; Faber, Aida; Struben, Jeroen; London, Ted; Mohapatra, Archisman; Drager, Nick; Lannon, Chris; Joshi, P K; McDermott, John

    2014-12-01

    This paper introduces convergent innovation (CI) as a form of meta-innovation-an innovation in the way we innovate. CI integrates human and economic development outcomes, through behavioral and ecosystem transformation at scale, for sustainable prosperity and affordable universal health care within a whole-of-society paradigm. To this end, CI combines technological and social innovation (including organizational, social process, financial, and institutional), with a special focus on the most underserved populations. CI takes a modular approach that convenes around roadmaps for real world change-a portfolio of loosely coupled complementary partners from the business community, civil society, and the public sector. Roadmaps serve as collaborative platforms for focused, achievable, and time-bound projects to provide scalable, sustainable, and resilient solutions to complex challenges, with benefits both to participating partners and to society. In this paper, we first briefly review the literature on technological innovation that sets the foundations of CI and motivates its feasibility. We then describe CI, its building blocks, and enabling conditions for deployment and scaling up, illustrating its operational forms through examples of existing CI-sensitive innovation. PMID:25294668

  5. A Policy Analysis of Child Care Subsidies: Increasing Quality, Access, and Affordability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moodie-Dyer, Amber

    2011-01-01

    Changing family dynamics over the past four decades, including rises in the numbers of working mothers and single-parent families, have created an increased need for affordable child care. Government response to this need has involved a number of stop-and-start policy approaches, which have led to a fractured child care system that makes it…

  6. Investing in Quality, Affordable Education for All Americans: A New Look at Community Colleges.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Office of Vocational and Adult Education (ED), Washington, DC.

    Focusing on the role of community colleges in providing affordable access to postsecondary education, this two-part monograph reviews college services and federal aid programs for college students and provides projections of federal aid for 1998-99. The first part reviews the role of the colleges in the modern economy, highlighting such efforts as…

  7. The Affordable Care Act's implications for a public health workforce agenda: taxonomy, enumeration, and the Standard Occupational Classification system.

    PubMed

    Montes, J Henry; Webb, Susan C

    2015-01-01

    The Affordable Care Act brings a renewed emphasis on the importance of public health services and those whose occupations are defined by performing the essential public health functions. The Affordable Care Act Prevention and Public Health Fund is a signal to the field that its work is important and critical to the health of the nation. Recent reports by the Institute of Medicine describe the changing dimensions of public health work in primary care integration and the need for enhanced financing of public health as investment. Gaining knowledge about the public health workforce, that is, how many workers there are and what they are doing, is of growing interest and concern for the field. Although enumeration of the public health workforce has been attempted several times by the federal government beginning as early as 1982, it was not until the year 2000 that a major effort was undertaken to obtain more complete information. Limitations that hampered Enumeration 2000 have persisted however. With implementation of the Affordable Care Act and other new ventures, key federal agencies are developing strategies to pursue a systemic and systematic enumeration and consistent taxonomy process. Included in these efforts is use of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Standard Occupational Classification system. A clear and accurate understanding of the public health workforce and its characteristics is a major challenge. A well-constructed, systematic enumeration process can add to our understanding of the nature and functions of that workforce. In addition, discussion of enumeration must include the need for a consensus within the field that leads to a consistent taxonomy for the public health occupations. This article will provide a stage-setting brief of historical actions regarding enumeration, and it will examine selected enumeration activities taking place currently. It will discuss positive and negative implications facing public health and the potential for enhancing the

  8. Private sector participation in delivering tertiary health care: a dichotomy of access and affordability across two Indian states

    PubMed Central

    Katyal, Anuradha; Singh, Prabal Vikram; Bergkvist, Sofi; Samarth, Amit; Rao, Mala

    2015-01-01

    Poor quality care in public sector hospitals coupled with the costs of care in the private sector have trapped India's poor in a vicious cycle of poverty, ill health and debt for many decades. To address this, the governments of Andhra Pradesh (AP) and Maharashtra (MH), India, have attempted to improve people’s access to hospital care by partnering with the private sector. A number of government-sponsored schemes with differing specifications have been launched to facilitate this strategy. Aims This article aims to compare changes in access to, and affordability and efficiency of private and public hospital inpatient (IP) treatments between MH and AP from 2004 to 2012 and to assess whether the health financing innovations in one state resulted in larger or smaller benefits compared with the other. Methods We used data from household surveys conducted in 2004 and 2012 in the two states and undertook a difference-in-difference (DID) analysis. The results focus on hospitalization, out-of-pocket expenditure and length of stay. Results The average IP expenditure for private hospital care has increased in both states, but more so in MH. There was also an observable increase in both utilization of and expenditure on nephrology treatment in private hospitals in AP. The duration of stay recorded in days for private hospitals has increased slightly in MH and declined in AP with a significant DID. The utilization of public hospitals has reduced in AP and increased in MH. Conclusion The state of AP appears to have benefited more than MH in terms of improved access to care by involving the private sector. The Aarogyasri scheme is likely to have contributed to these impacts in AP at least in part. Our study needs to be followed up with repeated evaluations to ascertain the long-term impacts of involving the private sector in providing hospital care. PMID:25759452

  9. RECREATIONAL WATER QUALITY AND HEALTH

    EPA Science Inventory

    The overall objective of this pilot study was to develop and evaluate methods to determine the effect of quality of recreational waters on the health of persons bathing in those waters. There is little scientific evidence upon which to base water quality standards for the safety ...

  10. Achieving Quality in Occupational Health

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    O'Donnell, Michele (Editor); Hoffler, G. Wyckliffe (Editor)

    1997-01-01

    The conference convened approximately 100 registered participants of invited guest speakers, NASA presenters, and a broad spectrum of the Occupational Health disciplines representing NASA Headquarters and all NASA Field Centers. Centered on the theme, "Achieving Quality in Occupational Health," conferees heard presentations from award winning occupational health program professionals within the Agency and from private industry; updates on ISO 9000 status, quality assurance, and information technologies; workshops on ergonomics and respiratory protection; an overview from the newly commissioned NASA Occupational Health Assessment Team; and a keynote speech on improving women's health. In addition, NASA occupational health specialists presented 24 poster sessions and oral deliveries on various aspects of current practice at their field centers.

  11. Helping You Choose Quality Behavioral Health Care

    MedlinePlus

    Helping You Choose Quality Behavioral Health Care Selecting quality behavioral health care services for yourself, a relative or friend requires special thought and attention. The Joint Commission on ...

  12. Quality Assurance in School Health

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newell, Susan; Schoenike, Sumner L.; Lisko, Elaine A.

    2003-01-01

    School nurses need to become more influential administrators, managers, and entrepreneurs. They must learn to lead and collaborate effectively in designing, implementing, and evaluating coordinated school health programs. Quality assurance is an essential ingredient in this process that requires accurate, timely, and confidential incident…

  13. Students implement the Affordable Care Act: a model for undergraduate teaching and research in community health and sociology.

    PubMed

    Green, Brandn; Jones, Kristal; Boyd, Neil; Milofsky, Carl; Martin, Eric

    2015-06-01

    The implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) provides an opportunity for undergraduate students to observe and experience first-hand changing social policies and their impacts for individuals and communities. This article overviews an action research and teaching project developed at an undergraduate liberal arts university and focused on providing ACA enrollment assistance as a way to support student engagement with community health. The project was oriented around education, enrollment and evaluation activities in the community, and students and faculty together reflected on and analyzed the experiences that came from the research and outreach project. Student learning centered around applying concepts of diversity and political agency to health policy and community health systems. Students reported and faculty observed an unexpected empowerment for students who were able to use their university-learned critical thinking skills to explain complex systems to a wide range of audiences. In addition, because the project was centered at a university with no health professions programs, the project provided students interested in community and public health with the opportunity to reflect on how health and access to health care is conditioned by social context. The structure and pedagogical approaches and implications of the action research and teaching project is presented here as a case study for how to engage undergraduates in questions of community and public health through the lens of health policy and community engagement. PMID:25312869

  14. Why employers will continue to provide health insurance: the impact of the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Blumberg, Linda J; Buettgens, Matthew; Feder, Judith; Holahan, John

    2012-01-01

    The Congressional Budget Office, the Rand Corporation, and the Urban Institute have estimated that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) will leave employer-sponsored coverage largely intact; in contrast, some economists and benefit consultants argue that the ACA encourages employers to drop coverage, thereby making both their workers and their firms better off (a "win-win" situation). This analysis shows that no such "win-win" situation exists and that employer-sponsored insurance will remain the primary source of coverage for most workers. Analysis of three issues-the terms of the ACA, worker characteristics, and the fundamental economics of competitive markets-supports this conclusion. PMID:22931019

  15. Farmworker Housing Quality and Health.

    PubMed

    Arcury, Thomas A; Jacobs, Ilene J; Ruiz, Virginia

    2015-11-01

    On 11 November 2014, Farmworker Housing Quality and Health: A Transdisciplinary Conference was convened to draw together experts from the variety of disciplines who contribute to research and practice focused on farmworker housing and health in order to delineate current knowledge and propose next steps. The conference addressed three specific aims: (1) to consolidate current knowledge on characteristics and quality of housing provided for farmworkers; (2) to delineate pertinent directions and areas for farmworker housing health and safety research and policy; and (3) to facilitate the development of working groups to support the implementation of research, education, and engineering projects to improve farmworker housing. This article provides an overview of the conference. PMID:26378156

  16. Health insurance coverage among women of reproductive age before and after implementation of the affordable care act

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Rachel K.; Sonfield, Adam

    2016-01-01

    Objectives The Affordable Care Act's expansions to Medicaid and private coverage are of particular importance for women of childbearing age, who have numerous preventive care and reproductive health care needs. Study design We conducted two national surveys, one in 2012 and one in 2015, collecting information about health insurance coverage and access to care from 8000 women aged 18–39. We examine type of insurance and continuity of coverage between time periods, including poverty status and whether or not women live in a state that expanded Medicaid coverage. Results The proportion of women who were uninsured declined by almost 40% (from 19% to 12%), though several groups, including US-born and foreign-born Latinas, experienced no significant declines. Among low-income women in states that expanded Medicaid, the proportion uninsured declined from 38% to 15%, largely due to an increase in Medicaid coverage (from 40% to 62%). Declines in uninsurance in nonexpansion states were only marginally significant. Conclusions Despite substantial improvements in health insurance coverage, significant gaps remain, particularly in states that have not expanded Medicaid and for Latinas. Implications This analysis examines changes in insurance coverage that occurred after the Affordable Care Act was implemented. While coverage has improved for many populations, sizeable gaps in coverage remain for Latinas and women in states that did not expand Medicaid. PMID:26802569

  17. Access to health insurance and the use of inpatient medical care: evidence from the Affordable Care Act young adult mandate.

    PubMed

    Akosa Antwi, Yaa; Moriya, Asako S; Simon, Kosali I

    2015-01-01

    The Affordable Care Act of 2010 expanded coverage to young adults by allowing them to remain on their parent's private health insurance until they turn 26 years old. While there is evidence on insurance effects, we know very little about use of general or specific forms of medical care. We study the implications of the expansion on inpatient hospitalizations. Given the prevalence of mental health needs for young adults, we also specifically study mental health related inpatient care. We find evidence that compared to those aged 27-29 years, treated young adults aged 19-25 years increased their inpatient visits by 3.5 percent while mental illness visits increased 9.0 percent. The prevalence of uninsurance among hospitalized young adults decreased by 12.5 percent; however, it does not appear that the intensity of inpatient treatment changed despite the change in reimbursement composition of patients. PMID:25544401

  18. Parental Optimism and Progeny Choice: When is Screening for Offspring Quality Affordable.

    PubMed

    Forbes; Mock

    1998-05-01

    Three general classes of fitness incentives have been proposed for parental overproduction of offspring: (1) tracking environmental variation; (2) developmental facilitation; and (3) replacements for failed or defective members of the core brood. In one version of this last category, called the progeny choice hypothesis, parents are seen as creating an enlarged array of offspring from which a genetically superior subset is chosen for full investment. In the selection process, parents may eliminate the victims either through personal effort (filial infanticide) or by proxy (by allowing or even encouraging fatal sibling rivalry). Because the culling process is non-random, it can elevate average offspring quality. Progeny choice, however, is only cost-effective if the expenses of early overproduction (including elevated levels of sibling competition) do not outweigh the eventual upgrade in offspring quality. A fair competition within the offspring "arena" offers the greatest potential for discriminating on the basis of intrinsic quality, but may be overwhelmed by high costs of sibling rivalry. Conversely, while parentally managed competition (conferring handicaps to some and advantages to others) can discount those rivalry costs, it simultaneously diminishes the system's capacity for distinguishing good offspring from bad. Ceteris paribus, one would expect to find progeny choice mechanisms in species with cheap sibling rivalry, large cohorts of evenly matched offspring, and exaggerated variation in offspring genetic quality. Conversely, this class of incentives of parental overproduction seems least suited to taxa in which parents dole out marked advantages or handicaps to various concurrent offspring (e.g. asynchronously hatching birds).Copyright 1998 Academic Press Limited PMID:9628835

  19. 78 FR 33233 - Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Establishment of Exchanges and Qualified Health Plans...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-06-04

    ... Health Plans; Exchange Standards for Employers, 77 FR 18310 (March 27, 2012) (to be codified at 45 CFR... Payment Parameters for 2014, 78 FR 15410 (March 11, 2013) (to be codified at 45 CFR parts 153, 155, 156... Health Plans; Small Business Health Options Program, 77 FR 15553 (March 11, 2013) (to be codified at...

  20. Keeping up with the Cadillacs: What Health Insurance Disparities, Moral Hazard, and the Cadillac Tax Mean to The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Fletcher, Rebecca Adkins

    2016-03-01

    A major goal of The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is to broaden health care access through the extension of insurance coverage. However, little attention has been given to growing disparities in access to health care among the insured, as trends to reduce benefits and increase cost sharing (deductibles, co-pays) reduce affordability and access. Through a political economic perspective that critiques moral hazard, this article draws from ethnographic research with the United Steelworkers (USW) at a steel mill and the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU) at a food-processing plant in urban Central Appalachia. In so doing, this article describes difficulties of health care affordability on the eve of reform for differentially insured working families with employer-sponsored health insurance. Additionally, this article argues that the proposed Cadillac tax on high-cost health plans will increase problems with appropriate health care access and medical financial burden for many families. PMID:25132244

  1. Quality and quality improvement in occupational health nursing.

    PubMed

    Widtfeldt, A K

    1992-07-01

    Donabedian first defined quality as the result of assessing the structures, processes, and outcomes of health care. The emphasis on quality assurance is changing to quality improvement. The definition of quality in health care has expanded to include the expectations and opinion of patients, their representative, and society. As the cost of health care continues to rise at twice the rate of inflation, business wants to know how health care dollars are spent. Occupational health nurses, to add value to the businesses in which they work, must be a part of the trend in measuring the quality of the products and services of their health services. PMID:1616507

  2. Health care transition from pediatric care to adult care: opportunities and challenges under the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Webb, Lauren; Shah, Parag K; Harisiades, James P; Boudos, Rebecca; Agrawal, Rishi

    2015-01-01

    Enrollment of young adults is foundational to the success of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This article analyzes the implications for young adults transitioning from pediatric to adult care with the implementation of the ACA. We review the key characteristics of this population relevant to health care utilization and access as well as the impact of private insurance market reforms, health insurance marketplaces, Medicaid expansion, and workforce development provisions on this population. We then analyze how reform is impacting and will continue to impact specific populations of young adults, including individuals with disabilities, college students, immigrants, young adults who age out of the foster care system and individuals involved with the criminal justice system. Finally, we look at the socio-economic and political factors influencing outreach efforts, and make recommendations to maximize the benefits of the law for young adults to empower them to have access to care and financial security. PMID:25737348

  3. Affordability Calculations on a Health Education Campaign to Promote the Use of Aspirin in Wales

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morgan, Gareth

    2008-01-01

    Aspirin has far-reaching public health potential in reducing the risk of heart attacks, ischemic strokes and possibly cancer. Balanced against this potential are undesirable effects of the drug. It seems reasonable to allow every individual over the age of 50 years to make an informed choice about whether or not to take aspirin. A health education…

  4. 77 FR 70583 - Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Health Insurance Market Rules; Rate Review

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-11-26

    ... final rule with comment period (76 FR 29964), to implement the annual review ] of unreasonable increases... group health plans that are non-federal governmental plans. This proposed rule would also amend the... allow some form of gender rating in practice. In the small group market, 38 states allow health...

  5. Indoor air quality and health

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, A. P.

    During the last two decades there has been increasing concern within the scientific community over the effects of indoor air quality on health. Changes in building design devised to improve energy efficiency have meant that modern homes and offices are frequently more airtight than older structures. Furthermore, advances in construction technology have caused a much greater use of synthetic building materials. Whilst these improvements have led to more comfortable buildings with lower running costs, they also provide indoor environments in which contaminants are readily produced and may build up to much higher concentrations than are found outside. This article reviews our current understanding of the relationship between indoor air pollution and health. Indoor pollutants can emanate from a range of sources. The health impacts from indoor exposure to combustion products from heating, cooking, and the smoking of tobacco are examined. Also discussed are the symptoms associated with pollutants emitted from building materials. Of particular importance might be substances known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which arise from sources including paints, varnishes, solvents, and preservatives. Furthermore, if the structure of a building begins to deteriorate, exposure to asbestos may be an important risk factor for the chronic respiratory disease mesothelioma. The health effects of inhaled biological particles can be significant, as a large variety of biological materials are present in indoor environments. Their role in inducing illness through immune mechanisms, infectious processes, and direct toxicity is considered. Outdoor sources can be the main contributors to indoor concentrations of some contaminants. Of particular significance is Radon, the radioactive gas that arises from outside, yet only presents a serious health risk when found inside buildings. Radon and its decay products are now recognised as important indoor pollutants, and their effects are

  6. Ninety-day waiting period limitation and technical amendments to certain health coverage requirements under the Affordable Care Act. Final rule.

    PubMed

    2014-02-24

    These final regulations implement the 90-day waiting period limitation under section 2708 of the Public Health Service Act, as added by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Affordable Care Act), as amended, and incorporated into the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 and the Internal Revenue Code. These regulations also finalize amendments to existing regulations to conform to Affordable Care Act provisions. Specifically, these rules amend regulations implementing existing provisions such as some of the portability provisions added by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) because those provisions of the HIPAA regulations have become superseded or require amendment as a result of the market reform protections added by the Affordable Care Act. PMID:24611209

  7. Propulsion Health Management System Development for Affordable and Reliable Operation of Space Exploration Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Melcher, Kevin J.; Maul, William A.; Garg, Sanjay

    2007-01-01

    The constraints of future Exploration Missions will require unique integrated system health management capabilities throughout the mission. An ambitious launch schedule, human-rating requirements, long quiescent periods, limited human access for repair or replacement, and long communication delays, all require an integrated approach to health management that can span distinct, yet interdependent vehicle subsystems, anticipate failure states, provide autonomous remediation and support the Exploration Mission from beginning to end. Propulsion is a critical part of any space exploration mission, and monitoring the health of the propulsion system is an integral part of assuring mission safety and success. Health management is a somewhat ubiquitous technology that encompasses a large spectrum of physical components and logical processes. For this reason, it is essential to develop a systematic plan for propulsion health management system development. This paper provides a high-level perspective of propulsion health management systems, and describes a logical approach for the future planning and early development that are crucial to planned space exploration programs. It also presents an overall approach, or roadmap, for propulsion health management system development and a discussion of the associated roadblocks and challenges.

  8. Quality of care in reproductive health programmes: education for quality improvement.

    PubMed

    Kwast, B E

    1998-09-01

    The provision of high quality maternity care will make the difference between life and death or lifelong maiming for millions of pregnant women. Barriers preventing access to affordable, appropriate, acceptable and effective services, and lack of facilities providing high quality obstetric care result in about 1600 maternal deaths every day. Education in its broadest sense is required at all levels and sectors of society to enhance policy formulation that will strengthen programme commitment, improve services with a culturally sensitive approach and ensure appropriate delegation of responsibility to health staff at peripheral levels. This paper is the second in series of three which addresses quality of care. The first (Kwast 1998) contains an overview of concepts, assessments, barriers and improvements of quality of care. The third article will describe selected aspects of monitoring and evaluation of quality of care. PMID:9856019

  9. Implementing the Affordable Care Act: state approaches to premium rate reforms in the individual health insurance market.

    PubMed

    Giovannelli, Justin; Lucia, Kevin W; Corlette, Sabrina

    2014-12-01

    The Affordable Care Act protects people from being charged more for insurance based on factors like medical history or gender and establishes new limits on how insurers can adjust premiums for age, tobacco use, and geography. This brief examines how states have implemented these federal reforms in their individual health insurance markets. We identify state rating standards for the first year of full implementation of reform and explore critical considerations weighed by policymakers as they determined how to adopt the law's requirements. Most states took the opportunity to customize at least some aspect of their rating standards. Interviews with state regulators reveal that many states pursued implementation strategies intended primarily to minimize market disruption and premium shock and therefore established standards as consistent as possible with existing rules or market practice. Meanwhile, some states used the transition period to strengthen consumer protections, particularly with respect to tobacco rating. PMID:25588235

  10. Job mobility among parents of children with chronic health conditions: Early effects of the 2010 Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Chatterji, Pinka; Brandon, Peter; Markowitz, Sara

    2016-07-01

    We examine the effects of the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act's (ACA) prohibition of preexisting conditions exclusions for children on job mobility among parents. We use a difference-in-difference approach, comparing pre-post policy changes in job mobility among privately-insured parents of children with chronic health conditions vs. privately-insured parents of healthy children. Data come from the 2004 and 2008 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP). Among married fathers, the policy change is associated with about a 0.7 percentage point, or 35 percent increase, in the likelihood of leaving an employer voluntarily. We find no evidence that the policy change affected job mobility among married and unmarried mothers. PMID:27060524

  11. Defining quality improvement in public health.

    PubMed

    Riley, William J; Moran, John W; Corso, Liza C; Beitsch, Leslie M; Bialek, Ronald; Cofsky, Abbey

    2010-01-01

    Many industries commonly use quality improvement (QI) techniques to improve service delivery and process performance. Yet, there has been scarce application of these proven methods to public health settings and the public health field has not developed a set of shared principles or a common definition for quality improvement. This article discusses a definition of quality improvement in public health and describes a continuum of quality improvement applications for public health departments. Quality improvement is a distinct management process and set of tools and techniques that are coordinated to ensure that departments consistently meet the health needs of their communities. PMID:20009636

  12. Achieving Public Health Goals Through Medicaid Expansion: Opportunities in Criminal Justice, Homelessness, and Behavioral Health With the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Klingenmaier, Lisa

    2013-01-01

    States are currently discussing how (or whether) to implement the Medicaid expansion to nondisabled adults earning less than 133% of the federal poverty level, a key aspect of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Those experiencing homelessness and those involved with the criminal justice system—particularly when they struggle with behavioral health diagnoses—are subpopulations that are currently uninsured at high rates and have significant health care needs but will become Medicaid eligible starting in 2014. We outline the connection between these groups, assert outcomes possible from greater collaboration between multiple systems, provide a summary of Medicaid eligibility and its ramifications for individuals in the criminal justice system, and explore opportunities to improve overall public health through Medicaid outreach, enrollment, and engagement in needed health care. PMID:24148039

  13. Commentary: Personalized health planning and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: an opportunity for academic medicine to lead health care reform.

    PubMed

    Dinan, Michaela A; Simmons, Leigh Ann; Snyderman, Ralph

    2010-11-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA) mandates the exploration of new approaches to coordinated health care delivery--such as patient-centered medical homes, accountable care organizations, and disease management programs--in which reimbursement is aligned with desired outcomes. PPACA does not, however, delineate a standardized approach to improve the delivery process or a specific means to quantify performance for value-based reimbursement; these details are left to administrative agencies to develop and implement. The authors propose that coordinated care can be implemented more effectively and performance quantified more accurately by using personalized health planning, which employs individualized strategic health planning and care relevant to the patient's specific needs. Personalized health plans, developed by providers in collaboration with their patients, quantify patients' health and health risks over time, identify strategies to mitigate risks and/or treat disease, deliver personalized care, engage patients in their care, and measure outcomes. Personalized health planning is a core clinical process that can standardize coordinated care approaches while providing the data needed for performance-based reimbursement. The authors argue that academic health centers have a significant opportunity to lead true health care reform by adopting personalized health planning to coordinate care delivery while conducting the research and education necessary to enable its broad clinical application. PMID:20844424

  14. Community Health Center Utilization Following the 2008 Medicaid Expansion in Oregon: Implications for the Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Hatch, Brigit; Bailey, Steffani R.; Cowburn, Stuart; Marino, Miguel; Angier, Heather; DeVoe, Jennifer E.

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To assess longitudinal patterns of community health center (CHC) utilization and the effect of insurance discontinuity after Oregon’s 2008 Medicaid expansion (the Oregon Experiment). Methods We conducted a retrospective cohort study with electronic health records and Medicaid data. We divided individuals who gained Medicaid in the Oregon Experiment into those who maintained (n = 788) or lost (n = 944) insurance coverage. We compared these groups with continuously insured (n = 921) and continuously uninsured (n = 5416) reference groups for community health center utilization rates over a 36-month period. Results Both newly insured groups increased utilization in the first 6 months. After 6 months, use among those who maintained coverage stabilized at a level consistent with the continuously insured, whereas it returned to baseline for those who lost coverage. Conclusions Individuals who maintained coverage through Oregon’s Medicaid expansion increased long-term utilization of CHCs, whereas those with unstable coverage did not. Policy implications This study predicts long-term increase in CHC utilization following Affordable Care Act Medicaid expansion and emphasizes the need for policies that support insurance retention. PMID:26890164

  15. Availability, prices and affordability of the World Health Organization’s essential medicines for children in Guatemala

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Several World Health Organization (WHO) initiatives aim to improve the accessibility of safe and effective medicines for children. A first step in achieving this goal is to obtain a baseline measure of access to essential medicines. The objective of this project was to measure the availability, prices, and affordability of children’s medicines in Guatemala. Methods An adaption of the standardized methodology developed by the World Health Organization and Health Action International (HAI) was used to conduct a cross sectional survey to collect data on availability and final patient prices of medicines in public and private sector medicine outlets during April and May of 2010. Results A subset of the public sector, Programa de Accesibilidad a los Medicamentos (PROAM), had the lowest average availability (25%) compared to the private sector (35%). In the private sector, highest and lowest priced medicines were 22.7 and 10.7 times more expensive than their international reference price comparison. Treatments were generally unaffordable, costing as much as 15 days wages for a course of ceftriaxone. Conclusions Analysis of the procurement, supply and distribution of specific medicines is needed to determine reasons for lack of availability. Improvements to accessibility could be made by developing an essential medicines list for children and including these medicines in national purchasing lists. PMID:22747646

  16. The U.S. Health Care Crisis Five Years After Passage of the Affordable Care Act: A Data Snapshot.

    PubMed

    Hellander, Ida

    2015-01-01

    Despite passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, the U.S. health care crisis continues. While coverage has been expanded, the reform will leave 27 million people uninsured in 2024, according to the Congressional Budget Office. Much of the new coverage is of low actuarial value with high cost-sharing requirements, creating barriers to access. Choice of physician is restricted to narrow networks of providers. Recent measures of uninsurance, underinsurance, access to care, and health care costs are given. Changes in Medicare, particularly privatization and the rise of specialty drug tiers that limit access to medically necessary medications, are reviewed. Data on a new wave of consolidation among hospitals, medical groups, insurers, and drug companies are presented. The rise of ultra-high-price drugs, such as Solvadi, is raising pharmaceutical costs, particularly in Medicaid, the program for low-income Americans. International health comparisons continue to show the United States performing poorly in relation to other countries. Recent polling data are presented, showing support for more fundamental reform. PMID:26251349

  17. Strategic service quality management for health care.

    PubMed

    Anderson, E A; Zwelling, L A

    1996-01-01

    Quality management has become one of the most important and most debated topics within the service sector. This is especially true for health care, as the controversy rages on how the existing American system should be restructured. Health care reform aimed at reducing costs and ensuring access to all Americans cannot be allowed to jeopardize the quality of care. As such, total quality management (TQM) has become a vital ingredient to strategic planning within the health care domain. At the heart of any such quality improvement effort is the issue of measurement. TQM cannot be effectively utilized as a competitive weapon unless quality can be accurately defined, measured, evaluated, and monitored over time. Through such analysis a hospital can elect how to expend its limited resources toward those quality improvement projects which will impact customer perceptions of service quality the most. Thus, the purpose of this report is to establish a framework by which to approach the issue of quality measurement, delineate the various components of quality that exist in health care, and explore how these elements affect one another. We propose that the issue of quality measurement in health care be approached as an integration of service quality attributes common to other service organizations and technical quality attributes unique to health care. We hope that this research will serve as a first step toward the synthesis of the various quality attributes inherent in the health care domain and encourage other researchers to address the interactions of the various quality attributes. PMID:8763215

  18. Health Professions Education: A Bridge to Quality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greiner, Ann C., Ed.; Knebel, Elisa, Ed.

    2003-01-01

    The Institute of Medicine study Crossing the Quality Chasm (2001) recommended that an interdisciplinary summit be held to further reform of health professions education in order to enhance quality and patient safety. Health Professions Education: A Bridge to Quality is the follow up to that summit, held in June 2002, where 150 participants across…

  19. Initial Health Assessments and HIV Screening under the Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Leibowitz, Arleen A.

    2015-01-01

    Background The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 156,300 (95% CI 144,100–165,900) Americans living with HIV in 2012 were unaware of their infection. To increase knowledge of HIV status, CDC guidelines seek to make HIV screening a routine part of medical care. This paper examines how routinely California primary care providers test for HIV and how providers’ knowledge of California’s streamlined testing requirements, use of sexual histories, and having an electronic medical record prompt for HIV testing, relate to test offers. Methods We surveyed all ten California health plans offered under health reform’s Insurance Exchange (response rate = 50%) and 322 primary care providers to those plans (response rate = 19%) to assess use of HIV screening and risk assessments. Results Only 31.7% of 60 responding providers reported offering HIV tests to all or most new enrollees and only 8.8% offered an HIV test of blood samples all or most of the time despite the California law requiring that providers offer HIV testing of blood samples in primary care settings. Twenty-eight of the 60 providers (46.6%) were unaware that California had reduced barriers to HIV screening by eliminating the requirement for written informed consent and pre-test counseling. HIV screening of new enrollees all or most of the time was reported by 53.1% of the well-informed providers, but only 7.1% of the less informed providers, a difference of 46 percentage points (95% CI: 21.0%—66.5%). Providers who routinely obtained sexual histories were 29 percentage points (95% CI: 0.2%—54.9%) more likely to screen for HIV all or most of the time than those who did not ask sexual histories. Conclusion Changing HIV screening requirements is important, but not sufficient to make HIV testing a routine part of medical care. Provider education to increase knowledge about the changed HIV testing requirements could positively impact testing rates. PMID:26418260

  20. Cardiovascular health outcomes of Latinos in the Affordable Housing as an Obesity Mediating Environment (AHOME) study: a study of rental assistance use.

    PubMed

    Chambers, Earle C; Rosenbaum, Emily

    2014-06-01

    Studies have shown that households subsidized with vouchers live in higher quality units and exhibit fewer physical, mental, and social problems than do their peers living in public housing. However, none of these studies have included cardiovascular outcomes. The objective of this study was to assess if use/type of rental assistance is independently associated with poor cardiovascular health among Latino adults (ages ≥ 18) who are eligible for federal low-income rental assistance and living in the Bronx, NY. Data from the cross-sectional, Affordable Housing as an Obesity Mediating Environment study, collected over 18 months (January 2011 to August 2012) were used. The prevalence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) outcomes was determined by measured high blood pressure and self-reported heart attack and/or stroke. Type of housing status was defined as: public housing units, units subsidized by section 8 vouchers, and units unassisted by either federal program. Statistical techniques used were analysis of variance and multivariate logistic regression. The prevalence of CVD was significantly higher among public housing residents than unassisted participants even in the presence of all individual level covariates. Public housing residents also have higher levels of CVD than do section 8 participants. The prevalence of CVD was similar for unassisted and section 8 participants. These findings point to the potential for health benefits arising from housing voucher use even within a fairly delimited geographic area. PMID:24190105

  1. How Does Religious Affiliation Affect Women’s Attitudes Toward Reproductive Health Policy? Implications for the Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Patton, Elizabeth W.; Hall, Kelli Stidham; Dalton, Vanessa K.

    2015-01-01

    Structured Abstract Background Supreme Court cases challenging the Affordable Care Act (ACA) mandate for employer-provided reproductive health care have focused on religiously based opposition to coverage. Little is known about women’s perspectives on such reproductive health policies. Study Design Data were drawn from the Women’s Health Care Experiences and Preferences survey, a randomly selected, nationally representative sample of 1078 US women age 18–55. We examined associations between religious affiliation and attitudes toward employer-provided insurance coverage of contraception and abortion services, and the exclusion of religious institutions from this coverage. We used chi-square and multivariable logistic regression for analysis. Results Respondents self-identified as Baptist (18%), Protestant (Other Mainline, 17%), Catholic (17%), Other Christian (20%), Religious, Non-Christian (7%) or no affiliation (21%). Religious affiliation was associated with proportions of agreement for contraception (p = 0.03), abortion (p <0.01), and religious exclusion (p <0.01) policies. In multivariable models, differences in the odds of agreement varied across religious affiliations and frequency of service attendance. For example, compared to non-affiliated women, Baptists and Other Nondenominational Christians (but not Catholics) had lower odds of agreement with employer coverage of contraception (OR 0.63, 95% CI 0.4-0.1 and OR 0.57, CI 0.4–0.9, respectively); women who attended services weekly or more than weekly had lower odds of agreement (OR 0.53, 95% CI 0.3–0.8 and OR 0.33, CI 0.2–0.6, respectively), compared to less frequent attenders. Conclusions Recent religiously motivated legal challenges to employer-provided reproductive health care coverage may not represent the attitudes of many religious women. PMID:25727764

  2. Measuring the quality of care: reforming the health care system.

    PubMed

    Longo, D R; Daugird, A J

    1994-01-01

    Elements of meaningful health care reform must include the ability of patients, providers, and payers to select services offering quality care at an affordable price. To achieve this goal, an appropriate definition of quality needs to be articulated and adopted; data capturing the definition needs to be collected; and appropriate measures need to be selected to analyze that data. Results need to be publically available to assist in making informed choices. The health professions need to fulfill their social contract. And, government needs to ensure that public safety and accountability are maintained and preserved. While the goals and strategies of the different players in the health care arena may be different, there is one thing in common--the needs of citizens must be met through the provision of available, accessible, quality, equitable, and cost-effective health care. These values need to be incorporated into a reform plan. Currently, our ability to comprehensively, consistently, and uniformly perform these tasks is severely limited. While many diverse factors, such as the limitation of financial support and the lack of uniform information systems, contribute to this situation, we believe it is possible through the implementation of a series of recommendations to achieve these goals. This paper outlines the current situation, reviews insights derived from the literature and past and current experiences. Recommendations are made that apply equally to health reform efforts at the state and/or federal levels. PMID:7950482

  3. Quality and Electronic Health Records in Community Health Centers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lesh, Kathryn A.

    2014-01-01

    Adoption and use of health information technology, the electronic health record (EHR) in particular, has the potential to help improve the quality of care, increase patient safety, and reduce health care costs. Unfortunately, adoption and use of health information technology has been slow, especially when compared to the adoption and use of…

  4. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010: reforming the health care reform for the new decade.

    PubMed

    Manchikanti, Laxmaiah; Caraway, David L; Parr, Allan T; Fellows, Bert; Hirsch, Joshua A

    2011-01-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (the ACA, for short) became law with President Obama's signature on March 23, 2010. It represents the most significant transformation of the American health care system since Medicare and Medicaid. It is argued that it will fundamentally change nearly every aspect of health care, from insurance to the final delivery of care. The length and complexity of the legislation and divisive and heated debates have led to massive confusion about the impact of ACA. It also became one of the centerpieces of 2010 congressional campaigns. Essentials of ACA include: 1) a mandate for individuals and businesses requiring as a matter of law that nearly every American have an approved level of health insurance or pay a penalty; 2) a system of federal subsidies to completely or partially pay for the now required health insurance for about 34 million Americans who are currently uninsured - subsidized through Medicaid and exchanges; 3) extensive new requirements on the health insurance industry; and 4) numerous regulations on the practice of medicine. The act is divided into 10 titles. It contains provisions that went into effect starting on June 21, 2010, with the majority of provisions going into effect in 2014 and later. The perceived major impact on practicing physicians in the ACA is related to growing regulatory authority with the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) and the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). In addition to these specifics is a growth of the regulatory regime in association with further discounts in physician reimbursement. With regards to cost controls and projections, many believe that the ACA does not fix the finances of our health care system - neither public nor private. It has been suggested that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the administration have used creative accounting to arrive at an alleged deficit reduction; however, if everything is included appropriately and

  5. Quality improvement in population health systems.

    PubMed

    Inkelas, Moira; McPherson, Marianne E

    2015-12-01

    Quality improvement methods have achieved large sustainable changes in health care quality and health outcomes. Transforming health care into a population health system requires methods for innovation and improvement that can work across professions and sectors. It may be possible to replicate improvement successes in healthcare settings within and across the broader systems of social, educational, and other human services that influence health outcomes in communities. Improvement methods could translate the rhetoric of collaboration, integration and alignment into practice across the fragmented health and human service sectors in the U.S. PMID:26699349

  6. Affordable Health Choices Act

    THOMAS, 111th Congress

    Sen. Harkin, Tom [D-IA

    2009-09-17

    09/17/2009 Placed on Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders. Calendar No. 161. (All Actions) Notes: For further action, see H.R.3590, which became Public Law 111-148 on 3/23/2010. Tracker: This bill has the status IntroducedHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  7. Freedom of conscience and health care in the United States of america: the conflict between public health and religious liberty in the patient protection and affordable care act.

    PubMed

    West-Oram, Peter

    2013-09-01

    The recent confirmation of the constitutionality of the Obama administration's Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) by the US Supreme Court has brought to the fore long-standing debates over individual liberty and religious freedom. Advocates of personal liberty are often critical, particularly in the USA, of public health measures which they deem to be overly restrictive of personal choice. In addition to the alleged restrictions of individual freedom of choice when it comes to the question of whether or not to purchase health insurance, opponents to the PPACA also argue that certain requirements of the Act violate the right to freedom of conscience by mandating support for services deemed immoral by religious groups. These issues continue the long running debate surrounding the demands of religious groups for special consideration in the realm of health care provision. In this paper I examine the requirements of the PPACA, and the impacts that religious, and other ideological, exemptions can have on public health, and argue that the exemptions provided for by the PPACA do not in fact impose unreasonable restrictions on religious freedom, but rather concede too much and in so doing endanger public health and some important individual liberties. PMID:23539432

  8. Women at risk: why increasing numbers of women are failing to get the health care they need and how the Affordable Care Act will help. Findings from the Commonwealth Fund Biennial Health Insurance Survey of 2010.

    PubMed

    Robertson, Ruth; Collins, Sara R

    2011-05-01

    Women have greater health care needs than men, and generally play larger roles in the health care of family members. Rising health care costs combined with sluggish income growth has contributed to losses in health insurance among women and rising rates of problems gaining necessary health care and paying medical bills. Women who seek coverage in the individual insurance market face additional hurdles--few plans offer maternity coverage and, in most states, insurance carriers charge higher premium rates to young women than men of the same age. The Affordable Care Act is bringing change for women through required free coverage of preventive care services, small business tax credits, new affordable coverage options, and insurance market reforms, including bans on gender rating. When the law is fully implemented in 2014, nearly all the 27 million working-age women who went without health insurance in 2010 will gain affordable and comprehensive benefits. PMID:21638798

  9. Health Professions Education: A Bridge to Quality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greiner, Ann C., Ed.; Knebel, Elisa, Ed.

    The 2001 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report "Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century" recommended that an interdisciplinary summit be held to develop next steps for reform of health professions education in order to enhance patient care quality and safety. In June 2002, the IOM convened this summit, which included 150…

  10. Organisational Learning for School Quality and Health

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lagrosen, Yvonne; Lagrosen, Stefan

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to shed light upon the connections between quality management, employee health and organisational learning in a school setting. Design/methodology/approach: The study is based on a quantitative survey. Items measuring health status and values of quality management were included in a questionnaire addressed to…

  11. The Affordable Care Act: The Value of Systemic Disruption

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    It is important to recognize the political and policy accomplishments of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), anticipate its limitations, and use the levers it provides strategically to address the problems it does not resolve. Passage of the ACA broke the political logjam that long stymied national progress toward equitable, quality, universal, affordable health care. It extends coverage for the uninsured who are disproportionately low income and people of color, curbs health insurance abuses, and initiates improvements in the quality of care. However, challenges to affordability and cost control persist. Public health advocates should mobilize for coverage for abortion care and for immigrants, encourage public-sector involvement in negotiating health care prices, and counter disinformation by opponents on the right. PMID:23409911

  12. Rapid, Affordable, and Point-of-Care Water Monitoring Via a Microfluidic DNA Sensor and a Mobile Interface for Global Health

    PubMed Central

    Ghanbari, Sarah; Ravikumar, Anusha; Seubert, John; Figueira, Silvia

    2013-01-01

    Contaminated water is a serious concern in many developing countries with severe health consequences particularly for children. Current methods for monitoring waterborne pathogens are often time consuming, expensive, and labor intensive, making them not suitable for these regions. Electrochemical detection in a microfluidic platform offers many advantages such as portability, minimal use of instrumentation, and easy integration with electronics. In many parts of the world, however, the required equipment for pathogen detection through electrochemical sensors is either not available or insufficiently portable, and operators may not be trained to use these sensors and interpret results, ultimately preventing its wide adoption. Counterintuitively, these same regions often have an extensive mobile phone infrastructure, suggesting the possibility of integrating electrochemical detection of bacterial pathogens with a mobile platform. Toward a solution to water quality interventions, we demonstrate a microfluidic electrochemical sensor combined with a mobile interface that detects the sequences from bacterial pathogens, suitable for rapid, affordable, and point-of-care water monitoring. We employ the transduction of DNA hybridization into a readily detectable electric signal by means of a conformational change of DNA stem-loop structure. Using this platform, we successfully demonstrate the detection of as low as 100 nM E. coli sequences and the automatic interpretation and mapping of the detection results via a mobile application. PMID:27170858

  13. Rapid, Affordable, and Point-of-Care Water Monitoring Via a Microfluidic DNA Sensor and a Mobile Interface for Global Health.

    PubMed

    Kim, Unyoung; Ghanbari, Sarah; Ravikumar, Anusha; Seubert, John; Figueira, Silvia

    2013-01-01

    Contaminated water is a serious concern in many developing countries with severe health consequences particularly for children. Current methods for monitoring waterborne pathogens are often time consuming, expensive, and labor intensive, making them not suitable for these regions. Electrochemical detection in a microfluidic platform offers many advantages such as portability, minimal use of instrumentation, and easy integration with electronics. In many parts of the world, however, the required equipment for pathogen detection through electrochemical sensors is either not available or insufficiently portable, and operators may not be trained to use these sensors and interpret results, ultimately preventing its wide adoption. Counterintuitively, these same regions often have an extensive mobile phone infrastructure, suggesting the possibility of integrating electrochemical detection of bacterial pathogens with a mobile platform. Toward a solution to water quality interventions, we demonstrate a microfluidic electrochemical sensor combined with a mobile interface that detects the sequences from bacterial pathogens, suitable for rapid, affordable, and point-of-care water monitoring. We employ the transduction of DNA hybridization into a readily detectable electric signal by means of a conformational change of DNA stem-loop structure. Using this platform, we successfully demonstrate the detection of as low as 100 nM E. coli sequences and the automatic interpretation and mapping of the detection results via a mobile application. PMID:27170858

  14. Developing quality indicators for family support services in community team-based mental health care.

    PubMed

    Serene Olin, S; Kutash, Krista; Pollock, Michele; Burns, Barbara J; Kuppinger, Anne; Craig, Nancy; Purdy, Frances; Armusewicz, Kelsey; Wisdom, Jennifer; Hoagwood, Kimberly E

    2014-01-01

    Quality indicators for programs integrating parent-delivered family support services for children's mental health have not been systematically developed. Increasing emphasis on accountability under the Affordable Care Act highlights the importance of quality-benchmarking efforts. Using a modified Delphi approach, quality indicators were developed for both program level and family support specialist level practices. These indicators were pilot tested with 21 community-based mental health programs. Psychometric properties of these indicators are reported; variations in program and family support specialist performance suggest the utility of these indicators as tools to guide policies and practices in organizations that integrate parent-delivered family support service components. PMID:23709287

  15. Perceptions of Physical Inspections as a Tool to Protect Housing Quality and Promote Health Equity.

    PubMed

    Holtzen, Holly; Klein, Elizabeth G; Keller, Brittney; Hood, Nancy

    2016-01-01

    Physical inspections that assess how well affordable housing properties meet quality and safety standards help to ensure that low-income tenants live in a healthy built environment. This study was part of a larger Health Impact Assessment (HIA) conducted between January 2012 and November 2013 to inform policymakers about the potential health consequences of a proposed policy decision to align the physical inspections required by housing funding agencies, which would result in a reduction of the frequency of physical inspections. Key informant interviews (n=18) of property managers and tenants were used to explore the inspection process, identification of housing quality issues, and potential effects on the health of affordable housing tenants and the impact on property management practices. Results indicate that physical inspection frequency may be an important trigger for property managers and tenants to adhere to proper maintenance schedules. PMID:27180694

  16. Quality indicators and quality assessment in child health

    PubMed Central

    Kavanagh, Patricia L.; Adams, William G.; Wang, C. Jason

    2009-01-01

    Quality indicators are systematically developed statements that can be used to assess the appropriateness of specific healthcare decisions, services and outcomes. In this review, we highlight the range and type of indicators that have been developed for children in the UK and US by prominent governmental agencies and private organizations. We also classify these indicators in an effort to identify areas of child health that may lack quality measurement activity. We review the current state of health information technology in both countries since these systems are vital to quality efforts. Finally, we propose several recommendations to advance the quality indicator development agenda for children. The convergence of quality measurement and indicator development, a growing scientific evidence base and integrated information systems in healthcare may lead to substantial improvements for child health in the 21st century. PMID:19307196

  17. 75 FR 60482 - Proposed Extension of Information Collection Request Submitted for Public Comment; Affordable...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-09-30

    ... Comment; Affordable Care Act Enrollment Opportunity Notice Relating to Dependent Coverage; Affordable Care Act Grandfathered Health Plan Disclosure and Recordkeeping Requirement; Affordable Care Act Rescission Notice; Affordable Care Act Patient Protections Notice; Affordable Care Act Enrollment Opportunity...

  18. How to ensure quality of health accounts.

    PubMed

    van Mosseveld, Cornelis; Hernández-Peña, Patricia; Arán, Daniel; Cherilova, Veneta; Mataria, Awad

    2016-05-01

    Policy makers need up-to-date and reliable information to formulate health policies and monitor their implementation. Given that financing is one of the pillars of the health system, quality of financing data is essential. Quality is a key element but difficult to measure. Increasing quality on financing data involves the use of standard procedures and methods. Current standard framework, the System of Health Accounts 2011, needs to be implemented with checks and controls on the individual as well as aggregated data. Data input on the construction of the accounts and their related metadata are subject to quality measures. In this paper we address a first proposal of the components of the quality in health accounts reporting. The paper assesses Quality Of Health Accounts at four stages: (1) Design; (2) Development; (3) Management; and (4) Reporting. It explains what is needed at each stage to ensure reliable results which are fit for informing decision-making. Quality is essential for reliability and trust among all stakeholders, who are responsible of data provision, construction of the accounts and using their results. Quality measurement in health accounts is a reality needing effort. PMID:27048758

  19. Measuring the quality of health care.

    PubMed

    Custer, W

    1995-03-01

    This Issue Brief examines some of the issues involved in defining and measuring the quality of health care and in implementing quality measures. It discusses the importance of measures of health care quality in the evolving health care delivery system, examines some of the conceptual issues involved in defining quality of care, and discusses some of the measures of health care quality and how these measures have been implemented in the health care delivery system. The major impetus for quality assurance programs is cost management: it is an attempt to allocate scarce health care resources efficiently. This requires making choices among alternatives, which may mean that maximizing quality of care for whole populations may not maximize the quality of care for individuals. Quality, in terms of any single good or service, has a number of dimensions. Health care is a complex bundle of services, and each component service within an episode of care affects the other components and the patients differently. Moreover, patients differ in numerous ways, which means that similar symptoms may require different services if care is to be effective. Measuring quality of health care services requires accounting for all of these factors. In attempting to manage health care costs, employers and other private health plans have begun to employ process measures of quality, i.e., evaluating caregivers' activities, the decisions made at each step in an episode of illness, and the appropriateness of the care provided. Process is an important component of quality measures because it focuses directly on the uncertainty in the efficacy of treatment. Given this uncertainty, the logic of medical decision making is an important determinant of quality and cost effectiveness. Examining the process of care involves assembling a panel of physicians who review medical records to determine the appropriateness of the care received. Providers have increasingly found that their medical decision making

  20. Achieving Quality Health Services for Adolescents.

    PubMed

    2016-08-01

    This update of the 2008 statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics redirects the discussion of quality health care from the theoretical to the practical within the medical home. This statement reviews the evolution of the medical home concept and challenges the provision of quality adolescent health care within the patient-centered medical home. Areas of attention for quality adolescent health care are reviewed, including developmentally appropriate care, confidentiality, location of adolescent care, providers who offer such care, the role of research in advancing care, and the transition to adult care. PMID:27432849

  1. "Medical tourism" and the global marketplace in health services: U.S. patients, international hospitals, and the search for affordable health care.

    PubMed

    Turner, Leigh

    2010-01-01

    Health services are now advertised in a global marketplace. Hip and knee replacements, ophthalmologic procedures, cosmetic surgery, cardiac care, organ transplants, and stem cell injections are all available for purchase in the global health services marketplace. "Medical tourism" companies market "sun and surgery" packages and arrange care at international hospitals in Costa Rica, India, Mexico, Singapore, Thailand, and other destination nations. Just as automobile manufacturing and textile production moved outside the United States, American patients are "offshoring" themselves to facilities that use low labor costs to gain competitive advantage in the marketplace. Proponents of medical tourism argue that a global market in health services will promote consumer choice, foster competition among hospitals, and enable customers to purchase high-quality care at medical facilities around the world. Skeptics raise concerns about quality of care and patient safety, information disclosure to patients, legal redress when patients are harmed while receiving care at international hospitals, and harms to public health care systems in destination nations. The emergence of a global market in health services will have profound consequences for health insurance, delivery of health services, patient-physician relationships, publicly funded health care, and the spread of medical consumerism. PMID:20799670

  2. Quality Assurance in Community Mental Health Centers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Racusin, Robert; Krell, Helen

    1980-01-01

    Advantages and disadvantages to various methods of assuring quality and accountability in community mental health centers are discussed. Examples are external structure review, peer monitoring, and site visitation. (LAB)

  3. Quality Circles and Health Promotion Planning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Galli, Nicholas; Corry, James M.

    1986-01-01

    This article explores the process of health education program planning, presents the model of quality circles, and examines the variables upon which decisions for or against specific programs are made within an institution. (MT)

  4. Health care choices: sharing the quality message.

    PubMed

    2001-01-01

    Information on health-care quality (in the form of report cards) is playing an increasingly important role in consumers' health-care decision making. In this brief we discuss how you can help your clients sort through available quality information and how you can prepare a report card using the approach developed by the Foundation for Accountability (FACCT), our guest authors this month. PMID:11859891

  5. Measuring Physical Neighborhood Quality Related to Health

    PubMed Central

    Rollings, Kimberly A.; Wells, Nancy M.; Evans, Gary W.

    2015-01-01

    Although sociodemographic factors are one aspect of understanding the effects of neighborhood environments on health, equating neighborhood quality with socioeconomic status ignores the important role of physical neighborhood attributes. Prior work on neighborhood environments and health has relied primarily on level of socioeconomic disadvantage as the indicator of neighborhood quality without attention to physical neighborhood quality. A small but increasing number of studies have assessed neighborhood physical characteristics. Findings generally indicate that there is an association between living in deprived neighborhoods and poor health outcomes, but rigorous evidence linking specific physical neighborhood attributes to particular health outcomes is lacking. This paper discusses the methodological challenges and limitations of measuring physical neighborhood environments relevant to health and concludes with proposed directions for future work. PMID:25938692

  6. Health reform and the quality assurance imperative.

    PubMed

    Webber, A

    The administration's blueprint for healthcare reform contains a number of positive features, including a national healthcare information database, quality "report cards," and state-based patient complaint offices. Missing from the plan, however, is "an active quality monitoring system that holds health plans and providers publicly accountable for improved performance," says Andrew Webber, Executive Vice President of the American Medical Peer Review Association, the national association of Peer Review Organizations (PROs). His antidote includes the creation of an independent, state-based network to coordinate quality assurance activities; a program to monitor compliance with practice guidelines; and a quality foundation to measure, manage, improve, and oversee quality. PMID:10131335

  7. Quality Improvement Efforts in Pediatric Oral Health.

    PubMed

    Ng, Man Wai

    2016-04-01

    Quality improvement (QI) and measurement are increasingly used in health care to improve patient care and outcomes. Despite current barriers in oral health measurement, there are nascent QI and measurement efforts emerging. This paper describes the role that QI and measurement can play in improving oral health care delivery in clinical practice by presenting a QI initiative that aimed to test and implement a chronic disease management approach to address early childhood caries. PMID:27265978

  8. Quality of health care, survival and health outcomes in Ghana.

    PubMed

    Lavy, V; Strauss, J; Thomas, D; de Vreyer, P

    1996-06-01

    This paper analyzes the effect of quality and accessibility of health services and other public infrastructure on the health of children in Ghana. We focus on child survival, child height and weight using data from the Ghana Living Standards Survey. The results suggest an important role for public health policy in eliminating the rural-urban disparities in health status and particularly in improving the health status of rural children and reducing their mortality rates. Increased availability of birth services and other related child programs, as well as Improved water and sanitation infrastructure would have an immediate payoff. PMID:10159445

  9. Review Of Internet Health Information Quality Initiatives

    PubMed Central

    Dzenowagis, Joan

    2001-01-01

    Background The massive growth of health information on the Internet; the global nature of the Internet; the seismic shift taking place in the relationships of various actors in this arena, and the absence of real protection from harm for citizens who use the Internet for health purposes are seen to be real problems. One response to many of these problems has been the burgeoning output of codes of conduct by numerous organizations trying to address quality of health information. Objectives Review the major self-regulatory initiatives in the English-speaking world to develop quality and ethical standards for health information on the Internet. Compare and analyze the approaches taken by the different initiatives. Clarify the issues around the development and enforcement of standards. Methods Quality initiatives selected meet one or more of the following criteria: Self-regulatory. A reasonable constituency. Diversity (eg, of philosophy, approach and process)-to achieve balance and wide representation, and to illustrate and compare different approaches. Historic value. A wider reach than a national audience, except when its reach is a significant sector of the Internet health information industry. The initiatives were compared in 3 ways: (1) Analysis and comparison of: key concepts, mechanism, or approach. Analysis of: the obligations that a provider has to meet to comply with the given initiative, the intended beneficiaries of that initiative, and the burdens imposed on different actors. These burdens are described in terms of their effect on the long-term sustainability and maintenance of the initiative by its developers. Analysis of the enforcement mechanisms. (2) Analysis and comparison by type of sponsoring organization, the reach of the initiative, and the sources of funding of the initiative or the sponsoring organization. (3) How the various initiatives fall under 1 of 3 key mechanisms and comparison of the advantages and disadvantages of these key mechanisms

  10. Patient and provider perspectives on quality and health system effectiveness in a transition economy: evidence from Ukraine.

    PubMed

    Luck, J; Peabody, J W; DeMaria, L M; Alvarado, C S; Menon, R

    2014-08-01

    Facing a severe population health crisis due to noncommunicable diseases, Ukraine and other former Soviet republics and Eastern European countries have a pressing need for more effective health systems. Policies to enhance health system effectiveness should consider the perspectives of different stakeholder groups, including providers as well as patients. In addition, policies that directly target the quality of clinical care should be based on objective performance measures. In 2009 and 2010 we conducted a coordinated series of household and facility-level surveys to capture the perspectives of Ukrainian household members, outpatient clinic patients, and physicians regarding the country's health system overall, as well as the quality, access, and affordability of health care. We objectively measured the quality of care for heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease using CPV(®) vignettes. There was broad agreement among household respondents (79%) and physicians (95%) that Ukraine's health system should be reformed. CPV(®) results indicate that the quality of care for common noncommunicable diseases is poor in all regions of the country and in hospitals as well as polyclinics. However, perspectives about the quality of care differ, with household respondents seeing quality as a serious concern, clinic patients having more positive perceptions, and physicians not viewing quality as a reform priority. All stakeholder groups viewed affordability as a problem. These findings have several implications for policies to enhance health system effectiveness. The shared desire for health system reform among all stakeholder groups provides a basis for action in Ukraine. Improving quality, strengthening primary care, and enhancing affordability should be major goals of new health policies. Policies to improve quality directly, such as pay-for-performance, would be mutually reinforcing with purchasing reforms such as transparent payment mechanisms. Such policies

  11. Quality measurement indicators for Iranian Health Centers

    PubMed Central

    Moslehi, Shandiz; Atefi Manesh, Pezhman; Sarabi Asiabar, Ali

    2015-01-01

    Background: Recently, quality is a serious concern in development of organizations. There are various indicators to assess quality and the purpose of this study was to identify the main indicators for quality measurement of Iranian health centers. Methods: This qualitative study was conducted in three stages: first, review of the literature was performed to identify different indicators for quality measurement in health centers; second, a tworound Delphi process was used with participation of 18 experts in both rounds; third, Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) method was applied to give weights to each indicator. Results: Twenty-seven indicators were identified from the literature review stage. The Delphi method reduced the list to 4 indicators. Developing a quality plan in the health center had the highest weight (38%) and percentage of followed complaints the lowest (12%). The consistency rate was 7.2% indicating appropriateness of the data. Conclusion: This list of indicators can be used as a template for measuring quality of health centers in Iran and possibly in other developing countries. PMID:26034730

  12. Does Competition Improve Health Care Quality?

    PubMed Central

    Scanlon, Dennis P; Swaminathan, Shailender; Lee, Woolton; Chernew, Michael

    2008-01-01

    Objective To identify the effect of competition on health maintenance organizations' (HMOs) quality measures. Study Design Longitudinal analysis of a 5-year panel of the Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDIS) and Consumer Assessment of Health Plans Survey® (CAHPS) data (calendar years 1998–2002). All plans submitting data to the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) were included regardless of their decision to allow NCQA to disclose their results publicly. Data Sources NCQA, Interstudy, the Area Resource File, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Methods Fixed-effects models were estimated that relate HMO competition to HMO quality controlling for an unmeasured, time-invariant plan, and market traits. Results are compared with estimates from models reliant on cross-sectional variation. Principal Findings Estimates suggest that plan quality does not improve with increased levels of HMO competition (as measured by either the Herfindahl index or the number of HMOs). Similarly, increased HMO penetration is generally not associated with improved quality. Cross-sectional models tend to suggest an inverse relationship between competition and quality. Conclusions The strategies that promote competition among HMOs in the current market setting may not lead to improved HMO quality. It is possible that price competition dominates, with purchasers and consumers preferring lower premiums at the expense of improved quality, as measured by HEDIS and CAHPS. It is also possible that the fragmentation associated with competition hinders quality improvement. PMID:18793214

  13. [Quality assurance in occupational health services].

    PubMed

    Michalak, J

    1996-01-01

    The general conditions influencing the quality assurance and audit in Polish occupational health services are presented. The factors promoting or hampering the implementation of quality assurance and audits are also discussed. The major influence on the transformation of Polish occupational health services in exorted by employers who are committed to cover the costs of the obligatory prophylactic examination of their employees. This is the factor which also contributes to the improvement of quality if services. The definitions of the most important terms are reviewed to highlight their accordance with the needs of occupational health services in Poland. The examples of audit are presented and the elements of selected methods of auditing are suggested to be adopted in Poland. PMID:8760511

  14. Affordable Care Act and Diabetes Mellitus.

    PubMed

    Shi, Qian; Nellans, Frank P; Shi, Lizheng

    2015-12-01

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has the potential for great impact on U.S. health care, especially for chronic disease patients requiring long-term care and management. The act was designed to improve insurance coverage, health care access, and quality of care for all Americans, which will assist patients with diabetes mellitus in acquiring routine monitoring and diabetes-related complication screening for better health management and outcomes. There is great potential for patients with diabetes to benefit from the new policy mandating health insurance coverage and plan improvement, Medicaid expansion, minimum coverage guarantees, and free preventative care. However, policy variability among states and ACA implementation present challenges to people with diabetes in understanding and optimizing ACA impact. This paper aims to select the most influential components of the ACA as relates to people with diabetes and discuss how the ACA may improve health care for this vulnerable population. PMID:26458377

  15. Quality and Certification of Electronic Health Records

    PubMed Central

    Hoerbst, A.; Ammenwerth, E.

    2010-01-01

    Background Numerous projects, initiatives, and programs are dedicated to the development of Electronic Health Records (EHR) worldwide. Increasingly more of these plans have recently been brought from a scientific environment to real life applications. In this context, quality is a crucial factor with regard to the acceptance and utility of Electronic Health Records. However, the dissemination of the existing quality approaches is often rather limited. Objectives The present paper aims at the description and comparison of the current major quality certification approaches to EHRs. Methods A literature analysis was carried out in order to identify the relevant publications with regard to EHR quality certification. PubMed, ACM Digital Library, IEEExplore, CiteSeer, and Google (Scholar) were used to collect relevant sources. The documents that were obtained were analyzed using techniques of qualitative content analysis. Results The analysis discusses and compares the quality approaches of CCHIT, EuroRec, IHE, openEHR, and EN13606. These approaches differ with regard to their focus, support of service-oriented EHRs, process of (re-)certification and testing, number of systems certified and tested, supporting organizations, and regional relevance. Discussion The analyzed approaches show differences with regard to their structure and processes. System vendors can exploit these approaches in order to improve and certify their information systems. Health care organizations can use these approaches to support selection processes or to assess the quality of their own information systems. PMID:23616834

  16. Mammography Screening in a Large Health System Following the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force Recommendations and the Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Heidi D.; Weerasinghe, Roshanthi; Wang, Lian; Grunkemeier, Gary

    2015-01-01

    Background Practice recommendations for mammography screening were issued by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force in 2009 and expansion of insurance coverage was provided under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act soon thereafter, yet the influence of these changes on screening practices in the United States is not known. Methods To determine changes in mammography screening and their associations with new practice recommendations and the Affordable Care Act, we examined patient-level data from 249,803 screening mammograms from January 1, 2008 through December 31, 2012 in a large community-based health system in the northwestern United States. Associations were determined by an intervention analysis of time-series data method. Results Among women screened, 64% were age 50-74 years; 84% self-identified as white race; 62% had commercial insurance; and 70% were seen in facilities located in metropolitan areas. Practice recommendations were associated with decreased screening volumes among women age <40 (-37.4 mammograms/month; -39.4% change; P<0.001), 40-49 (-106.0 mammograms/month; -11.2% change; P<0.001), and ≥75 (-54.7 mammograms/month; -10.0% change; P<0.001), but not women age 50-74. Implementation of the Affordable Care Act was associated with increased screening among women age 50-74 (+184.3 mammograms/month; +7.2% change; P=0.001), but not women <40 or ≥75; increases for age 40-49 were of borderline statistical significance (+56.9 mammograms/month; +6% change; P=0.06). Practice recommendations were also associated with decreased screening for women with commercial insurance, while the Affordable Care Act was associated with increased screening for women with Medicare, Medicaid, or other noncommercial sources of payment. Conclusions Mammography screening volumes in a large community health system decreased among women age <50 and ≥75 in association with new U.S. Preventive Services Task Force practice recommendations, while insurance coverage

  17. Overview of the Affordable Care Act's impact on military and veteran mental health services: nine implications for significant improvements in care.

    PubMed

    Russell, Mark C; Figley, Charles R

    2014-01-01

    On March 23, 2010, President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act (ACA) into law. Implications of the ACA on mental health care for 9.7 million military active-duty, reserve, and family members and 22.2 million veterans, as well as 1.3 uninsured veterans, is reviewed in light of a major crisis. The authors trace historical roots of the ACA to the World War II generation and efforts to transform the mental health care system by implementing hard-won war trauma lessons. The authors posit 9 principles reflected in the ACA that represent unfulfilled generational war trauma lessons and potential transformation of the military and national mental health care systems. PMID:24669877

  18. QUALITY ASSURANCE GUIDELINES FOR ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH RESEARCH

    EPA Science Inventory

    This document provides conceptual guidelines for the development, implementation and evaluation of research task quality assurance plans for the staff of the Health Effects Research Laboratory (HERL/RTP) of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, North C...

  19. Women's Preventive Services Guidelines Affordable Care Act Expands Prevention Coverage for Women's Health and Well-Being

    MedlinePlus

    ... 2012. Type of Preventive Service HHS Guideline for Health Insurance Coverage Frequency Well-woman visits. Well-woman preventive ... established or maintained by religious employers (and group health insurance coverage provided in connection with such plans) are ...

  20. Oral Health-related Quality of Life

    PubMed Central

    Sischo, L.; Broder, H.L.

    2011-01-01

    Despite its relatively recent emergence over the past few decades, oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) has important implications for the clinical practice of dentistry and dental research. OHRQoL is a multidimensional construct that includes a subjective evaluation of the individual’s oral health, functional well-being, emotional well-being, expectations and satisfaction with care, and sense of self. It has wide-reaching applications in survey and clinical research. OHRQoL is an integral part of general health and well-being. In fact, it is recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) as an important segment of the Global Oral Health Program (2003). This paper identifies the what, why, and how of OHRQoL and presents an oral health theoretical model. The relevance of OHRQoL for dental practitioners and patients in community-based dental practices is presented. Implications for health policy and related oral health disparities are also discussed. A supplemental Appendix contains a Medline and ProQuest literature search regarding OHRQoL research from 1990-2010 by discipline and research design (e.g., descriptive, longitudinal, clinical trial, etc.). The search identified 300 articles with a notable surge in OHRQoL research in pediatrics and orthodontics in recent years. PMID:21422477

  1. Climate change, air quality, and human health.

    PubMed

    Kinney, Patrick L

    2008-11-01

    Weather and climate play important roles in determining patterns of air quality over multiple scales in time and space, owing to the fact that emissions, transport, dilution, chemical transformation, and eventual deposition of air pollutants all can be influenced by meteorologic variables such as temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction, and mixing height. There is growing recognition that development of optimal control strategies for key pollutants like ozone and fine particles now requires assessment of potential future climate conditions and their influence on the attainment of air quality objectives. In addition, other air contaminants of relevance to human health, including smoke from wildfires and airborne pollens and molds, may be influenced by climate change. In this study, the focus is on the ways in which health-relevant measures of air quality, including ozone, particulate matter, and aeroallergens, may be affected by climate variability and change. The small but growing literature focusing on climate impacts on air quality, how these influences may play out in future decades, and the implications for human health is reviewed. Based on the observed and anticipated impacts, adaptation strategies and research needs are discussed. PMID:18929972

  2. Genetic counselors and health literacy: the role of genetic counselors in developing a web-based resource about the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Mann, Sylvia; Mui, Pauline; Boomsma, Jennifer; Hasegawa, Lianne

    2015-06-01

    The Western States Genetic Services Collaborative (WSGSC) recognized the need for clear and understandable information about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for families throughout the life course. The genetic counselors working in the WSGSC developed, tested, and implemented a web resource ( http://www.westernstatesgenetics.org/ACA_home.htm ) to help families navigate information about the ACA tailored to their life situation. The training and experience of genetic counselors provide the skills needed to translate complicated information, like that of the ACA, into formats that the general public can comprehend. The website went public in October 2013, and it has been positively received. The development of this website is a good case study in how genetic counseling skills can be applied to public health education and improving health literacy. PMID:25502406

  3. Oral health related quality of life

    PubMed Central

    Bennadi, Darshana; Reddy, C. V. K.

    2013-01-01

    Diseases and disorders that damage the mouth and face can disturb well-being and his self-esteem. Oral health-related quality of life (OHRQOL) is a relatively new but rapidly growing notion. The concept of OHRQOL can become a tool to understand and shape not only the state of clinical practice, dental research and dental education but also that of community at large. There are different approaches to measure OHRQOL; the most popular one is multiple item questionnaires. OHRQOL should be the basis for any oral health programme development. Moreover, research at the conceptual level is needed in countries where OHRQOL has not been previously assessed, including India. PMID:24478972

  4. [Quality management in a public health agency].

    PubMed

    Villalbí, Joan R; Ballestín, Manuela; Casas, Conrad; Subirana, Teresa

    2012-01-01

    This article describes the introduction of quality improvement actions in a public health organization. After ISO 17025 accreditation, which was legally mandated, was granted to the official control laboratory, the management decided to expand a quality policy in 2003, through a series of actions based on process analysis and proposals for improvement, further definition of standard operating procedures, exploration of users' opinions, the creation of improvement groups, and external audits or certification. The organizational response to these initiatives was diverse. External audit or certification of services seems to be the most powerful tool for change. Costing studies showed that up to 75% of the total expenditure of the agency in 2010 was spent on public health services subject to external audit or certification. PMID:22425456

  5. [Environmental quality: wellfare, confort and health].

    PubMed

    Vargas Marcos, Francisco; Gallego Pulgarín, Isabel

    2005-01-01

    Different ways of interpreting environmental conditions have led to the development of concepts such as the sick building, indoor air quality or indoor environment quality, for understanding the complexity of the pollutants in enclosed environments and the implications thereof on the health. The "Indoor Environment Quality" proposal is an advancement, operative and conceptual, surpassing amply prior ones, given that it orients the actions toward healthy environments without limiting the idea of pollution to the air alone. The aim is identifying the competence to preventing hazards related to exposure to pollutants within the confines of indoor environments and know the legislative framework useful for taking the actions. Optimum conditions within indoor environments must redound in health, well-being and comfort with regard to both working life as well as the environments in which everyday activities outside of work, extracurricular, leisure-time and entertainment activities are carried out. Today's society is demanding safe, clean, well-climatized places, for this is necessary to integrate the inhabitant's perceptions and demands and achieve an optimum balance among social standards, energy use and sustainable development. Legislation is being further expanded upon in the direction of occupational health and safety and the regulation of chemical substances. Environmental Health carries out prevention and control tasks, takes part in the enforcement of international pollution and waste reduction agreements and promotes measures for carrying out the European Environment and Health Strategy. It is considered useful the elaboration of protocols for the evaluation and administration gives the risks associated to the interior pollutants. PMID:15913058

  6. Sharing risk between payer and provider by leasing health technologies: an affordable and effective reimbursement strategy for innovative technologies?

    PubMed

    Edlin, Richard; Hall, Peter; Wallner, Klemens; McCabe, Christopher

    2014-06-01

    The challenge of implementing high-cost innovative technologies in health care systems operating under significant budgetary pressure has led to a radical shift in the health technology reimbursement landscape. New reimbursement strategies attempt to reduce the risk of making the wrong decision, that is, paying for a technology that is not good value for the health care system, while promoting the adoption of innovative technologies into clinical practice. The remaining risk, however, is not shared between the manufacturer and the health care payer at the individual purchase level; it continues to be passed from the manufacturer to the payer at the time of purchase. In this article, we propose a health technology payment strategy-technology leasing reimbursement scheme-that allows the sharing of risk between the manufacturer and the payer: the replacing of up-front payments with a stream of payments spread over the expected duration of benefit from the technology, subject to the technology delivering the claimed health benefit. Using trastuzumab (Herceptin) in early breast cancer as an exemplar technology, we show how a technology leasing reimbursement scheme not only reduces the total budgetary impact of the innovative technology but also truly shares risk between the manufacturer and the health care system, while reducing the value of further research and thus promoting the rapid adoption of innovative technologies into clinical practice. PMID:24969005

  7. Making Quality Health Websites a National Public Health Priority: Toward Quality Standards

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Background Most US adults have limited health literacy skills. They struggle to understand complex health information and services and to make informed health decisions. The Internet has quickly become one of the most popular places for people to search for information about their health, thereby making access to quality information on the Web a priority. However, there are no standardized criteria for evaluating Web-based health information. Every 10 years, the US Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (ODPHP) develops a set of measurable objectives for improving the health of the nation over the coming decade, known as Healthy People. There are two objectives in Healthy People 2020 related to website quality. The first is objective Health Communication and Health Information Technology (HC/HIT) 8.1: increase the proportion of health-related websites that meet 3 or more evaluation criteria for disclosing information that can be used to assess information reliability. The second is objective HC/HIT-8.2: increase the proportion of health-related websites that follow established usability principles. Objective The ODPHP conducted a nationwide assessment of the quality of Web-based health information using the Healthy People 2020 objectives. The ODPHP aimed to establish (1) a standardized approach to defining and measuring the quality of health websites; (2) benchmarks for measurement; (3) baseline data points to capture the current status of website quality; and (4) targets to drive improvement. Methods The ODPHP developed the National Quality Health Website Survey instrument to assess the quality of health-related websites. The ODPHP used this survey to review 100 top-ranked health-related websites in order to set baseline data points for these two objectives. The ODPHP then set targets to drive improvement by 2020. Results This study reviewed 100 health-related websites. For objective HC/HIT-8.1, a total of 58 out

  8. UnitedHealth Group

    Cancer.gov

    UnitedHealth Group provides accessible and affordable services, improved quality of care, coordinated health care efforts, and a supportive environment for shared decision making between patients and their physicians.

  9. Quality of Life, Health Status, and Depression

    PubMed Central

    Pike, Nancy A.; Evangelista, Lorraine S.; Doering, Lynn V.; Eastwood, Jo-Ann; Lewis, Alan B.; Child, John S.

    2012-01-01

    Background Quality of life (QOL) in adolescents and adults who have undergone the Fontan procedure and are living with only 1 ventricle is presumed to be diminished. Objectives This study aimed to compare QOL, health status, and prevalence of depression in adolescents/adults after the Fontan procedure with healthy counterparts and to identify predictors of QOL in the Fontan group. Methods Using a comparative, cross-sectional design, 54 adolescents and adults with single ventricle congenital heart disease who have undergone the Fontan procedure were compared with 66 age-matched healthy counterparts. Quality of life, health status, depression, and social support were measured using the Satisfaction With Life Scale, Short Form Survey Version 2, Patient Health Questionnaire Depression Module, and Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support. Clinical variables were abstracted from medical records. Predictors of QOL were determined using multiple linear regression. Results Adolescents and adults in the Fontan group reported lower physical health status (mean [SD] = 46.5 [9.3] vs mean [SD] = 55.9 [5.1], P < .001) and were more depressed (mean [SD] = 7.3 [5.9] vs mean [SD] = 4.5 [4.3], P < .004) than their healthy counterparts. There were no differences in QOL, mental health status, or social support between the 2 groups. Functional status (New York Heart Association class), depression, and social support accounted for 55% of the variance in QOL in the Fontan group. Conclusions Despite lower levels of physical health, the QOL of Fontan patients was comparable with that of their healthy counterparts; this finding contradicts previous proxy reports, self-reports, and assumptions that QOL is lower in patients with complex single ventricle congenital heart disease. However, because Fontan patients were more depressed than their healthy counterparts, the need for early screening and detection is warranted. PMID:21912272

  10. Quality of health care: the responsibility of health care professionals in delivering high quality services.

    PubMed

    Giangrande, A

    1998-11-01

    According to a recent definition, quality of care consists of the degree to which health services increase the likelihood of desired health outcomes and are consistent with current professional knowledge; a definition that introduces both requirements of outcomes and the appropriateness of the process used. Clearly many different figures are interested in quality assessment initiatives in the health care field and these include patients, administrators and doctors each having different perspective. Doctors obviously pay greater attention to technical quality and results, giving greater emphasis to the health of the individual patient, tending to give priority to technical excellence and interaction between patient and doctor. Although the perspective of health care professionals is widely acknowledged to be important and useful, other perspectives on quality have been emphasised in recent years. The most important of these is the recognition that care must be responsive to the preferences and values of the consumers of health care services. In complete harmony with one's own professional commitment, the attention to the perspectives of patients must give physician the chance to identify methods of measuring and verifying quality which take account of the expectations of the many groups with an interest in improving the functioning of the health system. A global approach in the health field is needed the more specialization advances. The quality of medicine lies in its capacity to integrate what science says is appropriate and to be recommended, what can be reconciled with human rights and the self determination of the patient and what can be achieved by optimising available resources. In this complex context, the doctor could take on both the role of the person who decides on the use of resources and the one of social mediator. PMID:9894749

  11. Quality Assurance for Social Service Programs: Lessons from Health Care.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coulton, Claudia J.

    1982-01-01

    Suggests that many aspects of quality assurance in health care can be applied to social service agencies. Reviews what has been learned about quality assurance in health care and suggests guidelines for its implementation in social services. (Author/JAC)

  12. Microsimulation of Private Health Insurance and Medicaid Take-Up Following the U.S. Supreme Court Decision Upholding the Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Parente, Stephen T; Feldman, Roger

    2013-01-01

    Objective To predict take-up of private health insurance and Medicaid following the U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Data Sources Data came from three large employers and a sampling of premiums from http://ehealthinsurance.com. We supplemented the employer data with information on state Medicaid eligibility and costs from the Kaiser Family Foundation. National predictions were based on the MEPS Household Component. Study Design We estimated a conditional logit model of health plan choice in the large group market. Using the coefficients from the choice model, we predicted take-up in the group and individual health insurance markets. Following ACA implementation, we added choices to the individual market corresponding to plans that will be available in state and federal exchanges. Depending on eligibility for premium subsidies, we reduced the out-of-pocket premiums for those choices. We simulated several possible patterns for states opting out of the Medicaid expansion, as allowed by the Supreme Court. Principal Findings The ACA will increase coverage substantially in the private insurance market and Medicaid. HSAs will remain desirable in both the individual and employer markets. Conclusions If states opt out of the Medicaid expansion, this could increase the federal cost of health reform, while reducing the number of newly covered lives. PMID:23398372

  13. Personal health management systems: applying the full power of software to improve the quality and efficiency of care.

    PubMed

    Neupert, Peter; Mundie, Craig

    2009-01-01

    Electronic medical records and personal health records have made good progress in reducing costs and inefficiencies, but the key to building a health care delivery system for the twenty-first century is to evolve toward personal health management systems that apply the full power of software to improve patient care. Such systems can enable better outcomes and improve the satisfaction of consumers and providers alike. Through technology innovation, sensible policy approaches, and industrywide collaboration, we can empower individuals to take control of their health while enabling providers and payers to broaden access to higher-quality, more affordable care. PMID:19275994

  14. New health care law may spell opportunity for quality managers.

    PubMed

    2010-06-01

    New health care law emphasizes quality, safety, and efficiency. Pay-for-performance emphasis requires attention of quality managers. Many quality provisions will not kick in for several years. PMID:20491197

  15. Quality of indoor residential air and health

    PubMed Central

    Dales, Robert; Liu, Ling; Wheeler, Amanda J.; Gilbert, Nicolas L.

    2008-01-01

    About 90% of our time is spent indoors where we are exposed to chemical and biological contaminants and possibly to carcinogens. These agents may influence the risk of developing nonspecific respiratory and neurologic symptoms, allergies, asthma and lung cancer. We review the sources, health effects and control strategies for several of these agents. There are conflicting data about indoor allergens. Early exposure may increase or may decrease the risk of future sensitization. Reports of indoor moulds or dampness or both are consistently associated with increased respiratory symptoms but causality has not been established. After cigarette smoking, exposure to environmental tobacco smoke and radon are the most common causes of lung cancer. Homeowners can improve the air quality in their homes, often with relatively simple measures, which should provide health benefits. PMID:18625986

  16. The New Knowledge Environment: Quality Initiatives in Health Sciences Libraries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nagle, Ellen

    1996-01-01

    Reviews changes in health sciences libraries, including the evolving role of health sciences librarians, education and training of health sciences librarians, rethinking reference services, impact on quality health care, improving the value of information, virtual libraries, National Library of Medicine initiatives, and quality initiatives. (LRW)

  17. Water Quality and Sustainable Environmental Health

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Setegn, S. G.

    2014-12-01

    Lack of adequate safe water, the pollution of the aquatic environment and the mismanagement of resources are major causes of ill-health and mortality, particularly in the developing countries. In order to accommodate more growth, sustainable fresh water resource management will need to be included in future development plans. One of the major environmental issues of concern to policy-makers is the increased vulnerability of ground water quality. The main challenge for the sustainability of water resources is the control of water pollution. To understand the sustainability of the water resources, one needs to understand the impact of future land use and climate changes on the natural resources. Providing safe water and basic sanitation to meet the Millennium Development Goals will require substantial economic resources, sustainable technological solutions and courageous political will. A balanced approach to water resources exploitation for development, on the one hand, and controls for the protection of health, on the other, is required if the benefits of both are to be realized without avoidable detrimental effects manifesting themselves. Meeting the millennium development goals for water and sanitation in the next decade will require substantial economic resources, sustainable technological solutions and courageous political will. In addition to providing "improved" water and "basic" sanitation services, we must ensure that these services provide: safe drinking water, adequate quantities of water for health, hygiene, agriculture and development and sustainable sanitation approaches to protect health and the environment.

  18. Disparities in Health Care Quality among Minority Women

    MedlinePlus

    ... 3-EF Go to Online Store Disparities in Health Care Quality Among Minority Women Selected Findings From the ... race and ethnicity are combined. Return to Contents Health Care Delivery and Systems Information about health care delivery ...

  19. Affordability, availability and acceptability barriers to health care for the chronically ill: Longitudinal case studies from South Africa

    PubMed Central

    Goudge, Jane; Gilson, Lucy; Russell, Steven; Gumede, Tebogo; Mills, Anne

    2009-01-01

    Background There is an increasing burden of chronic illness in low and middle income countries, driven by TB/HIV, as well as non-communicable diseases. Few health systems are organized to meet the needs of chronically ill patients, and patients' perspectives on the difficulties of accessing care need to be better understood, particularly in poor resourced settings, to achieve this end. This paper describes the experience of poor households attempting to access chronic care in a rural area of South Africa. Methods A household survey (n = 1446 individuals) was combined with qualitative longitudinal research that followed 30 case study households over 10 months. Illness narratives and diaries provided descriptive textual data of household interactions with the health system. Results In the survey 74% of reported health problems were 'chronic', 48% of which had no treatment action taken in the previous month. Amongst the case study households, of the 34 cases of chronic illness, only 21 (62%) cases had an allopathic diagnosis and only 12 (35%) were receiving regular treatment. Livelihoods exhausted from previous illness and death, low income, and limited social networks, prevented consultation with monthly expenditure for repeated consultations as high as 60% of income. Interrupted drug supplies, insufficient clinical services at the clinic level necessitating referral, and a lack of ambulances further hampered access to care. Poor provider-patient interaction led to inadequate understanding of illness, inappropriate treatment action, 'healer shopping', and at times a break down in cooperation, with the patient 'giving up' on the public health system. However, productive patient-provider interactions not only facilitated appropriate treatment action but enabled patients to justify their need for financial assistance to family and neighbours, and so access care. In addition, patients and their families with understanding of a disease became a community resource drawn on

  20. Health care reform: will quality remodeling affect obstetrician-gynecologists in addition to patients?

    PubMed

    von Gruenigen, Vivian E; Deveny, T Clifford

    2011-05-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is a federal statute that attempts to address many fundamental problems with the current health care system including the uninsured, rising health care costs, and quality care. Quality metrics have been in development for years (by private and governmental sectors), and momentum is growing. The purpose of this commentary is to explore quality changes in the way practicing obstetricians and gynecologists will be held accountable for quality service. Two new options being explored for health care, both focusing on improving quality and physician metrics, include value-based purchasing and accountable-care organizations. Both will likely consist of universal clinical algorithms and cost monitoring as measures. For obstetrics this will probably include physician's rates of cesarean deliveries and elective inductions. For gynecology this may comprise of indications for hysterectomy with documented failed medical management, minor surgical management, or both medical and minor surgical management. It is anticipated patients will no longer be able to request obstetric testing, pregnancy induction, or hysterectomy. It is imperative we, as obstetrician-gynecologists, are involved in health care reform that inevitably involves the care of women. The expectation is that the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) will further develop evidenced-based opinions and guidelines, as medical communities embrace ACOG documents and reference these in hospital policies and peer review. PMID:21508757

  1. How can innovative forms of clinical research contribute to deliver affordable cancer care in an evolving health care environment?

    PubMed

    Burock, Susen; Meunier, Françoise; Lacombe, Denis

    2013-09-01

    As health care costs are constantly rising and governments are reforming their healthcare systems there is an urgent need to reshape the European clinical research landscape. To bridge the translational gap extensive research to understand the mechanism of the agents and of the disease has to be performed and the real benefit of drugs needs to be assessed independently. Furthermore, meaningful data for reimbursement strategies will be a major goal of future clinical trials as well. Therefore, a new integrated model of clinical cancer research is needed to optimise the R&D process. Strategies to ensure that we can gather robust and relevant data about the effectiveness of various healthcare interventions have to be developed to provide optimal patient care within the limits of a healthcare budget. PMID:23777742

  2. [Quality of health care, accreditation, and health technology assessment in Croatia: role of agency for quality and accreditation in health].

    PubMed

    Mittermayer, Renato; Huić, Mirjana; Mestrović, Josipa

    2010-12-01

    Avedis Donabedian defined the quality of care as the kind of care, which is expected to maximize an inclusive measure of patient welfare, after taking into account the balance of expected gains and losses associated with the process of care in all its segments. According to the World Medical Assembly, physicians and health care institutions have an ethical and professional obligation to strive for continuous quality improvement of services and patient safety with the ultimate goal to improve both individual patient outcomes as well as population health. Health technology assessment (HTA) is a multidisciplinary process that summarizes information about the medical, social, economic and ethical issues related to the use of a health technology in a systematic, transparent, unbiased, robust manner, with the aim to formulate safe and effective health policies that are patient focused and seek to achieve the highest value. The Agency for Quality and Accreditation in Health was established in 2007 as a legal, public, independent, nonprofit institution under the Act on Quality of Health Care. The Agency has three departments: Department of Quality and Education, Department of Accreditation, and Department of Development, Research, and Health Technology Assessment. According to the Act, the Agency should provide the procedure of granting, renewal and cancellation of accreditation of healthcare providers; proposing to the Minister, in cooperation with professional associations, the plan and program for healthcare quality assurance, improvement, promotion and monitoring; proposing the healthcare quality standards as well as the accreditation standards to the Minister; keeping a register of accreditations and providing a database related to accreditation, healthcare quality improvement, and education; providing education in the field of healthcare quality assurance, improvement and promotion; providing the HTA procedure and HTA database, supervising the healthcare insurance

  3. College Affordability: Implications for College Opportunity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perna, Laura W.; Li, Chunyan

    2006-01-01

    By examining trends in college affordability, this article explores the extent to which the public perception that college is not affordable is justified. First, the article describes trends in national indicators that contribute to ability to pay, including income growth, health care costs, debt burden, and personal savings rates. Trends in…

  4. Assessing Protection Afforded to the Microbiological Quality of Bedrock Groundwater from the Impacts of Septic Tank Effluent by Irish Glacial Till: A Field Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orr, Alison; McCarthy, Valerie; Meehan, Robert; Flynn, Raymond

    2010-05-01

    The rural population of Ireland relies almost exclusively on on-site treatment systems for disposal of waste water. Septic tank systems, which discharge effluent to ground, constitute the dominant means of waste water disposal. Many of the areas that employ this technology rely on private or small group groundwater supplies, often located in close proximity of septic tanks. Since many of these water supplies provide raw groundwater to consumers, septic tank effluent (STE) can pose a significant hazard to the microbiological quality of drinking water. T-tests (infiltration testing) carried out prior to tank installation aim to assess the capacity of subsoils to receive STE. Tests completed across Ireland indicate that many existing septic tank systems are located in low permeability subsoils. These subsoils are assumed to afford significant protection to the microbiological quality of groundwater in the underlying bedrock units. A two year investigation in the Lough Muckno Catchment in Co. Monaghan, investigating the impact of STE on water quality, involved carrying out T-tests at three sites where effluent discharged to a dense, silty, ‘fractured' glacial till derived from the underlying bedrock and containing clasts of low grade metamorphic Ordovician and Silurian sandstone and shale. Analysis of groundwater samples collected from 28 piezometers straddling the water table within the till, down-gradient of septic tank systems at two sites, permitted faecal indicator microorganism (FIO) levels in near-surface groundwater to be established. Associated hydraulic conductivity tests (slug tests) at all three sites permitted an evaluation of the levels of horizontal hydraulic conductivity heterogeneity present in the till. Slug test results suggest that till median hydraulic conductivities range from 1.1x10-4 cm/s to 1.1x10-5 cm/s, with variability of up to 2 orders of magnitude across each site. On the other hand no significant differences in properties existed

  5. IMPACT OF FLUORIDE ON DENTAL HEALTH QUALITY

    PubMed Central

    Medjedovic, Eida; Medjedovic, Senad; Deljo, Dervis; Sukalo, Aziz

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Fluoride is natural element that strengthens teeth and prevents their decay. Experts believe that the best way to prevent cavities is the use of fluoride from multiple sources. Studies even show that in some cases, fluoride can stop already started damage of the teeth. In children younger than 6 years fluoride is incorporated into the enamel of permanent teeth, making the teeth more resistant to the action of bacterial and acids in food. Goal: The aim of this study is to determine the effects of improving the health status of teeth after six months treatment with the use of topical fluoridation 0.5% NaF, and the level and quality of the impact of treatment with chemical 0.5% NaF on the dental health of children at age from 8 to 15 years, in relation to gender and chronological age. This study included school children aged 8 to 15 years who visited health and dental services dependent in Mostar. Results: It is obvious that after the implementation of treatment with 5% NaF by the method of topical fluoridation, health status of subjects from the experimental group significantly improved, so that at the final review 89.71% or 61 subjects of the experimental group had healthy (cured teeth), tooth with dental caries only 5.88% or 4 respondents tooth with dental caries and filling 4.41% or 3 respondents, extracted baby tooth 14.71% or 10 respondents, while for 13.24% of respondents was identified state with still unerupted teeth. Our findings are indirectly confirmed that the six-month treatment of fluoridation with 5% NaF, contributed to statistically significant improvement in overall oral health of the experimental group compared to the control group which was not treated by any dental treatment. Conclusion: It can be concluded that there is a statistically significant difference in the evaluated parameters of oral health of children in the control group compared to the studied parameters of oral health the experimental group of children at the final

  6. Agreement and disagreement on health care quality concepts among academic health professionals: the Saudi case.

    PubMed

    Mahrous, Mohamed Saad

    2014-01-01

    A systematic and rigorous implementation of quality improvement processes is likely to improve the well-being of staff members and heighten their job satisfaction. Assessing professionals' perceptions of health care quality should lead to the betterment of health care services. In Saudi Arabia, no previous studies examine how university health professionals view health care quality concepts. A cross-sectional analytical study employing a self-administered questionnaire with 43 statements assessing quality perceptions of academic health care professionals was used. Despite the agreement of health professionals on numerous quality concepts addressed in this study, there was insufficient agreement on 10 core quality concepts, 3 of which were the following: "quality focuses on customers" (50%), "quality is tangible and therefore measurable" (29.3%), and "quality is data-driven" (62%). Hence, providing health professionals with relevant training likely will generate a better understanding of quality concepts and optimize their performance. PMID:23897553

  7. Sustainable development and quality health care.

    PubMed

    1994-01-01

    On the occasion of Development Week in Canada, Dr. Remi Sogunro spoke in February, 1994, about the many achievements of quality primary health care and PLAN's strategy to achieve sustainability. In one generation, under-5 mortality has been cut by a third. Deaths from measles has been reduced from 2.5 million to 1 million a year. Skeletal deformities from polio also have been reduced from 1/2 million to less than 140,000. Despite all this, there is much more to be attained. 35,000 children under 5 die from preventable diseases every day in developing countries. The health community is working hard to address these silent emergencies. PLAN International's primary health care program targets the poor and undeserved populations where diseases are prevalent. The main focus of PLAN's programs are mothers and children who are most vulnerable to disease. Key interventions that PLAN gives priority to are childhood and maternal immunization programs, including pre- and post-natal care for mothers. Other interventions under PLAN's comprehensive primary health care program include: control of diarrheal diseases and acute respiratory infections, growth monitoring, nutrition and control of STDs and HIV/AIDS infection, water and sanitation, family planning information and educational services, and rehabilitation of the handicapped. "Go in search of people, begin with what they know, build on what they have," goes a Chinese proverb. This also summarizes PLAN's guiding principle for achieving sustainable development: the importance of investing in people. PLAN's programs in the field build partnerships and empower communities. PLAN's emphasis on institution-building and capacity-building with local institutions is an important part of organizational strategy to ensure sustained development. PMID:12179549

  8. Theory and practice for measuring health care quality

    PubMed Central

    Berwick, Donald M.; Knapp, Marian Gilbert

    1987-01-01

    As competition, cost control, and new modes of delivery emerge in health care, there is a need to reexamine both the traditional definitions of health care quality and the methods by which it is measured. Industries other than health care have much to teach regarding the methods for obtaining, analyzing, and displaying data; techniques for problem identification, problem solving, and reassessment; and ideas about organizational factors that produce a high quality product or service. The Quality-of-Care Measurement Department at the Harvard Community Health Plan has built a program that draws from a distinguished health care quality assurance tradition and incorporates techniques that have been successful in other industries. PMID:10312319

  9. Health, Health-Related Quality of Life, and Quality of Life: What is the Difference?

    PubMed

    Karimi, Milad; Brazier, John

    2016-07-01

    The terms health, health-related quality of life (HRQoL), and quality of life (QoL) are used interchangeably. Given that these are three key terms in the literature, their appropriate and clear use is important. This paper reviews the history and definitions of the terms and considers how they have been used. It is argued that the definitions of HRQoL in the literature are problematic because some definitions fail to distinguish between HRQoL and health or between HRQoL and QoL. Many so-called HRQoL questionnaires actually measure self-perceived health status and the use of the phrase QoL is unjustified. It is concluded that the concept of HRQoL as used now is confusing. A potential solution is to define HRQoL as the way health is empirically estimated to affect QoL or use the term to only signify the utility associated with a health state. PMID:26892973

  10. Evaluating health care quality: the moderating role of outcomes.

    PubMed

    Lytle, R S; Mokwa, M P

    1992-03-01

    An integrative model of health care quality is presented. "Health care quality" is defined as provider conformance to patient requirements at three benefit levels: core, intangible, and tangible. The model is operationalized and tested in a clinical setting, a large center for fertility studies with more than 5000 patients. Health care "process variables" such as physician and patient interactions were not as important in patients' evaluations of health care quality when successful outcomes occurred (pregnancy). However, when patients experienced unsuccessful outcomes (no pregnancy), health care "process variables" were important and had a significant influence on patient perceptions of health care quality. Hence, service outcomes can significantly affect the measurement and interpretation of health care quality. Implications for health care management and research are discussed. PMID:10116754

  11. Quality of data in multiethnic health surveys.

    PubMed Central

    Pasick, R. J.; Stewart, S. L.; Bird, J. A.; D'Onofrio, C. N.

    2001-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: There has been insufficient research on the influence of ethno-cultural and language differences in public health surveys. Using data from three independent studies, the authors examine methods to assess data quality and to identify causes of problematic survey questions. METHODS: Qualitative and quantitative methods were used in this exploratory study, including secondary analyses of data from three baseline surveys (conducted in English, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, and Vietnamese). Collection of additional data included interviews with investigators and interviewers; observations of item development; focus groups; think-aloud interviews; a test-retest assessment survey; and a pilot test of alternatively worded questions. RESULTS: The authors identify underlying causes for the 12 most problematic variables in three multiethnic surveys and describe them in terms of ethnic differences in reliability, validity, and cognitive processes (interpretation, memory retrieval, judgment formation, and response editing), and differences with regard to cultural appropriateness and translation problems. CONCLUSIONS: Multiple complex elements affect measurement in a multiethnic survey, many of which are neither readily observed nor understood through standard tests of data quality. Multiethnic survey questions are best evaluated using a variety of quantitative and qualitative methods that reveal different types and causes of problems. PMID:11889288

  12. Indoor air quality and health in schools*

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Ana Maria da Conceição; Cardoso, Massano

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To determine whether indoor air quality in schools is associated with the prevalence of allergic and respiratory diseases in children. Methods: We evaluated 1,019 students at 51 elementary schools in the city of Coimbra, Portugal. We applied a questionnaire that included questions regarding the demographic, social, and behavioral characteristics of students, as well as the presence of smoking in the family. We also evaluated the indoor air quality in the schools. Results: In the indoor air of the schools evaluated, we identified mean concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) above the maximum reference value, especially during the fall and winter. The CO2 concentration was sometimes as high as 1,942 ppm, implying a considerable health risk for the children. The most prevalent symptoms and respiratory diseases identified in the children were sneezing, rales, wheezing, rhinitis, and asthma. Other signs and symptoms, such as poor concentration, cough, headache, and irritation of mucous membranes, were identified. Lack of concentration was associated with CO2 concentrations above the maximum recommended level in indoor air (p = 0.002). There were no other significant associations. Conclusions: Most of the schools evaluated presented with reasonable air quality and thermal comfort. However, the concentrations of various pollutants, especially CO2, suggest the need for corrective interventions, such as reducing air pollutant sources and improving ventilation. There was a statistically significant association between lack of concentration in the children and exposure to high levels of CO2. The overall low level of pollution in the city of Coimbra might explain the lack of other significant associations. PMID:25029649

  13. Air quality standards must protect public health

    SciTech Connect

    Norman Edelman

    2006-06-15

    Leading medical and public health organizations are deeply concerned about the proposed revisions to the National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) that the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced in December 2005. Led by the American Lung Association (ALA), these groups are fighting to force EPA to finalize stricter standards for fine and coarse particles when the final decision is announced in September 2006. The ALA disagrees strongly with the proposal to exempt coarse particles from agriculture and mining sources, and to exclude communities with populations fewer than 100,000 from protection and monitoring requirements. ALA urges EPA to set the following health-based NAAQS for PM: Annual average PM2.5 standard of 12 {mu}mg/m{sup 3}; 24 hour average PM2.5 standard of 25 {mu}mg.m{sup 3} (99th percentile); 24-hour average PM10-2.5 standard of 25-30 {mu}g/m{sup 3} (99th percentile), applied equally to all areas of the country and to all types of particles. 72 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab.

  14. Understanding the relationships between air quality and human health

    SciTech Connect

    S.T. Rao

    2006-09-15

    Although there has been substantial progress in improving ambient air quality in the United States, atmospheric concentrations of ozone and fine particulate matter (PM2.5) continue to exceed the National Ambient Air Quality Standards in many locations. Consequently, a large portion of the U.S. population continues to be exposed to unhealthful levels of ozone and fine particles. This issue of EM, entitled 'Understanding the relationships between air quality and human health' presents a series of articles that focus on the relationships between air quality and human health - what we know so far and the challenges that remain. Their titles are: Understanding the effects of air pollution on human health; Assessing population exposures in studies of human health effects of PM2.5; Establishing a national environmental public health tracking network; Linking air quality and exposure models; and On alert: air quality forecasting and health advisory warnings.

  15. Attributes of Quality in Audiovisual Materials for Health Professionals.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Suter, Emanuel; Waddell, Wendy H.

    1981-01-01

    Defines attributes of quality in content, instructional design, technical production, and packaging of audiovisual materials used in the education of health professionals. Seven references are listed. (FM)

  16. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act - The Role of the School Nurse: Position Statement.

    PubMed

    2015-07-01

    It is the position of the National Association of School Nurses that the registered professional school nurse (hereinafter referred to as the school nurse) serves a vital role in the delivery of health care to our nation’s students within the health care system reshaped by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, commonly known as the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This law presents an opportunity to transform the health care system through three primary goals: expanding access, improving quality, and reducing cost (U.S. Government Printing Office, 2010). School nurses stand at the forefront of this system change and continue to provide evidence-based, quality interventions and preventive care that, according to recent studies, actually save health care dollars (Wang et al., 2014). NASN supports the concept that school nursing services receive the same financial parity as other health care providers to improve overall health outcomes, including insurance reimbursement for services provided to students. PMID:25926418

  17. Who Can Afford Health Care? Evaluating the Socio-Economic Conditions and the Ability to Contribute to Health Care in a Post-Conflict Area in DR Congo

    PubMed Central

    Gerstl, Sibylle; Sauter, Justin; Kasanda, Joseph; Kinzelbach, Alfred

    2013-01-01

    Introduction The Democratic Republic of the Congo is today one of the poorest countries in the world; the health status of the population ranks among the worst in Sub-Saharan Africa. Public health services charge user fees and drug prices. Since 2008, north-eastern Congo is facing a guerrilla war. Malteser International is assisting with free health care for internally displaced persons as well as the general population. Before the incursion the health system was based on user fees. The aim of this study was to determine the socio-economic conditions of the population and to assess their ability to contribute to health care. Methodology Heads of 552 randomly selected households in 23 clusters in two health zones were interviewed using a standardised questionnaire. Findings The demographic description and socio-economic conditions of the study population were homogenous. Major source of income was agriculture (57%); 47% of the households earned less than US$ 5.5/week. Ninety-two percent of the interviewed households estimated that they would be able to contribute to consultation fees (maximum amount of US$ 0.27) and 79% to the drug prices (maximum amount of US$ 1.10). Six percent opted for free consultations and 19% for free drugs. Conclusions Living conditions were very basic; the estimated income of the study population was low. Almost half of the population perceived their current living situation as fairly good/good. More than 90% of the study population estimated to be able to contribute to consultation fees and 80% to drug prices. As a result Malteser International suggested introducing flat-rates for health care services. Once the project ends, the population will have to pay again for their health service. One solution would be the introduction of a health care financing system with the goal to reach universal coverage to health care. PMID:24204819

  18. Electronic Health Records and Quality of Care

    PubMed Central

    Yanamadala, Swati; Morrison, Doug; Curtin, Catherine; McDonald, Kathryn; Hernandez-Boussard, Tina

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Electronic health records (EHRs) were implemented to improve quality of care and patient outcomes. This study assessed the relationship between EHR-adoption and patient outcomes. We performed an observational study using State Inpatient Databases linked to American Hospital Association survey, 2011. Surgical and medical patients from 6 large, diverse states were included. We performed univariate analyses and developed hierarchical regression models relating level of EHR utilization and mortality, readmission rates, and complications. We evaluated the effect of EHR adoption on outcomes in a difference-in-differences analysis, 2008 to 2011. Medical and surgical patients sought care at hospitals reporting no EHR (3.5%), partial EHR (55.2%), and full EHR systems (41.3%). In univariate analyses, patients at hospitals with full EHR had the lowest rates of inpatient mortality, readmissions, and Patient Safety Indicators followed by patients at hospitals with partial EHR and then patients at hospitals with no EHR (P < 0.05). However, these associations were not robust when accounting for other patient and hospital factors, and adoption of an EHR system was not associated with improved patient outcomes (P > 0.05). These results indicate that patients receiving medical and surgical care at hospitals with no EHR system have similar outcomes compared to patients seeking care at hospitals with a full EHR system, after controlling for important confounders. To date, we have not yet seen the promised benefits of EHR systems on patient outcomes in the inpatient setting. EHRs may play a smaller role than expected in patient outcomes and overall quality of care. PMID:27175631

  19. Creating Quality Improvement Culture in Public Health Agencies

    PubMed Central

    Mahanna, Elizabeth; Joly, Brenda; Zelek, Michael; Riley, William; Verma, Pooja; Fisher, Jessica Solomon

    2014-01-01

    Objectives. We conducted case studies of 10 agencies that participated in early quality improvement efforts. Methods. The agencies participated in a project conducted by the National Association of County and City Health Officials (2007–2008). Case study participants included health directors and quality improvement team leaders and members. We implemented multiple qualitative analysis processes, including cross-case analysis and logic modeling. We categorized agencies according to the extent to which they had developed a quality improvement culture. Results. Agencies were conducting informal quality improvement projects (n = 4), conducting formal quality improvement projects (n = 3), or creating a quality improvement culture (n = 4). Agencies conducting formal quality improvement and creating a quality improvement culture had leadership support for quality improvement, participated in national quality improvement initiatives, had a greater number of staff trained in quality improvement and quality improvement teams that met regularly with decision-making authority. Agencies conducting informal quality improvement were likely to report that accreditation is the major driver for quality improvement work. Agencies creating a quality improvement culture were more likely to have a history of evidence-based decision-making and use quality improvement to address emerging issues. Conclusions. Our findings support previous research and add the roles of national public health accreditation and emerging issues as factors in agencies’ ability to create and sustain a quality improvement culture. PMID:24228680

  20. [Management problems of improving the quality and efficiency of primary health care system of Georgia].

    PubMed

    Dzhakeli, I V; Edzhibadze, O I; Gerzmava, O Kh

    2009-01-01

    Improving the quality and efficiency of primary health care system is a key challenge. In this regard, problems that have accumulated in the system over the past decade - a weak material base of outpatient-polyclinic institutions, especially in rural areas; a surplus of medical personnel; lack of control by local, regional and central authorities--still remain as serious obstacle. The issue of financing the provided health services, is also particularly important, given the fact that a significant portion of the cost of medical services is covered by the patient directly. And as a consequence, the low level of applications for outpatient-polyclinic assistance due to declining affordability of medical services. In connection with the foregoing, the authors of the paper raise the question of implementing strict, multi-component system of quality control of medical care for patients. In particular, they propose: to base modern organization works on improving the quality of primary health care system on the principles of general management theory; Modern management of service quality should be clearly oriented towards the needs of the population in health care, its structure and dynamics; accessibility, incentives, determined by economic and technological competition characteristic to the market; Modern quality management, regardless of ownership and scale of outpatient-polyclinic establishment should optimally combine the actions, methods and tools that provide, on the one hand--the organization of diagnostic and therapeutic-prophylactic processes meeting the needs of the people, and on the other--the introduction of new methods and means to ensure the modern level of medical care; Schematic diagram of quality control mechanism organically interacts with the market research and includes a block of policy development in terms of quality. PMID:19644201

  1. [Quality planning of Family Health Units using Quality Function Deployment (QFD)].

    PubMed

    Volpato, Luciana Fernandes; Meneghim, Marcelo de Castro; Pereira, Antonio Carlos; Ambrosano, Gláucia Maria Bovi

    2010-08-01

    Quality is an indispensible requirement in the health field, and its pursuit is necessary in order to meet demands by a population that is aware of its rights, as part of the essence of good work relations, and to decrease technological costs. Quality thus involves all parties to the process (users and professionals), and is no longer merely an attribute of the health service. This study aimed to verify the possibility of quality planning in the Family Health Units, using Quality Function Deployment (QFD). QFD plans quality according to user satisfaction, involving staff professionals and identifying new approaches to improve work processes. Development of the array, called the House of Quality, is this method's most important characteristics. The results show a similarity between the quality demanded by users and the quality planned by professionals. The current study showed that QFD is an efficient tool for quality planning in public health services. PMID:21229215

  2. Can China afford rapid aging?

    PubMed

    Jiang, Quanbao; Yang, Shucai; Sánchez-Barricarte, Jesús J

    2016-01-01

    China's rapid aging has caused widespread concern, but it seems that the situations and consequences of rapid aging are not adequately acknowledged. This study analyzed the problem of ageing in China from the aspects of elderly people's health status, income source, daily care, suicide, the weak social security system in terms of pension, health expenses, and long-term care costs as well as incoming accelerating ageing process in China. All these factors indicate that it is difficult for China to afford the issue of a rapidly aging population. PMID:27478724

  3. Quality improvement and accountability in the Danish health care system.

    PubMed

    Mainz, Jan; Kristensen, Solvejg; Bartels, Paul

    2015-12-01

    Denmark has unique opportunities for quality measurement and benchmarking since Denmark has well-developed health registries and unique patient identifier that allow all registries to include patient-level data and combine data into sophisticated quality performance monitoring. Over decades, Denmark has developed and implemented national quality and patient safety initiatives in the healthcare system in terms of national clinical guidelines, performance and outcome measurement integrated in clinical databases for important diseases and clinical conditions, measurement of patient experiences, reporting of adverse events, national handling of patient complaints, national accreditation and public disclosure of all data on the quality of care. Over the years, Denmark has worked up a progressive and transparent just culture in quality management; the different actors at the different levels of the healthcare system are mutually attentive and responsive in a coordinated effort for quality of the healthcare services. At national, regional, local and hospital level, it is mandatory to participate in the quality initiatives and to use data and results for quality management, quality improvement, transparency in health care and accountability. To further develop the Danish governance model, it is important to expand the model to the primary care sector. Furthermore, a national quality health programme 2015-18 recently launched by the government supports a new development in health care focusing upon delivering high-quality health care-high quality is defined by results of value to the patients. PMID:26443814

  4. Health-weighted Composite Quality Metrics Offer Promise to Improve Health Outcomes in a Learning Health System.

    PubMed

    Braithwaite, Scott; Stine, Nicholas

    2013-01-01

    Health system leaders sometimes adopt quality metrics without robust supporting evidence of improvements in quality and/or quantity of life, which may impair rather than facilitate improved health outcomes. In brief, there is now no easy way to measure how much "health" is conferred by a health system. However, we argue that this goal is achievable. Health-weighted composite quality metrics have the potential to measure "health" by synthesizing individual evidence-based quality metrics into a summary measure, utilizing relative weightings that reflect the relative amount of health benefit conferred by each constituent quality metric. Previously, it has been challenging to create health-weighted composite quality metrics because of methodological and data limitations. However, advances in health information technology and mathematical modeling of disease progression promise to help mitigate these challenges by making patient-level data (eg, from the electronic health record and mobile health (mHealth) more accessible and more actionable for use. Accordingly, it may now be possible to use health information technology to calculate and track a health-weighted composite quality metric for each patient that reflects the health benefit conferred to that patient by the health system. These health-weighted composite quality metrics can be employed for a multitude of important aims that improve health outcomes, including quality evaluation, population health maximization, health disparity attenuation, panel management, resource allocation, and personalization of care. We describe the necessary attributes, the possible uses, and the likely limitations and challenges of health-weighted composite quality metrics using patient-level health data. PMID:25848572

  5. The Equity and Quality (EQual) Health-Care Project: A Connecticut Health Foundation initiative with Qualidigm.

    PubMed

    Van Hoof, Thomas J; Mahier, Stephen E; Barr, Judith K; Krause, Elizabeth M S; Kelvey-Albert, Michele; Curry, Maureen; Meehan, Thomas P

    2010-05-01

    In response to the growing incidence and prevalence of diabetes, quality and disparity of care concerns, and the increasing diversity of the US and Connecticut's populations, the Connecticut Health Foundation funded Qualidigm to implement the Equity and Quality (EQual) Health-Care Project. Now in its second full year, the EQualHealth-CareProject is helping eight primary-care practices in Connecticut improve the equity and quality of diabetes care through technology, education, and quality improvement. PMID:20509420

  6. Legal issues concerning electronic health information: privacy, quality, and liability.

    PubMed

    Hodge, J G; Gostin, L O; Jacobson, P D

    1999-10-20

    Personally identifiable health information about individuals and general medical information is increasingly available in electronic form in health databases and through online networks. The proliferation of electronic data within the modern health information infrastructure presents significant benefits for medical providers and patients, including enhanced patient autonomy, improved clinical treatment, advances in health research and public health surveillance, and modern security techniques. However, it also presents new legal challenges in 3 interconnected areas: privacy of identifiable health information, reliability and quality of health data, and tortbased liability. Protecting health information privacy (by giving individuals control over health data without severely restricting warranted communal uses) directly improves the quality and reliability of health data (by encouraging individual uses of health services and communal uses of data), which diminishes tort-based liabilities (by reducing instances of medical malpractice or privacy invasions through improvements in the delivery of health care services resulting in part from better quality and reliability of clinical and research data). Following an analysis of the interconnectivity of these 3 areas and discussing existing and proposed health information privacy laws, recommendations for legal reform concerning health information privacy are presented. These include (1) recognizing identifiable health information as highly sensitive, (2) providing privacy safeguards based on fair information practices, (3) empowering patients with information and rights to consent to disclosure (4) limiting disclosures of health data absent consent, (5) incorporating industry-wide security protections, (6) establishing a national data protection authority, and (7) providing a national minimal level of privacy protections. PMID:10535438

  7. INTEGRATING AIR QUALITY DATA TO INFORM HUMAN HEALTH DECISIONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The August 1-2, 2005 EPA-NIEHS workshop is addressing the linkages between air quality and human health. My presentation will discuss the strengths and limitations of various databases for relating air quality to health impacts. Specifically, the need for fusing ground-based, s...

  8. UNDERSTANDING THE RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN AIR QUALITY AND HUMAN HEALTH

    EPA Science Inventory

    This issue of EM presents a series of articles that focus on air quality and human health--what we know so far and the challenges that remain. The first article provides an overview of the problem at hand and approaches to properly address air quality and human health issues. Fo...

  9. Measuring health care access and quality to improve health in populations.

    PubMed

    Kottke, Thomas E; Isham, George J

    2010-07-01

    Poor health status, rapidly escalating health care costs, and seemingly little association between investments in health care and health outcomes have prompted a call for a "pay-for-performance" system to improve population health. We suggest that both health plans and clinical service providers measure and report the rates of 5 behaviors: 1) smoking, 2) physical activity, 3) excessive drinking, 4) nutrition, and 5) condom use by sexually active youth. Because preventive services can improve population health, we suggest that health plans and clinical service providers report delivery rates of preventive services. We also suggest that an independent organization report 8 county-level indicators of health care performance: 1) health care expenditures, 2) insurance coverage, 3) rates of unmet medical, dental, and prescription drug needs, 4) preventive services delivery rates, 5) childhood vaccination rates, 6) rates of preventable hospitalizations, 7) an index of affordability, and 8) disparities in access to health care associated with race and income. To support healthy behaviors, access to work site wellness and health promotion programs should be measured. To promote coordinated care, an indicator should be developed for whether a clinical service provider is a member of an accountable care organization. To encourage clinical service providers and health plans to address the social determinants of health, organizational participation in community-benefit initiatives that address the leading social determinants of health should be assessed. PMID:20550831

  10. Obstacles to employers' pursuit of health care quality.

    PubMed

    Hargraves, J Lee; Trude, Sally

    2002-01-01

    Large employers' roles in improving health care quality are shifting away from value-based purchasing toward direct efforts to improve health care delivery within local markets. Although most large employers adopted the tools required for value-based purchasing, inadequate information on quality has frustrated employers and limited their ability to make choices based on quality. More recent quality initiatives aimed at directly improving local health delivery systems may be limited to specific markets where the largest employers can exert substantial influence. PMID:12224883

  11. The legal framework for health care quality assurance in Germany.

    PubMed

    Sauerland, Dirk

    2009-01-01

    Like most industrialized countries, Germany's health care system is facing two major challenges. The first is to find a sustainable financing system for increasing health care expenditures. The second is to ensure - and improve - the quality of care provided. This article describes the status quo in quality assurance in Germany and analyses the changes introduced into the SHI (Statutory Health Insurance) system with the Modernization Act of 2004. First, a theoretical framework for quality assurance that is consistent with the logic of the German social market economy is outlined. The analysis then describes new actors and their duties in the field of quality assurance, highlighting improvements in regulation and the regulatory instruments applied. Although the strategy for quality assurance is still dominated by regulation and corporatist bodies, the latest reform acts of 2004 and 2007 focus on more and better information about the quality of services provided - an important prerequisite for more competitive elements in the German health care system. PMID:19099618

  12. 75 FR 82397 - Medicaid Program: Initial Core Set of Health Quality Measures for Medicaid-Eligible Adults

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-12-30

    ... adults, as required by section 2701 of the Affordable Care Act, for voluntary use by State programs administered under title XIX of the Social Security Act (the Act), health insurance issuers and managed care... signed into law the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Affordable Care Act) (Pub. L. 111-...

  13. Assuring Quality Health Care in the Emergency Department

    PubMed Central

    Letvak, Susan; Rhew, Denise

    2015-01-01

    The provision of quality healthcare is an international mandate. The provision of quality healthcare for mental health patients poses unique challenges. Nowhere is this challenge greater than in the emergency department. The purpose of this manuscript is to describe evidence-based initiatives for improving the quality of care of mental health patients in the emergency department. Specifically, the use of telepsychiatry and reducing provider biases will be presented.

  14. Financial Health of Child Care Facilities Affects Quality of Care.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brower, Mary R.; Sull, Theresa M.

    2003-01-01

    Contends that child care facility owners, boards of directors, staff, and parents need to focus on financial management, as poor financial health compromises the quality of care for children. Specifically addresses the issues of: (1) concern for providing high quality child care; (2) the connection between quality and money; and (3) strengthening…

  15. Health Curriculum and School Quality: International Perspectives.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hawes, Hugh

    2003-01-01

    Looks at health education content in primary schools in Africa and India. Argues that health education is vital because it links home with school. Notes that curriculum planners have difficulty planning and delivering health education because they cannot work across the curriculum and rely on textbooks and examinations. (CAJ)

  16. Health-Related Quality of Life in HIV Disease.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hays, Ron D.; And Others

    1995-01-01

    The structure of health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in persons with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) was studied in 205 symptomatic adults. Confirmatory factor analysis supported a two-factor model of HRQOL, with physical and mental health dimensions. Correlations of HRQOL with other aspects of health and support are discussed. (SLD)

  17. Quality assurance for health and environmental chemistry: 1990

    SciTech Connect

    Gautier, M.A.; Gladney, E.S.; Koski, N.L.; Jones, E.A.; O'Malley, B.T.

    1991-10-01

    This report documents the continuing quality assurance efforts of the Health and Environmental Chemistry Group (HSE-9) at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. The philosophy, methodology, computing resources, and laboratory information management system used by the quality assurance program to encompass the diversity of analytical chemistry practiced in the group are described. Included in the report are all quality assurance reference materials used, along with their certified or consensus concentrations, and all analytical chemistry quality assurance measurements made by HSE-9 during 1990.

  18. Quality of care and racial health disparities: a strategic overview.

    PubMed

    Chassin, Mark R; Anderson, Rebecca M

    2008-01-01

    Substantial racial and ethnic disparities in health and health care exist in the United States. The Department of Health Policy at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine has developed a strategy for reducing those disparities that builds upon its quality improvement experience. This article discusses the utility of applying quality improvement principles to the development of interventions to eliminate underuse of effective treatments and reduce the disparities that may arise from this quality problem. We present a conceptual model of racial disparities in health and our underuse hypothesis. Parallels between our disparities research strategy and six sigma quality improvement methods are described. Finally, the article provides an example of how we have been able to successfully implement proven-effective health improvement programs in the Harlem community even after grant funding has ended. PMID:18306237

  19. Issues in Measuring and Improving Health Care Quality

    PubMed Central

    Friedman, Maria A.

    1995-01-01

    This issue of the Health Care Financing Review focuses on issues and advances in measuring and improving the quality of care, particularly for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries. Discussions of quality-related topics are especially timely, given the growing and widespread interest in improving quality in the organization, financing, and delivery of health care services. This article has several purposes. The first is to provide a brief description of some of the causes underlying the growth of the health care quality movement; the second is to provide a contextual framework for discussion of some of the overarching themes that emerge in this issue. These themes include examining conceptual issues, developing quality measures for specific sites and populations, and creating or adapting data sets for quality-measurement purposes. PMID:10151882

  20. Is health care ready for Six Sigma quality?

    PubMed

    Chassin, M R

    1998-01-01

    Serious, widespread problems exist in the quality of U.S. health care: too many patients are exposed to the risks of unnecessary services; opportunities to use effective care are missed; and preventable errors lead to injuries. Advanced practitioners of industrial quality management, like Motorola and General Electric, have committed themselves to reducing the frequency of defects in their business processes to fewer than 3.4 per million, a strategy known as Six Sigma Quality. In health care, quality problems frequently occur at rates of 20 to 50 percent, or 200,000 to 500,000 per million. In order to approach Six Sigma levels of quality, the health care sector must address the underlying causes of error and make important changes: adopting new educational models; devising strategies to increase consumer awareness; and encouraging public and private investment in quality improvement. PMID:9879303

  1. Affordable Vehicle Avionics Overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cockrell, James J.

    2015-01-01

    Public and private launch vehicle developers are reducing the cost of propulsion for small commercial launchers, but conventional high-performance, high-reliability avionics remain the disproportionately high cost driver for launch. AVA technology performs as well or better than conventional launch vehicle avionics, but with a fraction of the recurring costs. AVA enables small launch providers to offer affordable rides to LEO to nano-satellites as primary payloads meaning, small payloads can afford to specify their own launch and orbit parameters

  2. Affordable Vehicle Avionics Overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cockrell, James J.

    2015-01-01

    Public and private launch vehicle developers are reducing the cost of propulsion for small commercial launchers, but conventional high-performance, high-reliability avionics remain the disproportionately high cost driver for launch. AVA technology performs as well or better than conventional launch vehicle avionics, but with a fraction of the recurring costs. AVA enables small launch providers to offer affordable rides to LEO to nano-satellites as primary payloads meaning, small payloads can afford to specify their own launch and orbit parameters.

  3. Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Rak, Sofija; Coffin, Janis

    2013-01-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA), although a subject of much debate in the Unites States, was enacted on March 23, 2010, and upheld by the Supreme Court on June 28, 2012. This act advocates that "healthcare is a right, not a privilege." The main goals of PPACA are to minimize the number of uninsured Americans and make healthcare available to everyone at an affordable price. The Congressional Budget Office has determined that 94% of Americans will have healthcare coverage while staying under the $900 billion limit that President Barack Obama established by bending the healthcare cost curve and reducing the deficit over the next 10 years. PMID:23767130

  4. Health quality initiative promoted by large employers.

    PubMed

    Fine, Allan

    2004-01-01

    The goal of Care Focused Purchasing is to create a scorecard of providers and physicians enabling health care consumers to make better decisions. The employer group is united around the belief that current health plan designs and cost-sharing strategies are short-sighted. They are looking for additional companies to join this organization. PMID:15702565

  5. A model of continuous quality improvement for health service organisations.

    PubMed

    Thornber, M

    1992-01-01

    Continuous Quality Improvement (or Total Quality Management) is an approach to management originally used in manufacturing and now being applied in the health services. This article describes a model of Continuous Quality Improvement which has been used in NSW public and private hospitals. The model consists of Ten Key Elements. The first driving force of this model is 'defining quality in terms of customer expectations' of quality. The second driving force emphasises that 'quality improvement is a leadership issue'. Leaders are required to: coordinate staff participation in work process analysis; train staff in the customer service orientation; lead effective meetings and negotiate with both internal and external service partners. Increased staff motivation, quality improvement and reduction in running costs are seen to be the benefits of CQI for health service organisations. PMID:10117452

  6. Higher Education State Funding Trends and Policies on Affordability. Report to the Chairman, Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, United States Senate. GAO-15-151

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Emrey-Arras, Melissa

    2014-01-01

    There is widespread concern that the rising costs of higher education are making college unaffordable for many students and their families. Federal and state support is central to promoting college affordability; however, persistent state budget constraints have limited funding for public colleges. GAO was asked to study state policies affecting…

  7. Remote Sensing, Air Quality, and Public Health

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Quattrochi, Dale A.; Rickman, Douglas; Mohammad, Al-Hamdan; Crosson, William; Estes, Maurice, Jr.; Limaye, Ashutosh; Qualters, Judith

    2008-01-01

    HELIX-Atlanta was developed to support current and future state and local EPHT programs to implement data linking demonstratio'n projects which could be part of the EPHT Network. HELIX-Atlanta is a pilot linking project in Atlanta for CDC to learn about the challenges the states will encounter. NASA/MSFC and the CDC are partners in linking environmental and health data to enhance public health surveillance. The use of NASA technology creates value - added geospatial products from existing environmental data sources to facilitate public health linkages. Proving the feasibility of the approach is the main objective

  8. Quality of Life, Health Status, and Health Service Utilization Related to a New Measure of Health Literacy FLIGHT/VIDAS

    PubMed Central

    Ownby, Raymond L; Acevedo, Amarilis; Jacobs, Robin J.; Caballero, Joshua; Waldrop-Valverde, Drenna

    2014-01-01

    Objective Researchers have identified significant limitations in some currently-used measures of health literacy. The purpose of this paper is to present data on the relation of health-related quality of life, health status, and health service utilization to performance on a new measure of health literacy in a nonpatient population. Methods The new measure was administered to 475 English- and Spanish-speaking community-dwelling volunteers along with existing measures of health literacy and assessments of health-related quality of life, health status, and healthcare service utilization. Relations among measures were assessed via correlations and health status and utilization was tested across levels of health literacy using ANCOVA models. Results The new health literacy measure is significantly related to existing measures of health literacy as well as to participants’ health-related quality of life. Persons with lower levels of health literacy reported more health conditions, more frequent physical symptoms, and greater healthcare service utilization. Conclusion The new measure of health literacy is valid and shows relations to measures of conceptually-related constructs such as quality of life and health behaviors. Practice Implications: FLIGHT/VIDAS may be useful to researchers and clinicians interested in a computer administered and scored measure of health literacy. PMID:24856447

  9. Health, Quality of Care and Quality of Life: A Case of Frail Older Adults

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hsieh, Chang-Ming

    2009-01-01

    This study explores the relationship between health, quality of care of geriatric case management and quality of life for the purpose of furthering the understanding of the relationship between quality of life and geriatric case management. Using survey data from a group of frail older adults, this study assesses the relative merit of two…

  10. Opportunities for oncology in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Patel, Kavita K; Tran, Lisa

    2013-01-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) contains within it three significant legislative constructs: to enhance access to health care, improve quality, and decrease cost. Also known as the Triple Aim, these three simple, yet monumental, goals have been the object of actions to date as well as future implementation efforts. This article will identify sections of the legislation that would directly provide areas of opportunity to improve health and achieve the triple aim for the oncology profession. PMID:23714567

  11. ASSESSING BIOACCUMULATION FOR DERIVING NATIONAL HUMAN HEALTH WATER QUALITY CRITERIA

    EPA Science Inventory

    The United States Environmental Protection Agency is revising its methodology for deriving national ambient water quality criteria (AWQC) to protect human health. A component of this guidance involves assessing the potential for chemical bioaccumulation in commonly consumed fish ...

  12. Can I afford free treatment?: Perceived consequences of health care provider choices among people with tuberculosis in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

    PubMed

    Lönnroth, K; Tran, T U; Thuong, L M; Quy, H T; Diwan, V

    2001-03-01

    Vietnam has a well-organised National TB Control Programme (NTP) with outstanding treatment results. Excellent prospect of cure is provided free of charge. Still, some people prefer to pay for their TB treatment themselves in private clinics. This is a potential threat to TB control since no notification of cases treated in the private sector occurs, and there is no control of the effectiveness of treatment provided in private clinics. Using a qualitative approach within a grounded theory framework, this study explores health-seeking behaviour among people with TB, applying a specific focus on reasons for choices of private versus pubic health care providers. The study identifies a number of characteristics of private TB care, which both seem attractive to patients and at the same time contrast sharply with the structure of the NTP strategy. These include flexible diagnostic procedures, no administrative procedures to establish eligibility for treatment, flexible choices of drug regimens, non-supervised treatment (no DOT), no tracing of defaulters in the household, no official registration of TB cases and thus less threat to personal integrity. A possibility to demand individualised service through the use of fee-for-service payments directly to physicians also seems attractive to many patients. A number of the components of the NTP strategy that have been put in place in order to secure optimal public health outcomes are lacking in the private sector. A dilemma for TB control is that this seems to be an important reason for why many people with TB opt for private providers where quality of care is virtually uncontrolled. The global threat of TB has led to calls for forceful measures to control TB. However, based on the findings in this study it is argued that the use of rigid approaches to TB control that do not encompass a strong component of responsiveness towards the needs of individuals may be counterproductive for public health. PMID:11234866

  13. Improving Health Promotion Using Quality Improvement Techniques in Australian Indigenous Primary Health Care.

    PubMed

    Percival, Nikki; O'Donoghue, Lynette; Lin, Vivian; Tsey, Komla; Bailie, Ross Stewart

    2016-01-01

    Although some areas of clinical health care are becoming adept at implementing continuous quality improvement (CQI) projects, there has been limited experimentation of CQI in health promotion. In this study, we examined the impact of a CQI intervention on health promotion in four Australian Indigenous primary health care centers. Our study objectives were to (a) describe the scope and quality of health promotion activities, (b) describe the status of health center system support for health promotion activities, and (c) introduce a CQI intervention and examine the impact on health promotion activities and health centers systems over 2 years. Baseline assessments showed suboptimal health center systems support for health promotion and significant evidence-practice gaps. After two annual CQI cycles, there were improvements in staff understanding of health promotion and systems for planning and documenting health promotion activities had been introduced. Actions to improve best practice health promotion, such as community engagement and intersectoral partnerships, were inhibited by the way health center systems were organized, predominately to support clinical and curative services. These findings suggest that CQI can improve the delivery of evidence-based health promotion by engaging front line health practitioners in decision-making processes about the design/redesign of health center systems to support the delivery of best practice health promotion. However, further and sustained improvements in health promotion will require broader engagement of management, senior staff, and members of the local community to address organizational and policy level barriers. PMID:27066470

  14. Improving Health Promotion Using Quality Improvement Techniques in Australian Indigenous Primary Health Care

    PubMed Central

    Percival, Nikki; O’Donoghue, Lynette; Lin, Vivian; Tsey, Komla; Bailie, Ross Stewart

    2016-01-01

    Although some areas of clinical health care are becoming adept at implementing continuous quality improvement (CQI) projects, there has been limited experimentation of CQI in health promotion. In this study, we examined the impact of a CQI intervention on health promotion in four Australian Indigenous primary health care centers. Our study objectives were to (a) describe the scope and quality of health promotion activities, (b) describe the status of health center system support for health promotion activities, and (c) introduce a CQI intervention and examine the impact on health promotion activities and health centers systems over 2 years. Baseline assessments showed suboptimal health center systems support for health promotion and significant evidence-practice gaps. After two annual CQI cycles, there were improvements in staff understanding of health promotion and systems for planning and documenting health promotion activities had been introduced. Actions to improve best practice health promotion, such as community engagement and intersectoral partnerships, were inhibited by the way health center systems were organized, predominately to support clinical and curative services. These findings suggest that CQI can improve the delivery of evidence-based health promotion by engaging front line health practitioners in decision-making processes about the design/redesign of health center systems to support the delivery of best practice health promotion. However, further and sustained improvements in health promotion will require broader engagement of management, senior staff, and members of the local community to address organizational and policy level barriers. PMID:27066470

  15. 3 CFR 8545 - Proclamation 8545 of August 5, 2010. National Health Center Week, 2010

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... new health care law, the Affordable Care Act, also strengthen and build upon our existing system of... quality, accessible, and affordable patient care as we strive to build a health care system equipped for... A Proclamation America’s community health centers are a vital component of our health care...

  16. Construction of an environmental quality index for public health research

    EPA Science Inventory

    A more comprehensive estimate of environmental quality would improve our understanding of the relationship between environmental conditions and human health. An environmental quality index (EQI) for all counties in the U.S. was developed. The EQI was developed in four parts: doma...

  17. The Quality Assurance Project: introducing quality improvement to primary health care in less developed countries.

    PubMed

    Nicholas, D D; Heiby, J R; Hatzell, T A

    1991-01-01

    Persistently excessive morbidity and mortality rates in less developed countries (LDCs) served by primary health care systems suggest that the quality of services is inadequate. The PRICOR project, sponsored by the United States Agency for International Development, has designed and implemented methods for quality assessment and problem solving in LDC health systems. After developing comprehensive lists of essential activities and tasks, similar to practice parameters, for seven child survival interventions, PRICOR supported comprehensive quality assessment studies in twelve LDC countries. The studies, yielding over 6000 observations of health worker-client encounters, indicated highly prevalent, serious program deficiencies in areas including diagnosis, treatment, patient education and supervision. To facilitate corrective action, PRICOR assisted managers in conducting operations research to resolve priority problems revealed by the assessments. The recently initiated Quality Assurance Project is building on PRICOR techniques in designing and implementing sustainable continuous quality improvement programs for LDC health systems. PMID:1782383

  18. Report Central: quality reporting tool in an electronic health record.

    PubMed

    Jung, Eunice; Li, Qi; Mangalampalli, Anil; Greim, Julie; Eskin, Michael S; Housman, Dan; Isikoff, Jeremy; Abend, Aaron H; Middleton, Blackford; Einbinder, Jonathan S

    2006-01-01

    Quality reporting tools, integrated with ambulatory electronic health records, can help clinicians and administrators understand performance, manage populations, and improve quality. Report Central is a secure web report delivery tool built on Crystal Reports XItrade mark and ASP.NET technologies. Pilot evaluation of Report Central indicates that clinicians prefer a quality reporting tool that is integrated with our home-grown EHR to support clinical workflow. PMID:17238590

  19. Report Central: Quality Reporting Tool in an Electronic Health Record

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Eunice; Li, Qi; Mangalampalli, Anil; Greim, Julie; Eskin, Michael S.; Housman, Dan; Isikoff, Jeremy; Abend, Aaron H.; Middleton, Blackford; Einbinder, Jonathan S.

    2006-01-01

    Quality reporting tools, integrated with ambulatory electronic health records, can help clinicians and administrators understand performance, manage populations, and improve quality. Report Central is a secure web report delivery tool built on Crystal Reports XI™ and ASP.NET technologies. Pilot evaluation of Report Central indicates that clinicians prefer a quality reporting tool that is integrated with our home-grown EHR to support clinical workflow. PMID:17238590

  20. Health Conditions and Perceived Quality of Life in Retirement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dorfman, Lorraine T.

    1995-01-01

    Investigates the effects of specific health conditions on perceived quality of life for retirees (n=451). Pulmonary disease was a predictor of dissatisfaction for both sexes. Pulmonary disease and heart attack were the strongest predictors of dissatisfaction with health for men, followed closely by stroke. Arthritis was the strongest predictor of…

  1. The Health-Related Quality of Life of Custodial Grandparents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neely-Barnes, Susan L.; Graff, J. Carolyn; Washington, Gregory

    2010-01-01

    Health-related quality of life (HRQOL) was explored in a sample of 119 custodial grandparents. A latent profile analysis identified three groups of grandparents along a continuum of good to poor HRQOL, with most custodial grandparents reporting Short Form-12 Health Survey (version 2) scores significantly below U.S. population means. Grandparent…

  2. The Quality of Work and Youth Mental Health.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mortimer, Jeylan T.; Harley, Carolyn; Staff, Jeremy

    2002-01-01

    Data from the Youth Development Study on adolescents who worked in high school were used to examine mental health, work stress, and work/school interactions. The quality of high school work experiences had significant consequences for mental states during high school, but had little effect on long-term mental health. (Contains 70 references.) (SK)

  3. Racial and Ethnic Disparities in the Quality of Health Care.

    PubMed

    Fiscella, Kevin; Sanders, Mechelle R

    2016-01-01

    The annual National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports document widespread and persistent racial and ethnic disparities. These disparities result from complex interactions between patient factors related to social disadvantage, clinicians, and organizational and health care system factors. Separate and unequal systems of health care between states, between health care systems, and between clinicians constrain the resources that are available to meet the needs of disadvantaged groups, contribute to unequal outcomes, and reinforce implicit bias. Recent data suggest slow progress in many areas but have documented a few notable successes in eliminating these disparities. To eliminate these disparities, continued progress will require a collective national will to ensure health care equity through expanded health insurance coverage, support for primary care, and public accountability based on progress toward defined, time-limited objectives using evidence-based, sufficiently resourced, multilevel quality improvement strategies that engage patients, clinicians, health care organizations, and communities. PMID:26789384

  4. Environmental Quality Index and Childhood Mental Health

    EPA Science Inventory

    Childhood mental disorders affect between 13%-20% of children in the United States (US) annually and impact the child, family, and community. Literature suggests associations exist between environmental and children’s mental health such as air pollution with autism and ADHD...

  5. The Legacy of the U. S. Public Health Services Study of Untreated Syphilis in African American Men at Tuskegee on the Affordable Care Act and Health Care Reform Fifteen Years After President Clinton’s Apology

    PubMed Central

    Mays, Vickie M.

    2013-01-01

    This special issue addresses the legacy of the United States Public Health Service Syphilis Study on health reform, particularly the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The 12 manuscripts cover the history and current practices of ethical abuses affecting American Indians, Latinos, Asian Americans and African Americans in the United States and in one case, internationally. Commentaries and essays include the voice of a daughter of one of the study participants in which we learn of the stigma and maltreatment some of the families experienced and how the study has impacted generations within the families. Consideration is given in one essay to utilizing narrative storytelling with the families to help promote healing. This article provides the reader a roadmap to the themes that emerged from the collection of articles. These themes include population versus individual consent issues, need for better government oversight in research and health care, the need for overhauling our bioethics training to develop a population level, culturally driven approach to research bioethics. The articles challenge and inform us that some of our assumptions about how the consent process best works to protect racial/ethnic minorities may be merely assumptions and not proven facts. Articles challenge the belief that low participation rates seen in biomedical studies have resulted from the legacy of the USPHS Syphilis Study rather than a confluence of factors rooted in racism, bias and negative treatment. Articles in this special issue challenge the “cultural paranoia” of mistrust and provide insights into how the distrust may serve to lengthen rather than shorten the lives of racial/ethnic minorities who have been used as guinea pigs on more than one occasion. We hope that the guidance offered on the importance of developing a new framework to bioethics can be integrated into the foundation of health care reform. PMID:23630410

  6. The Legacy of the U. S. Public Health Services Study of Untreated Syphilis in African American Men at Tuskegee on the Affordable Care Act and Health Care Reform Fifteen Years After President Clinton's Apology.

    PubMed

    Mays, Vickie M

    2012-11-01

    This special issue addresses the legacy of the United States Public Health Service Syphilis Study on health reform, particularly the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The 12 manuscripts cover the history and current practices of ethical abuses affecting American Indians, Latinos, Asian Americans and African Americans in the United States and in one case, internationally. Commentaries and essays include the voice of a daughter of one of the study participants in which we learn of the stigma and maltreatment some of the families experienced and how the study has impacted generations within the families. Consideration is given in one essay to utilizing narrative storytelling with the families to help promote healing. This article provides the reader a roadmap to the themes that emerged from the collection of articles. These themes include population versus individual consent issues, need for better government oversight in research and health care, the need for overhauling our bioethics training to develop a population level, culturally driven approach to research bioethics. The articles challenge and inform us that some of our assumptions about how the consent process best works to protect racial/ethnic minorities may be merely assumptions and not proven facts. Articles challenge the belief that low participation rates seen in biomedical studies have resulted from the legacy of the USPHS Syphilis Study rather than a confluence of factors rooted in racism, bias and negative treatment. Articles in this special issue challenge the "cultural paranoia" of mistrust and provide insights into how the distrust may serve to lengthen rather than shorten the lives of racial/ethnic minorities who have been used as guinea pigs on more than one occasion. We hope that the guidance offered on the importance of developing a new framework to bioethics can be integrated into the foundation of health care reform. PMID:23630410

  7. Accessing Quality Online Health Information: What Is the Solution?

    PubMed

    Boyer, Célia

    2016-01-01

    The majority of the adult population in both Europe and North America have access to the internet. Over 70% state that they have used the internet to look for health information and the majority started their search at a search engine. Given that search engines list sites according to popularity and not quality, it is imperative that users have a means of discerning trustworthy and honest information from non-reliable health information. The HONcode, a set of eight quality guidelines, ensures access to standardized trustworthy health information which can be used as a tool to guide consumers. PMID:27332317

  8. Enhancing the quality of case studies in health services research.

    PubMed Central

    Yin, R K

    1999-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To provide guidance on improving the quality of case studies in health services research. DATA SOURCES: Secondary data, drawing from previous case study research. RESEARCH DESIGN: Guidance is provided to two audiences: potential case study investigators (eight items) and reviewers of case study proposals (four additional items). PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The guidance demonstrates that many operational steps can be undertaken to improve the quality of case studies. These steps have been a hallmark of high-quality case studies in related fields but have not necessarily been practiced in health services research. CONCLUSIONS: Given higher-quality case studies, the case study method can become a valuable tool for health services research. Images Figure 3 PMID:10591280

  9. Quality and safety in health care, part V: introduction to crossing the quality chasm.

    PubMed

    Harolds, Jay A

    2015-12-01

    The Institute of Medicine report Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century focused on quality issues generally in health care, not only on mistakes. It made numerous recommendations for improving health care, including 6 aims and 10 rules to guide policy makers. This was intended to help redesign health care. However, the authors of the report did not attempt to provide all the answers because they realized that innovation was important and that they could not foresee all the sociopolitical forces and technological and research breakthroughs in the future. PMID:26402122

  10. Increasing access to quality health care for the poor: Community perceptions on quality care in Uganda

    PubMed Central

    Kiguli, Julie; Ekirapa-Kiracho, Elizabeth; Okui, Olico; Mutebi, Aloysius; MacGregor, Hayley; Pariyo, George William

    2009-01-01

    This paper examines the community’s perspectives and perceptions on quality of health care delivery in two Uganda districts. The paper addresses community concerns on service quality. It focuses on the poor because they are a vulnerable group and often bear a huge burden of disease. Community views were solicited and obtained using eight focus group discussions, six in-depth and 12 key informant interviews. User perceptions and definitions of the quality of health services depended on a number of variables related to technical competence, accessibility to services, interpersonal relations and presence of adequate drugs, supplies, staff, and facility amenities. Results indicate that service delivery to the poor in the general population is perceived to be of low quality. The factors that were mentioned as affecting the quality of services delivered were inadequate trained health workers, shortage of essential drugs, poor attitude of the health workers, and long distances to health facilities. This paper argues that there should be an improvement in the quality of health services with particular attention being paid to the poor. Despite wide focus on improvement of the existing infrastructure and donor funding, there is still low satisfaction with health services and poor perceived accessibility. PMID:19936148

  11. Health-Related Quality of Life and Health-Promoting Behaviors in Black Men

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Calvert, Wilma J.; Isaac,, E. Paulette; Johnson, Sharon

    2012-01-01

    This study examined the health-related quality of life and health-promoting behaviors in a convenience sample of low-income black men. Almost three-fourths reported their overall health as good or better. However, the mean number of recent (that is, past 30 days) mentally unhealthy days was 13.12, and more than half reported frequent (greater than…

  12. Quality of sleep and health-related quality of life in renal transplant recipients

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Hong-Xia; Lin, Jun; Lin, Xiao-Hong; Wallace, Linda; Teng, Sha; Zhang, Shu-Ping; Hao, Yu-Fang

    2015-01-01

    Aims and objectives: The purpose of this study was to examine the sleep quality and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in patients after renal transplantation and to explore the relationship between the quality of sleep and the HRQOL. Background: Sleep disorders are still an important clinical problem after renal transplantation. Previous studies mainly focused on patients’ sleep quality before kidney transplant. More studies are needed to document sleep quality after renal transplantation. Design: A cross-sectional design was used in this study. Methods: A convenience sample of renal transplant recipients was recruited at an outpatient transplant clinic of a general hospital in Beijing, China. The Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) was used to measure quality of sleep. The Medical Outcomes Study 36-item Short Form (MOS SF-36) was used to measure health-related quality of life. Results: The average PSQI score of the 204 renal transplant recipients was 5.81±3.52, significantly lower than the norm. Fifty (24.5%) recipients were classified as having poor sleep quality (global PSQI > 7). The mean scores of renal transplant recipients for SF-36 Mental Component Summary (MCS) and Physical Component Summary (PCS) were 47.57±6.71 and 48.26±9.66 respectively. Compared with residents in Sichuan province, recipients’ scores for SF-36 dimensions were statistically lower except the dimension of mental health. SF-36 scores of poor sleepers (PSQI > 7) were significantly lower than the good sleepers (PSQI ≤ 7) in both the MCS and PCS. Significant differences exist between the groups in physical function, bodily pain, vitality, and mental health dimensions. Conclusions: Sleep quality and HRQOL of patients after renal transplantation were lower than the norm. Poor sleep is associated with lower HRQOL. Relevance to clinical practice: Health professionals need to pay attention to sleep quality and HRQOL in renal transplant recipients and take appropriate measures to

  13. Air Quality Index (AQI) -- A Guide to Air Quality and Your Health

    MedlinePlus

    ... the AQI value, the greater the level of air pollution and the greater the health concern. For example, ... to 50. Air quality is considered satisfactory, and air pollution poses little or no risk. "Moderate" AQI is ...

  14. Quality and Safety in Health Care, Part II: Three Early Reports on Quality.

    PubMed

    Harolds, Jay A

    2015-09-01

    The 1990 Institute of Medicine report Medicare: A Strategy for Quality Assurance offered a definition of quality in health care and recommendations on how to achieve it. The forces for change would include different activities by the federal government, informed consumers, professionalism, and private initiatives. Eight years later, the National Roundtable report Statement on Quality of Care indicated that there were major problems of underuse, overuse, and misuse of health care services. In the same year, the President's Advisory Commission report Quality First: Better Health Care for All Americans discussed major problems with health care and proposed many initiatives to correct them, and also recommended a Bill of Rights and Responsibilities for the patients. PMID:26244402

  15. Informatics Resources to Support Health Care Quality Improvement in the Veterans Health Administration

    PubMed Central

    Hynes, Denise M.; Perrin, Ruth A.; Rappaport, Steven; Stevens, Joanne M.; Demakis, John G.

    2004-01-01

    Information systems are increasingly important for measuring and improving health care quality. A number of integrated health care delivery systems use advanced information systems and integrated decision support to carry out quality assurance activities, but none as large as the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). The VHA's Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI) is a large-scale, multidisciplinary quality improvement initiative designed to ensure excellence in all areas where VHA provides health care services, including inpatient, outpatient, and long-term care settings. In this paper, we describe the role of information systems in the VHA QUERI process, highlight the major information systems critical to this quality improvement process, and discuss issues associated with the use of these systems. PMID:15187063

  16. Measuring health related quality of life in juvenile rheumatoid arthritis

    PubMed Central

    Carle, Adam C.; Dewitt, E. Morgan; Seid, M.

    2011-01-01

    Pediatric researchers and clinicians increasingly recognize the importance of measuring the impact of childhood disease across many aspects of a child’s life. In this review, we describe four measures of health related quality of life (HRQOL) designed specifically for children with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA). HRQOL generally refers to how an individual feels about aspects of their life in relation to their health. The World Health Organization originally described HRQOL as minimally including: physical, mental, and social health dimensions.1 Subsequent HRQOL definitions, while varied, have incorporated the notion that individuals have an important and distinct viewpoint regarding their disease and the quality of their life.2 They have also often emphasized HRQOL’s subjective nature.2 These features present unique challenges when measuring HRQOL in children. Cognizant of these issues, we review the development and psychometric properties of the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory (PedsQL) Rheumatology Module 3.0, the Juvenile Arthritis Quality of Life Questionnaire (JAQQ), the Paediatric Rheumatology Quality of Life Scale (PRQL), and the Childhood Arthritis Health Profile (CAHP). PMID:22588764

  17. Medical loss ratio regulation under the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Harrington, Scott E

    2013-01-01

    The minimum medical loss ratio (MLR) regulations in the Affordable Care Act guarantee that a specific percentage of health insurance premiums is spent on medical care and specified activities to improve health care quality. This paper analyzes the regulations' potential unintended consequences and incentive effects, including: higher medical costs and premiums for some insurers; less innovation to align consumer, provider, and health plan incentives, less consumer choice and increased market concentration; and the risk that insurers will pay rebates if claim costs are lower than projected when premiums are established, despite the regulations' permitted "credibility adjustments." The paper discusses modifications and alternatives to the MLR regulations to help achieve their stated goals with less potential for adverse effects. PMID:23720876

  18. Service Quality Assessment Scale (SQAS): An Instrument for Evaluating Service Quality of Health-Fitness Clubs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lam, Eddie T. C.; Zhang, James J.; Jensen, Barbara E.

    2005-01-01

    This study was designed to develop the Service Quality Assessment Scale to evaluate the service quality of health-fitness clubs. Through a review of literature, field observations, interviews, modified application of the Delphi technique, and a pilot study, a preliminary scale with 46 items was formulated. The preliminary scale was administered to…

  19. Informal payments and the quality of health care: Mechanisms revealed by Tanzanian health workers.

    PubMed

    Mæstad, Ottar; Mwisongo, Aziza

    2011-02-01

    Informal payments for health services are common in many transitional and developing countries. The aim of this paper is to investigate the nature of informal payments in the health sector of Tanzania and to identify mechanisms through which informal payments may affect the quality of health care. Our focus is on the effect of informal payments on health worker behaviours, in particular the interpersonal dynamics among health workers at their workplaces. We organised eight focus groups with 58 health workers representing different cadres and levels of care in one rural and one urban district in Tanzania. We found that health workers at all levels receive informal payments in a number of different contexts. Health workers sometimes share the payments received, but only partially, and more rarely within the cadre than across cadres. Our findings indicate that health workers are involved in 'rent-seeking' activities, such as creating artificial shortages and deliberately lowering the quality of service, in order to extract extra payments from patients or to bargain for a higher share of the payments received by their colleagues. The discussions revealed that many health workers think that the distribution of informal payments is grossly unfair. The findings suggest that informal payments can impact negatively on the quality of health care through rent-seeking behaviours and through frustrations created by the unfair allocation of payments. Interestingly, the presence of corruption may also induce non-corrupt workers to reduce the quality of care. Positive impacts can occur because informal payments may induce health workers to increase their efforts, and maybe more so if there is competition among health workers about receiving the payments. Moreover, informal payments add to health workers' incomes and might thus contribute to retention of health workers within the health sector. PMID:20709420

  20. How the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement could undermine PHARMAC and threaten access to affordable medicines and health equity in New Zealand.

    PubMed

    Gleeson, Deborah; Lopert, Ruth; Reid, Papaarangi

    2013-10-01

    New Zealand's Pharmaceutical Management Agency (PHARMAC) has been highly successful in facilitating affordable access to medicines through a combination of aggressive price negotiations, innovative procurement mechanisms, and careful evaluation of value for money. Recently the US government, through the establishment of a series of bilateral and plurilateral "free" trade agreements, has attempted to constrain the pharmaceutical access programs of other countries in order to promote the interests of the pharmaceutical industry. The Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) represents the latest example; through the TPPA the US is seeking to eliminate therapeutic reference pricing, introduce appeals processes for pharmaceutical companies to challenge formulary listing and pricing decisions, and introduce onerous disclosure and "transparency" provisions that facilitate industry involvement in decision-making around coverage and pricing of medicines (and medical devices). This paper argues that the US agenda, if successfully prosecuted, would be likely to increase costs and reduce access to affordable medicines for New Zealanders. This would in turn be likely to exacerbate known inequities in access to medicines and thus disproportionately affect disadvantaged population groups, including Māori and Pacific peoples. PMID:23992756

  1. Initiation of quality improvement activities in mental health services.

    PubMed

    Tobin, M; Chen, L

    1999-06-01

    In the public sector mental health service setting, accountability for quality has often been considered the responsibility of the individual clinician. This presents a particular challenge for introducing an organization-wide quality improvement culture in this setting. The introduction of a systemic view of quality may encounter resistance from individual clinicians reluctant to accept that some clinical autonomy must be subsumed within more standardized patterns of intervention and evaluation. Services must firstly tackle the issue of clinicians' readiness to embrace such a culture, which requires strong direction from the executive level. The area of recently diagnosed psychosis was selected in one public sector mental health service as a starting point for initiating the quality improvement culture. The eventual outcome for the organization has been a positive commitment to improvement, but the journey was long and hard. This paper describes the beginning of this ultimately rewarding journey. PMID:10408753

  2. Assessing Quality across Health Care Subsystems in Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Puig, Andrea; Pagán, José A.; Wong, Rebeca

    2012-01-01

    Recent healthcare reform efforts in Mexico have focused on the need to improve the efficiency and equity of a fragmented healthcare system. In light of these reform initiatives, there is a need to assess whether healthcare subsystems are effective at providing high-quality healthcare to all Mexicans. Nationally representative household survey data from the 2006 Encuesta Nacional de Salud y Nutrición (National Health and Nutrition Survey) were used to assess perceived healthcare quality across different subsystems. Using a sample of 7234 survey respondents, we found evidence of substantial heterogeneity in healthcare quality assessments across healthcare subsystems favoring private providers over social security institutions. These differences across subsystems remained even after adjusting for socioeconomic, demographic, and health factors. Our analysis suggests that improvements in efficiency and equity can be achieved by assessing the factors that contribute to heterogeneity in quality across subsystems. PMID:19305224

  3. Merging Air Quality and Public Health Decision Support Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hudspeth, W. B.; Bales, C. L.

    2003-12-01

    The New Mexico Air Quality Mapper (NMAQM) is a Web-based, open source GIS prototype application that Earth Data Analysis Center is developing under a NASA Cooperative Agreement. NMAQM enhances and extends existing data and imagery delivery systems with an existing Public Health system called the Rapid Syndrome Validation Project (RSVP). RSVP is a decision support system operating in several medical and public health arenas. It is evolving to ingest remote sensing data as input to provide early warning of human health threats, especially those related to anthropogenic atmospheric pollutants and airborne pathogens. The NMAQM project applies measurements of these atmospheric pollutants, derived from both remotely sensed data as well as from in-situ air quality networks, to both forecasting and retrospective analyses that influence human respiratory health. NMAQM provides a user-friendly interface for visualizing and interpreting environmentally-linked epidemiological phenomena. The results, and the systems made to provide the information, will be applicable not only to decision-makers in the public health realm, but also to air quality organizations, demographers, community planners, and other professionals in information technology, and social and engineering sciences. As an accessible and interactive mapping and analysis application, it allows environment and health personnel to study historic data for hypothesis generation and trend analysis, and then, potentially, to predict air quality conditions from daily data acquisitions. Additional spin off benefits to such users include the identification of gaps in the distribution of in-situ monitoring stations, the dissemination of air quality data to the public, and the discrimination of local vs. more regional sources of air pollutants that may bear on decisions relating to public health and public policy.

  4. Quality and cost-effective management of mental health care.

    PubMed

    Burton, W N; Hoy, D A; Bonin, R L; Gladstone, L

    1989-04-01

    Corporations have reduced their mental health care benefits by limits on coverage for such services. We report on a comprehensive mental health care program, including prevention and early intervention, hospital utilization review, and consulting psychiatrist, which has improved the quality and has significantly reduced inpatient insurance psychiatric hospitalization costs. Mental health service coverage was actually enhanced. Inpatient psychiatric hospitalization costs 12 months before and after the implementation of a concurrent psychiatric hospital utilization review program were reviewed for a major corporation. Total hospital days and average length of stay decreased by 43% whereas total inpatient psychiatric hospital charges decreased by $309,518. Total inpatient days decreased by 1045. Quality and cost-effective comprehensive psychiatric health care services can be offered by major corporations providing that such benefits are carefully designed and managed. PMID:2715844

  5. The management of health care service quality. A physician perspective

    PubMed Central

    Bobocea, L; Gheorghe, IR; Spiridon, St; Gheorghe, CM; Purcarea, VL

    2016-01-01

    Applying marketing in health care services is presently an essential element for every manager or policy maker. In order to be successful, a health care organization has to identify an accurate measurement scale for defining service quality due to competitive pressure and cost values. The most widely employed scale in the services sector is SERVQUAL scale. In spite of being successfully adopted in fields such as brokerage and banking, experts concluded that the SERVQUAL scale should be modified depending on the specific context. Moreover, the SERVQUAL scale focused on the consumer’s perspective regarding service quality. While service quality was measured with the help of SERVQUAL scale, other experts identified a structure-process-outcome design, which, they thought, would be more suitable for health care services. This approach highlights a different perspective on investigating the service quality, namely, the physician’s perspective. Further, we believe that the Seven Prong Model for Improving Service Quality has been adopted in order to effectively measure the health care service in a Romanian context from a physician’s perspective. PMID:27453745

  6. The management of health care service quality. A physician perspective.

    PubMed

    Bobocea, L; Gheorghe, I R; Spiridon, St; Gheorghe, C M; Purcarea, V L

    2016-01-01

    Applying marketing in health care services is presently an essential element for every manager or policy maker. In order to be successful, a health care organization has to identify an accurate measurement scale for defining service quality due to competitive pressure and cost values. The most widely employed scale in the services sector is SERVQUAL scale. In spite of being successfully adopted in fields such as brokerage and banking, experts concluded that the SERVQUAL scale should be modified depending on the specific context. Moreover, the SERVQUAL scale focused on the consumer's perspective regarding service quality. While service quality was measured with the help of SERVQUAL scale, other experts identified a structure-process-outcome design, which, they thought, would be more suitable for health care services. This approach highlights a different perspective on investigating the service quality, namely, the physician's perspective. Further, we believe that the Seven Prong Model for Improving Service Quality has been adopted in order to effectively measure the health care service in a Romanian context from a physician's perspective. PMID:27453745

  7. Introducing quality management into primary health care services in Uganda.

    PubMed Central

    Omaswa, F.; Burnham, G.; Baingana, G.; Mwebesa, H.; Morrow, R.

    1997-01-01

    In 1994, a national quality assurance programme was established in Uganda to strengthen district-level management of primary health care services. Within 18 months both objective and subjective improvements in the quality of services had been observed. In the examples documented here, there was a major reduction in maternal mortality among pregnant women referred to Jinja District Hospital, a reduction in waiting times and increased patient satisfaction at Masaka District Hospital, and a marked reduction in reported cases of measles in Arua District. Beyond these quantitative improvements, increased morale of district health team members, improved satisfaction among patients, and greater involvement of local government in the decisions of district health committees have been observed. At the central level, the increased coordination of activities has led to new guidelines for financial management and the procurement of supplies. District quality management workshops followed up by regular support visits from the Ministry of Health headquarters have led to a greater understanding by central staff of the issues faced at the district level. The quality assurance programme has also fostered improved coordination among national disease-control programmes. Difficulties encountered at the central level have included delays in carrying out district support visits and the failure to provide appropriate support. At the district level, some health teams tackled problems over which they had little control or which were overly complex; others lacked the management capacity for problem solving. PMID:9185368

  8. High-quality Health Information Provision for Stroke Patients

    PubMed Central

    Du, Hong-Sheng; Ma, Jing-Jian; Li, Mu

    2016-01-01

    Objective: High-quality information provision can allow stroke patients to effectively participate in healthcare decision-making, better manage the stroke, and make a good recovery. In this study, we reviewed information needs of stroke patients, methods for providing information to patients, and considerations needed by the information providers. Data Sources: The literature concerning or including information provision for patients with stroke in English was collected from PubMed published from 1990 to 2015. Study Selection: We included all the relevant articles on information provision for stroke patients in English, with no limitation of study design. Results: Stroke is a major public health concern worldwide. High-quality and effective health information provision plays an essential role in helping patients to actively take part in decision-making and healthcare, and empowering them to effectively self-manage their long-standing chronic conditions. Different methods for providing information to patients have their relative merits and suitability, and as a result, the effective strategies taken by health professionals may include providing high-quality information, meeting patients’ individual needs, using suitable methods in providing information, and maintaining active involvement of patients. Conclusions: It is suggested that to enable stroke patients to access high-quality health information, greater efforts need to be made to ensure patients to receive accurate and current evidence-based information which meets their individual needs. Health professionals should use suitable information delivery methods, and actively involve stroke patients in information provision. PMID:27569241

  9. Improving the quality of health care: what's taking so long?

    PubMed

    Chassin, Mark R

    2013-10-01

    Nearly fourteen years ago the Institute of Medicine's report, To Err Is Human: Building a Safer Health System, triggered a national movement to improve patient safety. Despite the substantial and concentrated efforts that followed, quality and safety problems in health care continue to routinely result in harm to patients. Desired progress will not be achieved unless substantial changes are made to the way in which quality improvement is conducted. Alongside important efforts to eliminate preventable complications of care, there must also be an effort to seriously address the widespread overuse of health services. That overuse, which places patients at risk of harm and wastes resources at the same time, has been almost entirely left out of recent quality improvement endeavors. Newer and much more effective strategies and tools are needed to address the complex quality challenges confronting health care. Tools such as Lean, Six Sigma, and change management are proving highly effective in tackling problems as difficult as hand-off communication failures and patient falls. Finally, the organizational culture of most American hospitals and other health care organizations must change. To create a culture of safety, leaders must eliminate intimidating behaviors that suppress the reporting of errors and unsafe conditions. Leaders must also hold everyone accountable for adherence to safe practices. PMID:24101066

  10. Mainstreaming quality and safety: a reformulation of quality and safety education for health professions students

    PubMed Central

    Ironside, Pamela M; Ogrinc, Gregory S

    2011-01-01

    The urgent need to expand the ability of health professionals to improve the quality and safety of patient care in the USA has been well documented. Yet the current methods of teaching quality and safety to health professionals are inadequate for the task. To the extent that quality and safety are addressed at all, they are taught using pedagogies with a narrow focus on content transmission, didactic sessions that are spatially and temporally distant from clinical work, and quality and safety projects segregated from the provision of actual patient care. In this article an argument for a transformative reorientation in quality and safety education for health professions is made. This transformation will require new pedagogies in which a) quality improvement is an integral part of all clinical encounters, b) health professions students and their clinical teachers become co-learners working together to improve patient outcomes and systems of care, c) improvement work is envisioned as the interdependent collaboration of a set of professionals with different backgrounds and perspectives skilfully optimising their work processes for the benefit of patients, and d) assessment in health professions education focuses on not just individual performance but also how the care team's patients fared and how the systems of care were improved. PMID:21450779

  11. Oral health, nutrition, and oral health-related quality of life among Korean older adults.

    PubMed

    Jung, Young-Mi; Shin, Dong-Soo

    2008-10-01

    Oral health affects older adults and their quality of life. Oral care is reported to have a low priority in nursing care of older adults, and repeated assessments to detect oral health problems are seldom performed. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships among level of oral health, nutrition, and oral health-related quality of life (OHRQL) and to identify predictors of OHRQL in Korean older adults. The design was a descriptive, correlational study. The level of oral pain contributed most significantly to OHRQL, followed by nutrition and number of teeth. These three predictor variables explained 46.4% of the variance in OHRQL. Older adults could benefit from oral health care, such as routine screening for oral health and nutritional status. Nurses are at the forefront in providing such services, and it is recommended they integrate oral health care into their routine nursing care plans. PMID:18942537

  12. Quality and consumer decision making in the market for health insurance and health care services.

    PubMed

    Kolstad, Jonathan T; Chernew, Michael E

    2009-02-01

    This article reviews the literature relating quality to consumer choice of health plan or health care provider. Evidence suggests that consumers tend to choose better performing health plans and providers and are responsive to initiatives that provide quality information. The response to quality and quality information differs significantly among consumers and across population subgroups. As such the effect of quality information on choice is apparent in only a relatively small, though perhaps consequential, number of consumers. Despite the wealth of findings on the topic to date, the authors suggest directions for future work, including better assessment of the dynamic issues related to information release, as well as a better understanding of how the response to information varies across different groups of patients. PMID:19029288

  13. Basic issues related to quantity and quality of health care, and quality assurance in Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Jacobalis, S

    1989-01-01

    Issues and problems related to the needs for quantity and quality in health care have been presented. The need for quantity has been quite successfully addressed in the last 20 years. Better quality of health care is very much in the minds of policy makers, providers and the informed public. Quality assessment and assurance as a programmed and on-going process in individual hospitals is systematically promoted and developed. An accreditation system for hospitals is planned for the future. This paper has not been able to contribute anything of value to the current practice of quality assurance. The industrialized world has passed the stages Indonesia is now going through. To some Australian colleagues, this presentation perhaps has revealed that one of their closest neighbours is struggling hard to improve the quality of life of its people, despite the tremendous problems and constraints with which it is confronted. Australia has always provided a helping hand in this struggle. PMID:2486044

  14. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

    THOMAS, 111th Congress

    Rep. Rangel, Charles B. [D-NY-15

    2009-09-17

    03/23/2010 Became Public Law No: 111-148. (TXT | PDF) (All Actions) Notes: H.R.4872 makes a number of health-related financing and revenue changes to this bill. Read together, this bill and the health care-related provisions of H.R.4872 are commonly referred to as the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Tracker: This bill has the status Became LawHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  15. Marital quality and health: A meta-analytic review

    PubMed Central

    Robles, Theodore F.; Slatcher, Richard B.; Trombello, Joseph M.; McGinn, Meghan M.

    2013-01-01

    This meta-analysis reviewed 126 published empirical articles over the past 50 years describing associations between marital relationship quality and physical health in over 72,000 individuals. Health outcomes included clinical endpoints (objective assessments of function, disease severity, and mortality; subjective health assessments) and surrogate endpoints (biological markers that substitute for clinical endpoints, such as blood pressure). Biological mediators included cardiovascular reactivity and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis activity. Greater marital quality was related to better health, with mean effect sizes from r = .07 to .21, including lower risk of mortality, r = .11, and lower cardiovascular reactivity during marital conflict, r = −.13, but not daily cortisol slopes or cortisol reactivity during conflict. The small effect sizes were similar in magnitude to previously found associations between health behaviors (e.g., diet) and health outcomes. Effect sizes for a small subset of clinical outcomes were susceptible to publication bias. In some studies, effect sizes remained significant after accounting for confounds such as age and socioeconomic status. Studies with a higher proportion of women in the sample demonstrated larger effect sizes, but we found little evidence for gender differences in studies that explicitly tested gender moderation, with the exception of surrogate endpoint studies. Our conclusions are limited by small numbers of studies for specific health outcomes, unexplained heterogeneity, and designs that limit causal inferences. These findings highlight the need to explicitly test affective, health behavior, and biological mechanisms in future research, and focus on moderating factors that may alter the relationship between marital quality and health. PMID:23527470

  16. Is there a relationship between alcohol quality and health?

    PubMed

    Lachenmeier, Dirk W; Rehm, Jürgen

    2013-01-01

    A clear definition of 'alcohol quality' is currently not available and the use of the term varies considerably depending on the scientific field and the individual author. Intrinsic factors of 'alcohol quality' may be taste and flavour or the absence of certain toxic contaminants. Extrinsic factors may include price, brand image, labelling or perceived authenticity, which are typically unrelated to public health outcomes. This article shows that using the term 'alcohol quality' with varying definitions and underlying concepts may lead to misunderstandings, if not to clear misinformation (sometimes also intentionally by industry) when 'lower quality' is interpreted as 'more toxic' especially in the case of substitution of commercial beverages to unrecorded alcohol. We suggest the use of clearly defined terms instead, such as 'taste quality' or 'brand price', whenever possible. PMID:22986011

  17. Increasing the Supply of Quality, Accessible, Affordable Child Care: An Economic Development Strategy for the North Central Region. NCRCRD Policy Briefs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Traill, Saskia; Brown, Brentt

    2005-01-01

    The child care industry has not been fully integrated into economic development activities despite its growing importance in the economy. This is, in large part, because child care is not usually thought of as an element of economic development. As a result, states in the North Central region are not maximizing the economic benefits from quality,…

  18. Promoting Children's Health-Related Quality of Life.

    PubMed

    Sisk, Cara

    2016-01-01

    Pediatric health care practitioners have the ability to impact a child's HRQoL. Children's HRQoL is well documented in the literature as an important matter for children receiving health care, with research to support its significance in their lives. Children and adolescents have much to teach practitioners, and listening to their perspectives of health care experiences has a direct effect on the clinician's ability to improve their HRQoL. Pediatric practitioners focused on providing high-quality patient care must incorporate the goal to positively influence children's HRQoL. PMID:27254979

  19. eEurope 2002: Quality Criteria for Health related Websites

    PubMed Central

    2002-01-01

    Background A number of organisations have begun to provide specific tools for searching, rating, and grading this information, while others have set up codes of conduct by which site providers can attest to their high quality services. The aim of such tools is to assist individuals to sift through the mountains of information available so as to be better able to discern valid and reliable messages from those which are misleading or inaccurate. Objective Recognising that European citizens are avid consumers of health related information on the internet and recognising that they are already using the types of rating system described above, the European Council at Feira on June 19-20 2000 supported an initiative within eEurope 2002 to develop a core set of Quality Criteria for Health Related Websites. The specific aim was to draw up a commonly agreed set of simple quality criteria on which Member States, as well as public and private bodies, may draw in the development of quality initiatives for health related websites. These criteria should be applied in addition to relevant Community law. Methods A meeting was held during 2001 which drew together key players from Government departments, International Organisations, non-governmental organisations and industry, to explore current practices and experiments in this field. Some sixty invited participants from all the Member States, Norway, Switzerland, and the United States of America took part in the meeting of June 7-8, 2001: they included delegates from industrial, medical, and patient interest groups, delegates from Member States' governments, and key invited speakers from the field of health information ethics. These individuals, and many others, also took part in the web-based consultation which was open from august to November 2001. Results The broad headings for quality criteria identified include Transparency and Honesty, Authority, Privacy and data protection, Updating of information, Accountability

  20. Achieving Sustainable Construction in Affordable Housing

    SciTech Connect

    Barcik, M.K.; Creech, D.B.; Ternes, M.P.

    1998-12-07

    An energy-efficient design and construction checklist and information sheets on energy-efficient design and construction are two products being developed. These products will help affordable housing providers take the first steps toward a whole-house approach to the design and implementation of energy-efficient construction practices. The checklist presents simple and clear guidance on energy improvements that can be readily addressed now by most affordable housing providers. The information sheets complement the checklist by providing installation instructions and material specifications that are accompanied by detailed graphics. The information sheets also identify benefits of recommended energy-efficiency measures and procedures including cost savings and impacts on health and comfort. This paper presents details on the checklist and information sheets and discusses their use in two affordable housing projects.

  1. College Student Mental Health and Quality of Workplace Relationships

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vaughn, Allison A.; Drake, Richard R.; Haydock, Sarah

    2016-01-01

    Objective: The goal of this study was to examine the effect of quality of workplace relationships on the mental health of employed undergraduates, with work-related variables as a potential mechanism. Participants: Participants were 170 employed students (76% female, average age = 19.9) recruited in March 2011. Most worked part-time and had been…

  2. Overview of the quality assurance movement in health care.

    PubMed

    de Jonge, Vincent; Sint Nicolaas, Jerome; van Leerdam, Monique E; Kuipers, Ernst J

    2011-06-01

    This chapter aims to describe the origin and current status of quality assurance (QA) in health care and to provide a background of similar developments in other industries, which have provided a major impetus for QA initiatives in health care. The interest in quality and safety in the health care sector has rapidly risen over the past decade. Without important lessons learnt from other industries, the interest and obtained improvements would have been far less fast. Knowledge on basic principles and challenges faced by other industries like the airline, car, and nuclear energy industry, that drove quality improvement projects, is of major relevance to understand the evolutions taking place in health care. To fully appreciate the QA movement, and design or implement quality improvement projects, its basic principles need to be understood. This chapter aims to give insights in basic principles underlying QA, and to discuss historical lessons that have been learnt from other industries. Furthermore, it discusses how to implement and assure a sustainable QA program. PMID:21764002

  3. Health Effects of Air Quality Regulations in Delhi, India.

    PubMed

    Foster, Andrew; Kumar, Naresh

    2011-03-01

    This, the first systematic study, quantifies the health effects of air quality regulations in Delhi, which adopted radical measures to improve air quality, including, for example, the conversion of all commercial vehicles to compressed natural gas (CNG), and the closure of polluting industries in residential areas from 2000 to 2002. Air pollution data, collected at 113 sites (spread across Delhi and its neighboring areas) from July-December 2003, were used to compute exposure at the place of residence of 3,989 subjects. A socio-economic and respiratory health survey was administered in 1,576 households. This survey collected time-use, residence histories, demographic information, and direct measurements of lung function with subjects. The optimal interpolation methods were used to link air pollution and respiratory health data at the place of their residence. Resident histories, in combination with secondary data, were used to impute cumulative exposure prior to the air-quality interventions, and the effects of recent air quality measures on lung function were then evaluated. Three important findings emerge from the analysis. First, the interventions were associated with a significant improvement in respiratory health. Second, the effect of these interventions varied significantly by gender and income. Third, consistent with a causal interpretation of these results, effects were the strongest among those individuals who spend a disproportionate share of their time out-of-doors. PMID:21461142

  4. QUALITY ASSURANCE GUIDELINES FOR ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH EFFECTS RESEARCH

    EPA Science Inventory

    This document is a statement of the quality assurance (QA) policy of the Health Effects Research Laboratory, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina (HERL-RTP). It describes the HERL-RTP QA organization and the QA responsibilities of both mana...

  5. Health Effects of Air Quality Regulations in Delhi, India

    PubMed Central

    Foster, Andrew; Kumar, Naresh

    2011-01-01

    This, the first systematic study, quantifies the health effects of air quality regulations in Delhi, which adopted radical measures to improve air quality, including, for example, the conversion of all commercial vehicles to compressed natural gas (CNG), and the closure of polluting industries in residential areas from 2000 to 2002. Air pollution data, collected at 113 sites (spread across Delhi and its neighboring areas) from July-December 2003, were used to compute exposure at the place of residence of 3,989 subjects. A socio-economic and respiratory health survey was administered in 1,576 households. This survey collected time-use, residence histories, demographic information, and direct measurements of lung function with subjects. The optimal interpolation methods were used to link air pollution and respiratory health data at the place of their residence. Resident histories, in combination with secondary data, were used to impute cumulative exposure prior to the air-quality interventions, and the effects of recent air quality measures on lung function were then evaluated. Three important findings emerge from the analysis. First, the interventions were associated with a significant improvement in respiratory health. Second, the effect of these interventions varied significantly by gender and income. Third, consistent with a causal interpretation of these results, effects were the strongest among those individuals who spend a disproportionate share of their time out-of-doors. PMID:21461142

  6. Hostility, Relationship Quality, and Health among African American Couples

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guyll, Max; Cutrona, Carolyn; Burzette, Rebecca; Russell, Daniel

    2010-01-01

    Objective: This study investigated the association between hostility and health and whether it is moderated by the quality of an individual's primary romantic relationship. Method: Longitudinal data were provided by 184 African Americans, including 166 women. Participants averaged 38 years old and were married or in long-term marriagelike…

  7. Health effects of air quality regulations in Delhi, India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, Andrew; Kumar, Naresh

    2011-03-01

    This, the first systematic study, quantifies the health effects of air quality regulations in Delhi, which adopted radical measures to improve air quality, including, for example, the conversion of all commercial vehicles to compressed natural gas (CNG), and the closure of polluting industries in residential areas from 2000 to 2002. Air pollution data, collected at 113 sites (spread across Delhi and its neighboring areas) from July-December 2003, were used to compute exposure at the place of residence of 3989 subjects. A socio-economic and respiratory health survey was administered in 1576 households. This survey collected time-use, residence histories, demographic information, and direct measurements of lung function with subjects. The optimal interpolation methods were used to link air pollution and respiratory health data at the place of their residence. Resident histories, in combination with secondary data, were used to impute cumulative exposure prior to the air-quality interventions, and the effects of recent air quality measures on lung function were then evaluated. Three important findings emerge from the analysis. First, the interventions were associated with a significant improvement in respiratory health. Second, the effect of these interventions varied significantly by gender and income. Third, consistent with a causal interpretation of these results, effects were the strongest among those individuals who spend a disproportionate share of their time out-of-doors.

  8. Impact of Medicaid Reimbursement on Mental Health Quality Indicators

    PubMed Central

    Bellows, Nicole M; Halpin, Helen A

    2008-01-01

    Objective To examine the relationship between the use of the Minimum Data Set (MDS) for determining Medicaid reimbursement to nursing facilities and the MDS Quality Indicators examining nursing facility residents' mental health. Data Sources The 2004 National MDS facility Quality Indicator reports served as the dependent variables. Explanatory variables were based on the 2004 Online Survey Certification and Reporting system (OSCAR) and an examination of existing reports, a review of the State Medicaid Plans, and State Medicaid personnel. Study Design Multilevel regression models were used to account for the hierarchical structure of the data. Data Collection MDS and OSCAR data were linked by facility identifiers and subsequently linked with state-level variables. Principal Findings The use of the MDS for determining Medicaid reimbursement was associated with higher (poorer) quality indicator values for all four mental health quality indicators examined. This effect was not found in four comparison quality indicators. Conclusions The findings indicate that documentation of mental health symptoms may be influenced by economic incentives. Policy makers should be cautioned from using these measures as the basis for decision making, such as with pay-for-performance initiatives. PMID:18370968

  9. Challenges in Data Quality Assurance in Pervasive Health Monitoring Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sriram, Janani; Shin, Minho; Kotz, David; Rajan, Anand; Sastry, Manoj; Yarvis, Mark

    Wearable, portable, and implantable medical sensors have ushered in a new paradigm for healthcare in which patients can take greater responsibility and caregivers can make well-informed, timely decisions. Health-monitoring systems built on such sensors have huge potential benefit to the quality of healthcare and quality of life for many people, such as patients with chronic medical conditions (such as blood-sugar sensors for diabetics), people seeking to change unhealthy behavior (such as losing weight or quitting smoking), or athletes wishing to monitor their condition and performance. To be effective, however, these systems must provide assurances about the quality of the sensor data. The sensors must be applied to the patient by a human, and the sensor data may be transported across multiple networks and devices before it is presented to the medical team. While no system can guarantee data quality, we anticipate that it will help for the system to annotate data with some measure of confidence. In this paper, we take a deeper look at potential health-monitoring usage scenarios and highlight research challenges required to ensure and assess quality of sensor data in health-monitoring systems.

  10. Quality and Safety in Health Care, Part VI: More on Crossing the Quality Chasm.

    PubMed

    Harolds, Jay A

    2016-01-01

    One of the most important aspects of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) Crossing the Quality Chasm. A New Health System for the 21st Century report (Chasm report) was that 6 major aims for US health care were set forth. In addition, the report indicated that health care in the United States care should be redesigned in accordance with 10 enumerated rules. There were other recommendations as well, to try to bridge the huge gap between the health care many people in the United States receive and what they should receive. PMID:26447385

  11. Water, water quality and health (Chapter 3 in Book entitled: Environmental Tracking for Public Health Surveillance).

    EPA Science Inventory

    This chapter identifies the role environmental tracking plays in identifying public health water hazard and water quality issues. It outlines public health issues to be examined and provides an integrated overview of water and diseases by combining knowledge of the hydrological ...

  12. Adult Day Health Center Participation and Health-Related Quality of Life

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schmitt, Eva M.; Sands, Laura P.; Weiss, Sara; Dowling, Glenna; Covinsky, Kenneth

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess the association between Adult Day Health Center (ADHC) participation and health-related quality of life. Design and Methods: Case-controlled prospective study utilizing the Medical Outcomes Survey Form 36 (SF-36) to compare newly enrolled participants from 16 ADHC programs with comparable…

  13. Identifying Key Hospital Service Quality Factors in Online Health Communities

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Yuchul; Hur, Cinyoung; Jung, Dain

    2015-01-01

    Background The volume of health-related user-created content, especially hospital-related questions and answers in online health communities, has rapidly increased. Patients and caregivers participate in online community activities to share their experiences, exchange information, and ask about recommended or discredited hospitals. However, there is little research on how to identify hospital service quality automatically from the online communities. In the past, in-depth analysis of hospitals has used random sampling surveys. However, such surveys are becoming impractical owing to the rapidly increasing volume of online data and the diverse analysis requirements of related stakeholders. Objective As a solution for utilizing large-scale health-related information, we propose a novel approach to identify hospital service quality factors and overtime trends automatically from online health communities, especially hospital-related questions and answers. Methods We defined social media–based key quality factors for hospitals. In addition, we developed text mining techniques to detect such factors that frequently occur in online health communities. After detecting these factors that represent qualitative aspects of hospitals, we applied a sentiment analysis to recognize the types of recommendations in messages posted within online health communities. Korea’s two biggest online portals were used to test the effectiveness of detection of social media–based key quality factors for hospitals. Results To evaluate the proposed text mining techniques, we performed manual evaluations on the extraction and classification results, such as hospital name, service quality factors, and recommendation types using a random sample of messages (ie, 5.44% (9450/173,748) of the total messages). Service quality factor detection and hospital name extraction achieved average F1 scores of 91% and 78%, respectively. In terms of recommendation classification, performance (ie, precision) is

  14. Quality at the centre of universal health coverage.

    PubMed

    Sobel, Howard L; Huntington, Dale; Temmerman, Marleen

    2016-05-01

    The last decade of the MDG era witnessed substantial focus on reaching the bottom economic quintiles in low and middle income countries. However, the inordinate focus on reducing financial risk burden and increasing coverage without sufficient focus on expanding quality of services may account for slow progress of the MDGs in many countries. Human Resources for Health underlie quality and service delivery improvements, yet remains under-addressed in many national strategies to achieve Universal Health Coverage. Without adequate investments in improving and expanding health professional education, making and sustaining gains will be unlikely. The transition from the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), with exciting new financing initiatives such as the Global Financing Facility brings the potential to enact substantial gains in the quality of services delivered and upgrading human health resources. This focus should ensure effective methodologies to improve health worker competencies and change practice are employed and ineffective and harmful ones eliminated (including undue influence of commercial interests). PMID:26420642

  15. Public Reporting of Quality Information on Medicaid Health Plans

    PubMed Central

    Felt-Lisk, Suzanne; Barrett, Allison; Nyman, Rebecca

    2007-01-01

    Transparency through public reporting of quality data is key to achieving the Institute of Medicine's (IOM) vision for 21st century health care. This article reviews the status of States' voluntary public reporting of Medicaid managed care (MMC) quality data, and analyzes these data. Twenty-one States, including 17 of the 20 largest managed care States, have made plan-level data publicly available online, although the data are sometimes thin, with few measures reported, hard-to-access, and old. We conclude that CMS could better leverage the power of public reporting for quality improvement (QI) by increasing the visibility of health plan employer data and information set (HEDIS®) data that States already collect. PMID:17645152

  16. Space Station Environmental Health System water quality monitoring

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vincze, Johanna E.; Sauer, Richard L.

    1990-01-01

    One of the unique aspects of the Space Station is that it will be a totally encapsulated environment and the air and water supplies will be reclaimed for reuse. The Environmental Health System, a subsystem of CHeCS (Crew Health Care System), must monitor the air and water on board the Space Station Freedom to verify that the quality is adequate for crew safety. Specifically, the Water Quality Subsystem will analyze the potable and hygiene water supplies regularly for organic, inorganic, particulate, and microbial contamination. The equipment selected to perform these analyses will be commercially available instruments which will be converted for use on board the Space Station Freedom. Therefore, the commercial hardware will be analyzed to identify the gravity dependent functions and modified to eliminate them. The selection, analysis, and conversion of the off-the-shelf equipment for monitoring the Space Station reclaimed water creates a challenging project for the Water Quality engineers and scientists.

  17. Quality assurance in the health care system in The Netherlands.

    PubMed

    Reerink, E

    1987-03-01

    Thirteen years of activities in the field of quality assurance in the health care field in The Netherlands bring to life the many ups and some downs in this intriguing endeavour. Back in 1974, quality assurance was in the minds of few individuals and in the hands of nobody. This has changed dramatically: not only are there now functioning programmes carried out by knowledgeable and dedicated health care providers, there is legislation that suits the convenience of quality assurance, and a firm delineation of responsibilities. At the same time there is flexibility which enables the various actors to interpret their roles according to their capabilities and tastes. The various contributions in this issue are part of this national development. PMID:3566639

  18. Adapting and using quality management methods to improve health promotion.

    PubMed

    Becker, Craig M; Glascoff, Mary A; Felts, William Michael; Kent, Christopher

    2015-01-01

    Although the western world is the most technologically advanced civilization to date, it is also the most addicted, obese, medicated, and in-debt adult population in history. Experts had predicted that the 21st century would be a time of better health and prosperity. Although wealth has increased, our quest to quell health problems using a pathogenic approach without understanding the interconnectedness of everyone and everything has damaged personal and planetary health. While current efforts help identify and eliminate causes of problems, they do not facilitate the creation of health and well-being as would be done with a salutogenic approach. Sociologist Aaron Antonovsky coined the term salutogenesis in 1979. It is derived from salus, which is Latin for health, and genesis, meaning to give birth. Salutogenesis, the study of the origins and creation of health, provides a method to identify an interconnected way to enhance well-being. Salutogenesis provides a framework for a method of practice to improve health promotion efforts. This article illustrates how quality management methods can be used to guide health promotion efforts focused on improving health beyond the absence of disease. PMID:25777291

  19. Impacts of Climate Policy on Regional Air Quality, Health, and Air Quality Regulatory Procedures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thompson, T. M.; Selin, N. E.

    2011-12-01

    Both the changing climate, and the policy implemented to address climate change can impact regional air quality. We evaluate the impacts of potential selected climate policies on modeled regional air quality with respect to national pollution standards, human health and the sensitivity of health uncertainty ranges. To assess changes in air quality due to climate policy, we couple output from a regional computable general equilibrium economic model (the US Regional Energy Policy [USREP] model), with a regional air quality model (the Comprehensive Air Quality Model with Extensions [CAMx]). USREP uses economic variables to determine how potential future U.S. climate policy would change emissions of regional pollutants (CO, VOC, NOx, SO2, NH3, black carbon, and organic carbon) from ten emissions-heavy sectors of the economy (electricity, coal, gas, crude oil, refined oil, energy intensive industry, other industry, service, agriculture, and transportation [light duty and heavy duty]). Changes in emissions are then modeled using CAMx to determine the impact on air quality in several cities in the Northeast US. We first calculate the impact of climate policy by using regulatory procedures used to show attainment with National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone and particulate matter. Building on previous work, we compare those results with the calculated results and uncertainties associated with human health impacts due to climate policy. This work addresses a potential disconnect between NAAQS regulatory procedures and the cost/benefit analysis required for and by the Clean Air Act.

  20. Agents for change: nonphysician medical providers and health care quality.

    PubMed

    Boucher, Nathan A; Mcmillen, Marvin A; Gould, James S

    2015-01-01

    Quality medical care is a clinical and public health imperative, but defining quality and achieving improved, measureable outcomes are extremely complex challenges. Adherence to best practice invariably improves outcomes. Nonphysician medical providers (NPMPs), such as physician assistants and advanced practice nurses (eg, nurse practitioners, advanced practice registered nurses, certified registered nurse anesthetists, and certified nurse midwives), may be the first caregivers to encounter the patient and can act as agents for change for an organization's quality-improvement mandate. NPMPs are well positioned to both initiate and ensure optimal adherence to best practices and care processes from the moment of initial contact because they have robust clinical training and are integral to trainee/staff education and the timely delivery of care. The health care quality aspects that the practicing NPMP can affect are objective, appreciative, and perceptive. As bedside practitioners and participants in the administrative and team process, NPMPs can fine-tune care delivery, avoiding the problem areas defined by the Institute of Medicine: misuse, overuse, and underuse of care. This commentary explores how NPMPs can affect quality by 1) supporting best practices through the promotion of guidelines and protocols, and 2) playing active, if not leadership, roles in patient engagement and organizational quality-improvement efforts. PMID:25663213

  1. How Insurers Competed in the Affordable Care Act's First Year.

    PubMed

    Swartz, Katherine; Hall, Mark A; Jost, Timothy S

    2015-06-01

    Prior to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), most states' individual health insurance markets were dominated by one or two insurance carriers that had little incentive to compete by providing efficient services. Instead, they competed mainly by screening and selecting people based on their risk of incurring high medical costs. One of the ACA's goals is to encourage carriers to participate in the health insurance marketplaces and to shift the focus from competing based on risk selection to processes that increase consumer value, like improving efficiency of services and quality of care. Focusing on six states--Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Maryland, Montana, and Texas--this brief looks at how carriers are competing in the new marketplaces, namely through cost-sharing and composition of provider networks. PMID:26159009

  2. Developing a risk-based air quality health index

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, Tze Wai; Tam, Wilson Wai San; Yu, Ignatius Tak Sun; Lau, Alexis Kai Hon; Pang, Sik Wing; Wong, Andromeda H. S.

    2013-09-01

    We developed a risk-based, multi-pollutant air quality health index (AQHI) reporting system in Hong Kong, based on the Canadian approach. We performed time series studies to obtain the relative risks of hospital admissions for respiratory and cardiovascular diseases associated with four air pollutants: sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, and particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter less than 10 μm (PM10). We then calculated the sum of excess risks of the hospital admissions associated with these air pollutants. The cut-off points of the summed excess risk, for the issuance of different health warnings, were based on the concentrations of these pollutants recommended as short-term Air Quality Guidelines by the World Health Organization. The excess risks were adjusted downwards for young children and the elderly. Health risk was grouped into five categories and sub-divided into eleven bands, with equal increments in excess risk from band 1 up to band 10 (the 11th band is 'band 10+'). We developed health warning messages for the general public, including at-risk groups: young children, the elderly, and people with pre-existing cardiac or respiratory diseases. The new system addressed two major shortcomings of the current standard-based system; namely, the time lag between a sudden rise in air pollutant concentrations and the issue of a health warning, and the reliance on one dominant pollutant to calculate the index. Hence, the AQHI represents an improvement over Hong Kong's existing air pollution index.

  3. Quality of Life and Health-Related Quality of Life of Adolescents with Cerebral Palsy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosenbaum, Peter L.; Livingston, Michael H.; Palisano, Robert J.; Galuppi, Barbara E.; Russell, Dianne J.

    2007-01-01

    This study assessed quality of life (QOL) and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of 203 adolescents with cerebral palsy (111 males, 92 females; mean age 16y [SD 1y 9mo]). Participants were classified using the Gross Motor Function Classification System (GMFCS), as Level I (n=60), Level II (n=33), Level III (n=28), Level IV (n=50), or Level V…

  4. Quality and Safety in Health Care, Part VII: Lower Costs and Higher Quality.

    PubMed

    Harolds, Jay A

    2016-02-01

    The Institute of Medicine report entitled The Health Care Imperative: Lowering Costs and Improving Outcomes discussed numerous ways to decrease costs in the health care system without decreasing quality. The use of evidence-based medicine, eliminating wasteful spending such as needlessly high administrative costs, having more preventive services, having a better reimbursement system that emphasized quality, developing a less fragmented and more efficient medical delivery system, having more transparency for patients on the outcomes of different providers, having greater health care literacy for patients, and eliminating fraud were some of the recommendations. The total savings from eliminating unnecessary health care costs was estimated to be over 3 quarters of a trillion dollars each year. PMID:26545019

  5. 42 CFR 480.141 - Disclosure of QIO interpretations on the quality of health care.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) QUALITY IMPROVEMENT ORGANIZATIONS ACQUISITION, PROTECTION, AND DISCLOSURE OF QUALITY IMPROVEMENT ORGANIZATION REVIEW INFORMATION Utilization and Quality Control Quality Improvement Organizations (QIOs) Disclosure of Confidential Information § 480.141 Disclosure...

  6. The Partnered Research Center for Quality Care: Developing Infrastructure to Support Community-partnered Participatory Research in Mental Health

    PubMed Central

    Lizaola, Elizabeth; Schraiber, Ron; Braslow, Joel; Kataoka, Sheryl; Springgate, Benjamin F.; Wells, Kenneth B.; Jones, Loretta

    2013-01-01

    Evidence-based programs have been shown to improve functioning and mental health outcomes, especially for vulnerable populations. However, these populations face numerous barriers to accessing care including lack of resources and stigma surrounding mental health issues. In order to improve mental health outcomes and reduce health disparities, it is essential to identify methods for reaching such populations with unmet need. A promising strategy for reducing barriers and improving access to care is Community Partnered Participatory Research (CPPR). Given the power of this methodology to transform the impact of research in resource-poor communities, we developed an NIMH-funded Center, the Partnered Research Center for Quality Care, to support partnerships in developing, implementing, and evaluating mental health services research and programs. Guided by a CPPR framework, center investigators, both community and academic, collaborated in all phases of research with the goal of establishing trust, building capacity, increasing buy-in, and improving the sustainability of interventions and programs. They engaged in two-way capacity-building, which afforded the opportunity for practical problems to be raised and innovative solutions to be developed. This article discusses the development and design of the Partnered Research Center for Quality Care and provides examples of partnerships that have been formed and the work that has been conducted as a result. PMID:22352082

  7. [Continuous nursing education to improve the quality of health care].

    PubMed

    Fumić, Nera; Marinović, Marin; Brajan, Dolores

    2014-10-01

    Health care and today's medical and technical achievements and approved standards of treatment provide comprehensive quality, safety and traceability of medical procedures respecting the principles of health protection. Continuous education improves the quality of nursing health care and increases the effectiveness of patient care, consequently maintaining and enhancing patient safety. Patient health problems impose the need of appropriate, planned and timely nursing care and treatment. In providing quality nursing care, attention is focused on the patient and his/her needs in order to maintain and increase their safety, satisfaction, independence and recovery or peaceful death, so the health and nursing practices must be systematized, planned and based on knowledge and experience. Health and nursing care of patients at risk of developing acute and chronic wounds or already suffering from some form of this imply preventive measures that are provided through patient education, motivation, monitoring, early recognition of risk factors and causes, and reducing or removing them through the prescribed necessary medical treatment which is safe depending on the patient health status. Except for preventive measures, nursing care of patients who already suffer from some form of acute or chronic wounds is focused on the care and treatment of damaged tissue by providing appropriate and timely diagnosis, timely and proper evaluation of the wound and patient general status, knowledge and understanding of the wide range of local, oral and parenteral therapy and treatment, aiming to increase patient safety by preventing progression of the patient general condition and local wound status and reducing the possibility of developing infection or other complications of the underlying disease. In the overall patient management, through nursing process, medical interventions are implemented and aimed to maintain and optimize health status, prevent complications of existing diseases and

  8. Oral health related quality of life in diabetic patients.

    PubMed

    Sadeghi, Rokhsareh; Taleghani, Ferial; Farhadi, Sareh

    2014-01-01

    Background and aims. Diabetic patients display an increased risk of oral disorders, and oral health related quality of life (OHRQL) might affect their management and treatment modalities. The aim of the present study was to determine OHRQL and associated parameters in patients with diabetes. Materials and methods. In this study two hundred patients were recruited from the diabetes clinic in Mustafa Khomeini Hospital in Tehran, Iran. OHRQL was assessed using Oral Health Impact Profile Questionnaire (OHIP-20). Also, another questionnaire was designed which contained questions regarding participants' knowledge about oral complications of diabetes and oral health behavior. OHRQL was categorized as low and good. Data were analyzed using logistic regression at P = 0.05. Results. Of the diabetic patients assessed, 77.5% were in good and 22.5% were in low categories of OHRQL. This quality was significantly associated with age (OR = 4.03, 95% CI = 1.63-11.29), knowledge about diabetes oral complications (OR = 18.17 95% CI = 4.42-158.6), educational level (OR = 26.31 95% CI = 4.2-1080.3), referred for dental visit by physician (OR = 3.16 95% CI = 1.48-6.69), frequency of brushing (OR = 10.29 95% CI = 3.96-31.2) and length of time diagnosed with diabetes (OR = 6.21 95% CI = 2.86-13.63). Conclusion. Oral health related quality of life was not negatively affected by diabetes mellitus in the assessed sample. PMID:25587385

  9. Partnering health disparities research with quality improvement science in pediatrics.

    PubMed

    Lion, K Casey; Raphael, Jean L

    2015-02-01

    Disparities in pediatric health care quality are well described in the literature, yet practical approaches to decreasing them remain elusive. Quality improvement (QI) approaches are appealing for addressing disparities because they offer a set of strategies by which to target modifiable aspects of care delivery and a method for tailoring or changing an intervention over time based on data monitoring. However, few examples in the literature exist of QI interventions successfully decreasing disparities, particularly in pediatrics, due to well-described challenges in developing, implementing, and studying QI with vulnerable populations or in underresourced settings. In addition, QI interventions aimed at improving quality overall may not improve disparities, and in some cases, may worsen them if there is greater uptake or effectiveness of the intervention among the population with better outcomes at baseline. In this article, the authors review some of the challenges faced by researchers and frontline clinicians seeking to use QI to address health disparities and propose an agenda for moving the field forward. Specifically, they propose that those designing and implementing disparities-focused QI interventions reconsider comparator groups, use more rigorous evaluation methods, carefully consider the evidence for particular interventions and the context in which they were developed, directly engage the social determinants of health, and leverage community resources to build collaborative networks and engage community members. Ultimately, new partnerships between communities, providers serving vulnerable populations, and QI researchers will be required for QI interventions to achieve their potential related to health care disparity reduction. PMID:25560436

  10. Social networks, stress and health-related quality of life.

    PubMed

    Achat, H; Kawachi, I; Levine, S; Berkey, C; Coakley, E; Colditz, G

    1998-12-01

    Although evidence suggests that social networks reduce the risk of mortality and are negatively associated with severe mental disability, little is known about their relationship to everyday functioning and health-related quality of life (HRQoL). In addition, the importance of social networks in the presence of chronic stress remains unclear. We examined the association between social networks and aspects of mental functioning (mental health, vitality and role-emotional functioning) and the relationship between social networks and mental functioning in the presence of stressors. Multiple linear and logistic regression models were used to examine data in 47,912 middle-aged and older healthy women. The Medical Outcomes Study Shortform Health Survey measured dimensions of quality of life. We observed strong associations between levels of social networks and multivariate-adjusted quality of life scores, particularly in potentially high stress situations. Compared to the most socially integrated, women who were socially isolated had reductions in mental health and vitality scores of 6.5 and 7.4 points, respectively and a 60% increased risk of limitation in role-emotional functioning. Social networks are positively associated with mental functioning in women. This association is strongest for women reporting high levels of home and work stressors. PMID:10097622

  11. Exploring Social Quality and Community Health Outcomes: An Ecological Model.

    PubMed

    Jung, Minsoo

    2015-01-01

    Quality of life is widely used as a measure of individual well-being in developed countries. Social quality (SQ), however, describes how favorable the socioenvironmental components are that impact the life chance of an individual. Despite the associations between SQ, including institutional capacity and citizen capacity, and other community indicators, the impact of SQ on community health status has not been fully examined. This study investigated the interrelationships among institutional capacity, citizen capacity, and their associations with community-level health indicators such as mortality and suicide among 230 local governments in South Korea. Under the principles of conceptual suitability, clarity, reliability, consistency, changeability, and comparability, a total of 81 SQ indicators were collected, and 19 indicators of the 81 indicators were selected. The 19 indicators were transformed by the imputation of missing values, standardization, and geographic information system transformation. It was found that the health outcome of local government was superior as social welfare, political participation, and education were higher. According to the result of the regression analysis based on the regional type, social welfare had the most influence on the health level of local government in both metropolises and small-/medium-sized cities. In addition, education and political participation had a positive effect on the health indicator of local metropolis government. However, SQ indicators did not have any meaningful influence at the county level. Therefore, small- and medium-sized cities need to promote the collective health of the local government through improving social welfare, and metropolises need to consider the complex relationship among other indicators while increasing the level of social welfare and education. Meanwhile, counties need to develop health indicators that reflect aged population characteristics and social environment of rural areas

  12. 77 FR 42738 - Request for Information on Quality Measurement Enabled by Health IT

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-07-20

    ... Enabled by Health IT AGENCY: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), Health and Human Services... information technology (IT) system developers, including vendors; payers, quality measure developers, end... regarding quality measurement enabled by health IT. Quality measurement--the assessment of the...

  13. Health Information on Internet: Quality, Importance, and Popularity of Persian Health Websites

    PubMed Central

    Samadbeik, Mahnaz; Ahmadi, Maryam; Mohammadi, Ali; Mohseni Saravi, Beniamin

    2014-01-01

    Background: The Internet has provided great opportunities for disseminating both accurate and inaccurate health information. Therefore, the quality of information is considered as a widespread concern affecting the human life. Despite the increasingly substantial growth in the number of users, Persian health websites and the proportion of internet-using patients, little is known about the quality of Persian medical and health websites. Objectives: The current study aimed to first assess the quality, popularity and importance of websites providing Persian health-related information, and second to evaluate the correlation of the popularity and importance ranking with quality score on the Internet. Materials and Methods: The sample websites were identified by entering the health-related keywords into four most popular search engines of Iranian users based on the Alexa ranking at the time of study. Each selected website was assessed using three qualified tools including the Bomba and Land Index, Google PageRank and the Alexa ranking. Results: The evaluated sites characteristics (ownership structure, database, scope and objective) really did not have an effect on the Alexa traffic global rank, Alexa traffic rank in Iran, Google PageRank and Bomba total score. Most websites (78.9 percent, n = 56) were in the moderate category (8 ≤ x ≤ 11.99) based on their quality levels. There was no statistically significant association between Google PageRank with Bomba index variables and Alexa traffic global rank (P > 0.05). Conclusions: The Persian health websites had better Bomba quality scores in availability and usability guidelines as compared to other guidelines. The Google PageRank did not properly reflect the real quality of evaluated websites and Internet users seeking online health information should not merely rely on it for any kind of prejudgment regarding Persian health websites. However, they can use Iran Alexa rank as a primary filtering tool of these websites

  14. The business case for health-care quality improvement.

    PubMed

    Swensen, Stephen J; Dilling, James A; Mc Carty, Patrick M; Bolton, Jeffrey W; Harper, Charles M

    2013-03-01

    The business case for health-care quality improvement is presented. We contend that investment in process improvement is aligned with patients' interests, the organization's reputation, and the engagement of their workforce. Four groups benefit directly from quality improvement: patients, providers, insurers, and employers. There is ample opportunity, even in today's predominantly pay-for-volume (that is, evolving toward value-based purchasing) insurance system, for providers to deliver care that is in the best interest of the patient while improving their financial performance. PMID:23429226

  15. Quality-based financial incentives in health care: can we improve quality by paying for it?

    PubMed

    Conrad, Douglas A; Perry, Lisa

    2009-01-01

    This article asks whether financial incentives can improve the quality of health care. A conceptual framework drawn from microeconomics, agency theory, behavioral economics, and cognitive psychology motivates a set of propositions about incentive effects on clinical quality. These propositions are evaluated through a synthesis of extant peer-reviewed empirical evidence. Comprehensive financial incentives--balancing rewards and penalties; blending structure, process, and outcome measures; emphasizing continuous, absolute performance standards; tailoring the size of incremental rewards to increasing marginal costs of quality improvement; and assuring certainty, frequency, and sustainability of incentive payoffs--offer the prospect of significantly enhancing quality beyond the modest impacts of prevailing pay-for-performance (P4P) programs. Such organizational innovations as the primary care medical home and accountable health care organizations are expected to catalyze more powerful quality incentive models: risk- and quality-adjusted capitation, episode of care payments, and enhanced fee-for-service payments for quality dimensions (e.g., prevention) most amenable to piece-rate delivery. PMID:19296779

  16. Total quality management as a health care corporate strategy.

    PubMed

    Johnson, J A; Omachonu, V K

    1995-01-01

    Total quality management (TQM) must become a part of corporate strategy if it is to become a way of life in health care. TQM should be understood in the context of a cultural transformation. The greatest challenge for top management is to create an organization in which every employee, department and function is linked inextricably to the organization's mission and vision. One of the key benefits of TQM is the use of teams to work on and achieve organizational objectives. Health care managers must understand motivation in order to carry the workforce with them to attain those objectives. PMID:10165402

  17. Health Related Quality of Life and Influencing Factors among Welders

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Jingxiang; Liu, Wuzhong; Zhu, Jun; Weng, Wei; Xu, Jiaming; Ai, Zisheng

    2014-01-01

    Background Occupational exposure to welding fumes is a serious occupational health problem all over the world. Welders are exposed to many occupational hazards; these hazards might cause some occupational diseases. The aim of the study was to assess the health related quality of life (HRQL) of electric welders in Shanghai China and explore influencing factors to HRQL of welders. Methods 301 male welders (without pneumoconiosis) and 305 non-dust male workers in Shanghai were enrolled in this study. Short Form-36 (SF-36) health survey questionnaires were applied in this cross-sectional study. Socio-demographic, working and health factors were also collected. Multiple stepwise regress analysis was used to identify significant factors related to the eight dimension scores. Results Six dimensions including role-physical (RP), bodily pain (BP), general health (GH), validity (VT), social function (SF), and mental health (MH) were significantly worse in welders compared to non-dust workers. Multiple stepwise regress analysis results show that native place, monthly income, quantity of children, drinking, sleep time, welding type, use of personal protective equipment (PPE), great events in life, and some symptoms including dizziness, discomfort of cervical vertebra, low back pain, cough and insomnia may be influencing factors for HRQL of welders. Among these factors, only sleep time and the use of PPE were salutary. Conclusions Some dimensions of HRQL of these welders have been affected. Enterprises which employ welders should take measures to protect the health of these people and improve their HRQL. PMID:25048102

  18. Delivering affordable cancer care in high-income countries.

    PubMed

    Sullivan, Richard; Peppercorn, Jeffrey; Sikora, Karol; Zalcberg, John; Meropol, Neal J; Amir, Eitan; Khayat, David; Boyle, Peter; Autier, Philippe; Tannock, Ian F; Fojo, Tito; Siderov, Jim; Williamson, Steve; Camporesi, Silvia; McVie, J Gordon; Purushotham, Arnie D; Naredi, Peter; Eggermont, Alexander; Brennan, Murray F; Steinberg, Michael L; De Ridder, Mark; McCloskey, Susan A; Verellen, Dirk; Roberts, Terence; Storme, Guy; Hicks, Rodney J; Ell, Peter J; Hirsch, Bradford R; Carbone, David P; Schulman, Kevin A; Catchpole, Paul; Taylor, David; Geissler, Jan; Brinker, Nancy G; Meltzer, David; Kerr, David; Aapro, Matti

    2011-09-01

    The burden of cancer is growing, and the disease is becoming a major economic expenditure for all developed countries. In 2008, the worldwide cost of cancer due to premature death and disability (not including direct medical costs) was estimated to be US$895 billion. This is not simply due to an increase in absolute numbers, but also the rate of increase of expenditure on cancer. What are the drivers and solutions to the so-called cancer-cost curve in developed countries? How are we going to afford to deliver high quality and equitable care? Here, expert opinion from health-care professionals, policy makers, and cancer survivors has been gathered to address the barriers and solutions to delivering affordable cancer care. Although many of the drivers and themes are specific to a particular field-eg, the huge development costs for cancer medicines-there is strong concordance running through each contribution. Several drivers of cost, such as over-use, rapid expansion, and shortening life cycles of cancer technologies (such as medicines and imaging modalities), and the lack of suitable clinical research and integrated health economic studies, have converged with more defensive medical practice, a less informed regulatory system, a lack of evidence-based sociopolitical debate, and a declining degree of fairness for all patients with cancer. Urgent solutions range from re-engineering of the macroeconomic basis of cancer costs (eg, value-based approaches to bend the cost curve and allow cost-saving technologies), greater education of policy makers, and an informed and transparent regulatory system. A radical shift in cancer policy is also required. Political toleration of unfairness in access to affordable cancer treatment is unacceptable. The cancer profession and industry should take responsibility and not accept a substandard evidence base and an ethos of very small benefit at whatever cost; rather, we need delivery of fair prices and real value from new technologies

  19. Medicare and Medicaid programs; CY 2015 Home Health Prospective Payment System rate update; Home Health Quality Reporting Requirements; and survey and enforcement requirements for home health agencies. Final rule.

    PubMed

    2014-11-01

    This final rule updates Home Health Prospective Payment System (HH PPS) rates, including the national, standardized 60-day episode payment rates, the national per-visit rates, and the non-routine medical supply (NRS) conversion factor under the Medicare prospective payment system for home health agencies (HHAs), effective for episodes ending on or after January 1, 2015. As required by the Affordable Care Act, this rule implements the second year of the four-year phase-in of the rebasing adjustments to the HH PPS payment rates. This rule provides information on our efforts to monitor the potential impacts of the rebasing adjustments and the Affordable Care Act mandated face-to-face encounter requirement. This rule also implements: Changes to simplify the face-to-face encounter regulatory requirements; changes to the HH PPS case-mix weights; changes to the home health quality reporting program requirements; changes to simplify the therapy reassessment timeframes; a revision to the Speech-Language Pathology (SLP) personnel qualifications; minor technical regulations text changes; and limitations on the reviewability of the civil monetary penalty provisions. Finally, this rule also discusses Medicare coverage of insulin injections under the HH PPS, the delay in the implementation of the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-10-CM), and a HH value-based purchasing (HH VBP) model. PMID:25376056

  20. Health-related quality of life assessment in clinical practice.

    PubMed

    Meers, C; Singer, M A

    1996-01-01

    Assessment of biochemical responses to therapy is routine in the management of patients with end stage renal disease (ESRD). Assessment of health-related quality of life (HRQOL), however, is less common. Previous research indicates that HRQOL is a meaningful indicator that should be integrated into clinical practice. HRQOL is longitudinally evaluated in in-centre hemodialysis patients using the RAND 36-item Health Survey 1.0. Caregivers incorporate scores from this instrument into their assessment of patient functioning and well-being. HRQOL scores can be utilized to evaluate responses to changes in therapy, and to direct clinical decision-making, adding an important dimension to holistic, quality care for ESRD patients. PMID:8900807

  1. Health, Quality of Life and Population Density: A Preliminary Study on "Contextualized" Quality of Life

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fassio, Omar; Rollero, Chiara; De Piccoli, Norma

    2013-01-01

    Quality of life concerns individual (physical and psychological health), interpersonal (social relationships) and contextual (environment) aspects, which are both subjective and objective. In considering contextual characteristics, empirical findings have demonstrated that people's relation to their living environment is a key issue for their…

  2. State health agencies and quality improvement in perinatal care.

    PubMed

    Johnson, K A; Little, G A

    1999-01-01

    The origin of the federal-state partnership in Maternal and Child Health (MCH) can be traced from the Children's Bureau grants of 1912, through the Sheppard-Towner Act, to the creation of Title V and other programs of today that mandate planning, accountability, and systems development. In the past decade with the transformation of the health care system and the emergence of managed care, there has been a resurgence of interest in public, professional, and governmental interest in quality measurement and accountability. Regional perinatal systems have been implemented in all states with varying levels of involvement by state health agencies and the public sector. This historical framework discusses two primary themes: the decades of evolution in the federal-state partnership, and the emergence in the last three decades of perinatal regional system policy, and suggests that the structure of the federal-state partnership has encouraged state variation. A survey of state MCH programs was undertaken to clarify their operational and perceived role in promoting quality improvement in perinatal care. Data and information from the survey, along with five illustrative state case studies, demonstrate great variation in how individual state agencies function. State efforts in quality improvement, a process to make things better, have four arenas of activity: policy development and implementation, definition and measurement of quality, data collection and analysis, and communication to affect change. Few state health agencies (through their MCH programs and perinatal staff) are taking action in all four arenas. This analysis concludes that there are improvements MCH programs could implement without significant expansion in their authority or resources and points out that there is an opportunity for states to be more proactive as they have the legal authority and responsibility for assuring MCH outcomes. PMID:9917467

  3. [Physician-independent quality control of health services].

    PubMed

    Hess, Rainer

    2007-01-01

    Currently a physician-independent control of health services can only be managed by means of liability case law. Usually, claims are settled years after the service has been provided, based, though, on medical guidelines that have been established by the medical profession itself at the time of the provision of services. An essential factor in medical quality assurance (QA) is the involvement of the relevant physicians, which should be combined with external controls. Regarding quality in medicine, personal qualification will have to be distinguished from institutional quality and quality of healthcare, which should be ensured by internal and external QA. There is increasing pressure to publish QA results in an institution-related manner. However, the publication of results may lead to the unequal treatment of hospitals, as external QA includes only a limited number of indications (possible misjudgement of overall quality), and refers to different patient populations (no comparable treatment results). However, the publication of such outcome data will prevail in the long-term. The future vision of an external QA system comprises: 1. electronically based patient files and, derived thereof, pseudonymised data sets for QA; 2. IQWiG's participation in the definition of evidence-based indicators for quality assessment as well as the application of these indicators; 3. the full publication of results on an Internet platform. PMID:17711259

  4. Universal Health Insurance in India: Ensuring Equity, Efficiency, and Quality

    PubMed Central

    Prinja, Shankar; Kaur, Manmeet; Kumar, Rajesh

    2012-01-01

    Indian health system is characterized by a vast public health infrastructure which lies underutilized, and a largely unregulated private market which caters to greater need for curative treatment. High out-of-pocket (OOP) health expenditures poses barrier to access for healthcare. Among those who get hospitalized, nearly 25% are pushed below poverty line by catastrophic impact of OOP healthcare expenditure. Moreover, healthcare costs are spiraling due to epidemiologic, demographic, and social transition. Hence, the need for risk pooling is imperative. The present article applies economic theories to various possibilities for providing risk pooling mechanism with the objective of ensuring equity, efficiency, and quality care. Asymmetry of information leads to failure of actuarially administered private health insurance (PHI). Large proportion of informal sector labor in India's workforce prevents major upscaling of social health insurance (SHI). Community health insurance schemes are difficult to replicate on a large scale. We strongly recommend institutionalization of tax-funded Universal Health Insurance Scheme (UHIS), with complementary role of PHI. The contextual factors for development of UHIS are favorable. SHI schemes should be merged with UHIS. Benefit package of this scheme should include preventive and in-patient curative care to begin with, and gradually include out-patient care. State-specific priorities should be incorporated in benefit package. Application of such an insurance system besides being essential to the goals of an effective health system provides opportunity to regulate private market, negotiate costs, and plan health services efficiently. Purchaser-provider split provides an opportunity to strengthen public sector by allowing providers to compete. PMID:23112438

  5. Universal health insurance in India: ensuring equity, efficiency, and quality.

    PubMed

    Prinja, Shankar; Kaur, Manmeet; Kumar, Rajesh

    2012-07-01

    Indian health system is characterized by a vast public health infrastructure which lies underutilized, and a largely unregulated private market which caters to greater need for curative treatment. High out-of-pocket (OOP) health expenditures poses barrier to access for healthcare. Among those who get hospitalized, nearly 25% are pushed below poverty line by catastrophic impact of OOP healthcare expenditure. Moreover, healthcare costs are spiraling due to epidemiologic, demographic, and social transition. Hence, the need for risk pooling is imperative. The present article applies economic theories to various possibilities for providing risk pooling mechanism with the objective of ensuring equity, efficiency, and quality care. Asymmetry of information leads to failure of actuarially administered private health insurance (PHI). Large proportion of informal sector labor in India's workforce prevents major upscaling of social health insurance (SHI). Community health insurance schemes are difficult to replicate on a large scale. We strongly recommend institutionalization of tax-funded Universal Health Insurance Scheme (UHIS), with complementary role of PHI. The contextual factors for development of UHIS are favorable. SHI schemes should be merged with UHIS. Benefit package of this scheme should include preventive and in-patient curative care to begin with, and gradually include out-patient care. State-specific priorities should be incorporated in benefit package. Application of such an insurance system besides being essential to the goals of an effective health system provides opportunity to regulate private market, negotiate costs, and plan health services efficiently. Purchaser-provider split provides an opportunity to strengthen public sector by allowing providers to compete. PMID:23112438

  6. Improving health in the Arctic region through safe and affordable access to household running water and sewer services: an Arctic Council initiative.

    PubMed

    Hennessy, Thomas W; Bressler, Jonathan M

    2016-01-01

    Important health disparities have been documented among the peoples of the Arctic and subarctic, including those related to limited access to in-home improved drinking water and sanitation services. Although improving water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) has been a focus of the United Nations for decades, the Arctic region has received little attention in this regard. A growing body of evidence highlights inequalities across the region for the availability of in-home drinking WASH services and for health indicators associated with these services. In this review, we highlight relevant data and describe an initiative through the Arctic Council's Sustainable Development Working Group to characterize the extent of WASH services in Arctic nations, the related health indicators and climate-related vulnerabilities to WASH services. With this as a baseline, efforts to build collaborations across the Arctic will be undertaken to promote innovations that can extend the benefits of water and sanitation services to all residents. PMID:27132632

  7. Improving health in the Arctic region through safe and affordable access to household running water and sewer services: an Arctic Council initiative

    PubMed Central

    Hennessy, Thomas W.; Bressler, Jonathan M.

    2016-01-01

    Important health disparities have been documented among the peoples of the Arctic and subarctic, including those related to limited access to in-home improved drinking water and sanitation services. Although improving water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) has been a focus of the United Nations for decades, the Arctic region has received little attention in this regard. A growing body of evidence highlights inequalities across the region for the availability of in-home drinking WASH services and for health indicators associated with these services. In this review, we highlight relevant data and describe an initiative through the Arctic Council's Sustainable Development Working Group to characterize the extent of WASH services in Arctic nations, the related health indicators and climate-related vulnerabilities to WASH services. With this as a baseline, efforts to build collaborations across the Arctic will be undertaken to promote innovations that can extend the benefits of water and sanitation services to all residents. PMID:27132632

  8. Improving Quality of Emergency Care Through Integration of Mental Health.

    PubMed

    Okafor, Martha; Wrenn, Glenda; Ede, Victor; Wilson, Nana; Custer, William; Risby, Emile; Claeys, Michael; Shelp, Frank E; Atallah, Hany; Mattox, Gail; Satcher, David

    2016-04-01

    The goal of this study was to better integrate emergency medical and psychiatric care at a large urban public hospital, identify impact on quality improvement metrics, and reduce healthcare cost. A psychiatric fast track service was implemented as a quality improvement initiative. Data on disposition from the emergency department from January 2011 to May 2012 for patients impacted by the pilot were analyzed. 4329 patients from January 2011 to August 2011 (pre-intervention) were compared with 4867 patients from September 2011 to May 2012 (intervention). There was a trend of decline on overall quality metrics of time to triage and time from disposition to discharge. The trend analysis of the psychiatric length of stay and use of restraints showed significant reductions. Integrated emergency care models are evidence-based approach to ensuring that patients with mental health needs receive proper and efficient treatment. Results suggest that this may also improve overall emergency department's throughput. PMID:26711094

  9. [Health care research to improve the quality of health care provision for older people].

    PubMed

    Kuhlmey, A

    2011-08-01

    This article addresses the contribution that health care research can make to facilitating appropriate health care provision for older adults. First, the major risks in this age group are described. These include multiple illnesses, the increasing need for nursing care with age, but also the growing numbers of older adults with psychological disorders, primarily dementia. The second section of the article presents a critical assessment of the current health care situation in light of the risks identified. On this basis, the third section specifies the areas of health care research that can contribute to improving the quality of the health care provision for this population. The article is based on a presentation made by the author at the 2010 Berlin Talks on Social Medicine: "The New Old--Health Care Research for a Changed Society." PMID:21800238

  10. Diabetes and the Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Schade, David S.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The Affordable Care Act—“Obamacare”—is the most important federal medical legislation to be enacted since Medicare. Although the goal of the Affordable Care Act is to improve healthcare coverage, access, and quality for all Americans, people with diabetes are especially poised to benefit from the comprehensive reforms included in the act. Signed into law in 2010, this massive legislation will slowly be enacted over the next 10 years. In the making for at least a decade, it will affect every person in the United States, either directly or indirectly. In this review, we discuss the major changes in healthcare that will take place in the next several years, including (1) who needs to purchase insurance on the Web-based exchange, (2) the cost to individuals and the rebates that they may expect, (3) the rules and regulations for purchasing insurance, (4) the characteristics of the different “metallic” insurance plans that are available, and (5) the states that have agreed to participate. With both tables and figures, we have tried to make the Affordable Care Act both understandable and appreciated. The goal of this comprehensive review is to highlight aspects of the Affordable Care Act that are of importance to practitioners who care for people with diabetes by discussing both the positive and the potentially negative aspects of the program as they relate to diabetes care. PMID:24927108

  11. Local leadership and the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Williams, Stephen L; Nichols, Beverly L; Barton, M Katherine; De LaCruz, Maria; Hernandez, Benjamin

    2015-01-01

    Local health departments are in key positions to lead in the education and implementation efforts to advance the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The first enrollment period is over, but the efforts to enroll the uninsured and advocate for expansion of Medicaid in the states that have not yet taken on this expansion will continue for years to come. Political climates may be unsupportive, but some actions may still be possible. PMID:25423062

  12. The Affordable Care Act and emergency care.

    PubMed

    McClelland, Mark; Asplin, Brent; Epstein, Stephen K; Kocher, Keith Eric; Pilgrim, Randy; Pines, Jesse; Rabin, Elaine Judith; Rathlev, Niels Kumar

    2014-10-01

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) will have far-reaching effects on the way health care is designed and delivered. Several elements of the ACA will directly affect both demand for ED care and expectations for its role in providing coordinated care. Hospitals will need to employ strategies to reduce ED crowding as the ACA expands insurance coverage. Discussions between EDs and primary care physicians about their respective roles providing acute unscheduled care would promote the goals of the ACA. PMID:25121814

  13. Health benefits of improving air quality in Taiyuan, China.

    PubMed

    Tang, Deliang; Wang, Cuicui; Nie, Jiesheng; Chen, Renjie; Niu, Qiao; Kan, Haidong; Chen, Bingheng; Perera, Frederica

    2014-12-01

    Since 2000, the government in Shanxi province has mounted several initiatives and mandated factory shutdowns with the goal of reducing coal burning emissions and the environmental impacts of industrialization. We estimated the health benefits associated with air quality improvement from 2001 to 2010 in Taiyuan, Shanxi Province, using disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) and monetized the health benefits using value of statistical life (VOSL). Data were collected on annual average concentrations of particulate matter less than 10 μm in aerodynamic diameter (PM10) and relevant health outcomes in Taiyuan from 2001 to 2010. Selected exposure-response functions were used to calculate the cases of death or disease attributable to PM10 annually over a 10-year period. These were summed to calculate the DALYs lost and their monetary value associated with PM10 each year between 2001 and 2010. Air quality improvement from 2001 to 2010 was estimated to have prevented 2810 premature deaths, 951 new cases of chronic bronchitis, 141,457 cases of outpatient visits, 969 cases of emergency-room visits and 31,810 cases of hospital admissions. The DALYs (VOSL) decreased by 56.92% (52.68%) from 52,937 (7274 million Yuan) in 2001 to 22,807 (3442 million Yuan) in 2010. Premature deaths accounted for almost 95% of the total DALYs. Our analysis demonstrates that air pollution abatement during the last decade in Taiyuan has generated substantial health benefits. PMID:25168129

  14. New metrics of affordable nutrition: which vegetables provide most nutrients for least cost?

    PubMed

    Drewnowski, Adam

    2013-09-01

    Measuring food prices per gram, rather than per calorie, is one way to make healthful vegetables appear less expensive. However, a better measure of affordability would take the nutrient content of vegetables into account. This study, based on analyses of US Department of Agriculture datasets, aimed to identify which vegetables, including juices and soups, provided the most nutrients per unit cost. Nutrient density was measured using the Nutrient Rich Foods (NRF) index, based on nine nutrients to encourage: protein; fiber; vitamins A, C, and E; calcium; iron; magnesium; and potassium; and on three nutrients to limit: saturated fat, added sugar, and sodium. Food cost in dollars was calculated per 100 g, per 100 kcal, per serving, and per nutrient content. One-way analyses of variance with post hoc tests were used to determine statistical significance. Results showed that tomato juices and tomato soups, dark green leafy and nonleafy vegetables, and deep yellow vegetables, including sweet potatoes, had the highest NRF scores overall. Highest NRF scores per dollar were obtained for sweet potatoes, white potatoes, tomato juices and tomato soups, carrots, and broccoli. Tomato sauces, raw tomatoes, and potato chips were eaten more frequently than were many other vegetables that were both more affordable and more nutrient-rich. These new measures of affordable nutrition can help foodservice and health professionals identify those vegetables that provide the highest nutrient density per unit cost. Processed vegetables, including soups and juices, can contribute to the quality and the affordability of the diet. PMID:23714199

  15. Affordable College Textbook Act

    THOMAS, 113th Congress

    Sen. Durbin, Richard [D-IL

    2013-11-14

    11/14/2013 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. (text of measure as introduced: CR S8051-8052) (All Actions) Tracker: This bill has the status IntroducedHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  16. Two-Year Impact of the Alternative Quality Contract on Pediatric Health Care Quality and Spending

    PubMed Central

    Song, Zirui; Chernew, Michael E.; Landon, Bruce E.; McNeil, Barbara J.; Safran, Dana G.; Schuster, Mark A.

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To examine the 2-year effect of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts’ global budget arrangement, the Alternative Quality Contract (AQC), on pediatric quality and spending for children with special health care needs (CSHCN) and non-CSHCN. METHODS: Using a difference-in-differences approach, we compared quality and spending trends for 126 975 unique 0- to 21-year-olds receiving care from AQC groups with 415 331 propensity-matched patients receiving care from non-AQC groups; 23% of enrollees were CSHCN. We compared quality and spending pre (2006–2008) and post (2009–2010) AQC implementation, adjusting analyses for age, gender, health risk score, and secular trends. Pediatric outcome measures included 4 preventive and 2 acute care measures tied to pay-for-performance (P4P), 3 asthma and 2 attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder quality measures not tied to P4P, and average total annual medical spending. RESULTS: During the first 2 years of the AQC, pediatric care quality tied to P4P increased by +1.8% for CSHCN (P < .001) and +1.2% for non-CSHCN (P < .001) for AQC versus non-AQC groups; quality measures not tied to P4P showed no significant changes. Average total annual medical spending was ∼5 times greater for CSHCN than non-CSHCN; there was no significant impact of the AQC on spending trends for children. CONCLUSIONS: During the first 2 years of the contract, the AQC had a small but significant positive effect on pediatric preventive care quality tied to P4P; this effect was greater for CSHCN than non-CSHCN. However, it did not significantly influence (positively or negatively) CSHCN measures not tied to P4P or affect per capita spending for either group. PMID:24366988

  17. [Evaluation auditing of the quality of health care in accreditation of health facilities].

    PubMed

    Paim, Chennyfer da Rosa Paino; Zucchi, Paola

    2011-01-01

    This article shows how many health insurance companies operating in the Greater São Paulo have been performing auditing of the quality of their health care services, professionals, and which criteria are being employed to do so. Because of the legislation decreeing that health insurance companies have legal co-responsibility for the health care services and National Health Agency control the health services National Health Agency, auditing evaluations have been implemented since then. The survey was based on electronic forms e-mailed to all health insurance companies operating in the Greater São Paulo. The sample consisted of 125 health insurance companies; 29 confirmed that had monitoring and evaluation processes; 26 performed auditing of their services regularly; from those, 20 used some type of form or protocol for technical visits; all evaluation physical and administrative structure and 22 included functional structure. Regarding the professionals audited 21 were nurses, 13 administrative assistants; 04 managers and 02 doctors. Regarding criteria for accreditation the following were highlighted: region analysis (96%), localization (88.88%) and cost (36%). We conclude that this type of auditing evaluation is rather innovative and is being gradually implemented by the health insurance companies, but is not a systematic process. PMID:21503464

  18. Health-Related Quality of Life and Quality of Sexual Life in Obese Subjects

    PubMed Central

    Di Lazzaro, Luca; Pinto, Alessandro; Migliaccio, Silvia; Lenzi, Andrea; Donini, Lorenzo M.

    2014-01-01

    The increased prevalence of obesity represents, currently, one of the major public health issues, due to its consequences on physical and psychological health status as well as on the psychosocial functioning. As defined by the World Health Organization, sexual health is “a state of physical, emotional, mental, and social well-being in relation to sexuality.” The aim of the present study was to explore the relationship between sexual life in obese subjects and quality of life, psychological status, and disability. Methods. 95 obese subjects were recruited from June 2012 to February 2013 and underwent physical examination and measures for the assessment of quality of life, sexual life, psychological status, and disability. Results. In obese subjects sexual life was related to gender, age, psychological status, disability, and quality of life. Conclusion. As obesity is a multifactorial disease, and is accompanied by multiple comorbidities, it is difficult to identify a single causative factor responsible for the impairment of sexual life in obese subjects; thus, a thorough, multidimensional evaluation including sexual function assessment should be performed in obese people. PMID:24707290

  19. Applying total quality management concepts to public health organizations.

    PubMed Central

    Kaluzny, A D; McLaughlin, C P; Simpson, K

    1992-01-01

    Total quality management (TQM) is a participative, systematic approach to planning and implementing a continuous organizational improvement process. Its approach is focused on satisfying customers' expectations, identifying problems, building commitment, and promoting open decision-making among workers. TQM applies analytical tools, such as flow and statistical charts and check sheets, to gather data about activities within an organization. TQM uses process techniques, such as nominal groups, brainstorming, and consensus forming to facilitate communication and decision making. TQM applications in the public sector and particularly in public health agencies have been limited. The process of integrating TQM into public health agencies complements and enhances the Model Standards Program and assessment methodologies, such as the Assessment Protocol for Excellence in Public Health (APEX-PH), which are mechanisms for establishing strategic directions for public health. The authors examine the potential for using TQM as a method to achieve and exceed standards quickly and efficiently. They discuss the relationship of performance standards and assessment methodologies with TQM and provide guidelines for achieving the full potential of TQM in public health organizations. The guidelines include redefining the role of management, defining a common corporate culture, refining the role of citizen oversight functions, and setting realistic estimates of the time needed to complete a task or project. PMID:1594734

  20. Health-Related Quality of Life Following Blind Rehabilitation

    PubMed Central

    Kuyk, Thomas; Liu, Lei; Elliott, Jeffry L.; Grubbs, Hartley E.; Owsley, Cynthia; McGwin, Gerald; Griffin, Russell L.; Fuhr, Patti S.

    2009-01-01

    Purpose The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of residential blind rehabilitation on patients’ vision targeted health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and general physical and mental function. Methods The National Eye Institute 25-item Visual Function Questionnaire (NEI VFQ) plus appendix questions, the 12 item Short-Form Health Survey (SF-12), Hope Scale and Coopersmith self-esteem inventory were administered to 206 legally blind veterans prior to their entering a residential (in-patient) blind rehabilitation program and again to 185 and 176 of the original cohort at two and six months after completion of the rehabilitation program, respectively. Data on visual acuity, visual field extent, contrast sensitivity and scanning ability were also collected. The duration of the in-patient rehabilitation programs ranged from 11–109 days. Questionnaire scores were compared pre-rehabilitation and post-rehabilitation. Results Following rehabilitation there was a significant improvement in nine of eleven NEI VFQ subscales and in a composite score at both 2- and 6-month post-rehab intervals. Mental health (SF-12) and self esteem also improved significantly although physical health ratings declined over the course of the study (approximately 10 months). Conclusions Residential blind rehabilitation appears to improve patients’ self-reported vision-targeted HRQOL, self-esteem, and mental health aspects of generic HRQOL. PMID:18392688

  1. Mitochondrial Protein Quality Control: The Mechanisms Guarding Mitochondrial Health

    PubMed Central

    Bohovych, Iryna; Chan, Sherine S.L.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Significance: Mitochondria are complex dynamic organelles pivotal for cellular physiology and human health. Failure to maintain mitochondrial health leads to numerous maladies that include late-onset neurodegenerative diseases and cardiovascular disorders. Furthermore, a decline in mitochondrial health is prevalent with aging. A set of evolutionary conserved mechanisms known as mitochondrial quality control (MQC) is involved in recognition and correction of the mitochondrial proteome. Recent Advances: Here, we review current knowledge and latest developments in MQC. We particularly focus on the proteolytic aspect of MQC and its impact on health and aging. Critical Issues: While our knowledge about MQC is steadily growing, critical gaps remain in the mechanistic understanding of how MQC modules sense damage and preserve mitochondrial welfare, particularly in higher organisms. Future Directions: Delineating how coordinated action of the MQC modules orchestrates physiological responses on both organellar and cellular levels will further elucidate the current picture of MQC's role and function in health, cellular stress, and degenerative diseases. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 22, 977–994. PMID:25546710

  2. Technical Limitations of Electronic Health Records in Community Health Centers: Implications on Ambulatory Care Quality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    West, Christopher E.

    2010-01-01

    Research objectives: This dissertation examines the state of development of each of the eight core electronic health record (EHR) functionalities as described by the IOM and describes how the current state of these functionalities limit quality improvement efforts in ambulatory care settings. There is a great deal of literature describing both the…

  3. Cultural orientation: an emerging dimension of quality in women's health services.

    PubMed

    Stone, C E

    2000-01-01

    There are many efforts underway to document the differences in health status and health services access of women in distinct cultural segments in the U.S. Along with the measurable aspects of health status and utilization, each cultural segment carries its unique perspective on what constitutes "quality" in women's health services. These definitions of quality may reflect access, interactions, process, and outcomes. Health care providers that aspire to provide quality women's health care need to identify the distinct cultural segments in their own communities; document the gaps in women's health services; and develop programs that are specific to clinical needs and quality criteria of these populations. PMID:11183584

  4. USQA Health Profile Database as a tool for health plan quality improvement.

    PubMed

    Hanchak, N A; Murray, J F; Hirsch, A; McDermott, P D; Schlackman, N

    1996-01-01

    Managed care organizations are in a unique position to evaluate and improve the quality of care delivered to their defined memberships. Traditionally, health services delivery has been claims-focused. We describe a potentially richer, patient-centered approach, whereby patients with certain chronic diseases are first identified and then used as the unit of analysis. U.S. Quality Algorithms (USQA), a subsidiary of U.S. Healthcare (USHC) based in Blue Bell, Pennsylvania, has developed selection criteria for 36 different chronic diseases and a new database, the USQA Health Profile Database (HPD), to identify and archive patients with those diseases. Examples of how this approach and database can be used as a quality tool are demonstrated. PMID:10157263

  5. Mental Health and Health-Related Quality of Life in Multiple Sclerosis Caregivers in Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Stern, Marilyn; Arelis, Adriana Aguayo; Islas, Miguel Angel Macias; Barajas, Brenda Viridiana Rábago

    2016-01-01

    Background: Multiple sclerosis (MS) rates are increasing in Latin America, and caregiving for an individual with MS is associated with poorer mental and physical health outcomes. No existing research has examined the relation between mental health and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in MS caregivers in Latin America. Methods: The present study examined the association between mental health (Patient Health Questionnaire-9, Satisfaction with Life Scale, Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale, State-Trait Anxiety Inventory) and HRQOL (36-item Short Form Health Status Survey) in 81 Mexican MS caregivers. Results: A canonical correlation analysis uncovered a large, significant overall association between mental health and HRQOL, with 52.7% of the variance shared between the two sets of constructs. When individual canonical loadings were examined in this analysis, the most substantial pattern that emerged was between depression and general health. Four regressions controlling for demographic variables found that HRQOL uniquely accounted for 19.0% of the variance in caregiver anxiety, 32.5% in depression, 13.5% in satisfaction with life, and 14.3% in self-esteem. Conclusions: These findings demonstrated a strong association between HRQOL and mental health, which points to directions for future studies on interventions for MS caregivers, particularly in Mexican and other Latino populations. PMID:26917994

  6. Functional health outcomes as a measure of health care quality for Medicare beneficiaries.

    PubMed Central

    Bierman, A S; Lawrence, W F; Haffer, S C; Clancy, C M

    2001-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: the Medicare Health Outcomes Survey (HOS), a new quality measure in the Health Plan Employer Data and Information Set, is designed to assess physical and mental functional health outcomes of Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare+Choice organizations. We discuss the rationale for the HOS measure together with methodologic challenges in its use and interpretation, using descriptive data from the baseline Medicare HOS to illustrate some of these challenges. DATA SOURCES/STUDY DESIGN: The 1999 Cohort 2 Medicare HOS baseline data were used for a cross-sectional descriptive analysis. A random sample of 1,000 beneficiaries from each health plan with a Medicare+Choice contract was surveyed (N = 156,842; 282 organizations included in these analyses) . PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The HOS measure is designed to assess a previously unmeasured dimension of quality. Plan-level variation was seen across all baseline measures of sociodemographic characteristics and illness burden. At the individual level socioeconomic position as measured by educational attainment was strongly associated with functional status. The least educated beneficiaries had the highest burden of illness on all measures examined, and there was a consistent and significant gradient in health and functional status across all levels of education. In analyses stratified by race and ethnicity, socioeconomic gradients in f un ct ion persist ed. CONCLUSIONS Despite limitations, by focusing at t en t ion on the need to improve functional health out comes among elderly Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare+Choice, the HOS can serve as an important new tool to support efforts to improve health care quality. The HOS provides valuable information at the federal, state, and health plan levels that can be used to identify, prioritize, and evaluate quality improvement interventions and monitor progress for the program overall as well as for vulnerable subgroups. To interpret the HOS as a quality measure

  7. Quality and Safety in Health Care, Part I: Five Pioneers in Quality.

    PubMed

    Harolds, Jay

    2015-08-01

    Five pioneers had a huge impact on the quality movement in health care in the United States. Ernest Codman contributed in many ways, including his focus on outcome analysis. Avidis Donabedian is known for his focus on the 3 domains of structure, process, and outcome in health care. Walter Shewhart is known especially for the control chart and early work on what W. Edwards Deming made into the PDSA cycle. Deming is also known for other contributions, including his 14 points of management, correcting system problems rather than blaming the workers, and his System of Profound Knowledge. Juran is known for the Pareto principle and his emphasis on customer satisfaction and addressing the human, not just statistical side, of quality improvement. PMID:26147460

  8. 42 CFR 480.141 - Disclosure of QIO interpretations on the quality of health care.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) QUALITY IMPROVEMENT ORGANIZATIONS ACQUISITION, PROTECTION, AND DISCLOSURE OF QUALITY IMPROVEMENT ORGANIZATION REVIEW INFORMATION Utilization and Quality Control... 42 Public Health 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Disclosure of QIO interpretations on the quality...

  9. An Affordable Open-Source Turbidimeter

    PubMed Central

    Kelley, Christopher D.; Krolick, Alexander; Brunner, Logan; Burklund, Alison; Kahn, Daniel; Ball, William P.; Weber-Shirk, Monroe

    2014-01-01

    Turbidity is an internationally recognized criterion for assessing drinking water quality, because the colloidal particles in turbid water may harbor pathogens, chemically reduce oxidizing disinfectants, and hinder attempts to disinfect water with ultraviolet radiation. A turbidimeter is an electronic/optical instrument that assesses turbidity by measuring the scattering of light passing through a water sample containing such colloidal particles. Commercial turbidimeters cost hundreds or thousands of dollars, putting them beyond the reach of low-resource communities around the world. An affordable open-source turbidimeter based on a single light-to-frequency sensor was designed and constructed, and evaluated against a portable commercial turbidimeter. The final product, which builds on extensive published research, is intended to catalyze further developments in affordable water and sanitation monitoring. PMID:24759114

  10. An affordable open-source turbidimeter.

    PubMed

    Kelley, Christopher D; Krolick, Alexander; Brunner, Logan; Burklund, Alison; Kahn, Daniel; Ball, William P; Weber-Shirk, Monroe

    2014-01-01

    Turbidity is an internationally recognized criterion for assessing drinking water quality, because the colloidal particles in turbid water may harbor pathogens, chemically reduce oxidizing disinfectants, and hinder attempts to disinfect water with ultraviolet radiation. A turbidimeter is an electronic/optical instrument that assesses turbidity by measuring the scattering of light passing through a water sample containing such colloidal particles. Commercial turbidimeters cost hundreds or thousands of dollars, putting them beyond the reach of low-resource communities around the world. An affordable open-source turbidimeter based on a single light-to-frequency sensor was designed and constructed, and evaluated against a portable commercial turbidimeter. The final product, which builds on extensive published research, is intended to catalyze further developments in affordable water and sanitation monitoring. PMID:24759114

  11. [A quality evaluation tableau for health institutions: an educational tool].

    PubMed

    Moll, Marie Christine; Decavel, Frédérique; Merlet, Christine

    2009-09-01

    For a few years, health institutions have had to comply with the certification and the need to establish the new governance. Thanks to the accreditation version 2 (obtained in 2005), the elaboration of the hospital project (adopted in October, 2006) and the organization in poles since 2006, the quality oriented management became a priority axis at the University Hospital of Angers. The strategic adaptation to quality requirements leads to develop the hospital management, more especially at the level of the clinical, medico technical and administrative poles. The elements of the hospital project including the part about the quality, risk and evaluation aim at being adapted by every pole according to the level of its project. This adaptation which is imposed to each pole manager requires a practical and educational accompaniment allowing at the same time to realize a diagnosis of the progress of the quality approach, a measure of the impact of the global impregnation within the institution and a comparison between pole. A eight axis dashboard with criteria and a user guide were developed from certification ISO 9001, the EFQM manual and the certification manual version 2 of the Healthcare High Authorities. The criteria are transcribed in an EXCEL grid ready to use. Succeeding in estimating your own quality system means that you demonstrate the maturity of the quality approach. The results of this evaluation confirmed those of the certification. The dashboard is a management structuring tool at the service of the multidisciplinary team. Two considerations emerge from these results: First of all, for the hospital top management, the axes to be improved emerge as a priority to determine and target the next annual action plans. The results also allow to support the auto evaluation for the certification version 2010 planned in January of the same year. It is a pragmatic tool which allows auto evaluation and comparison to estimate the pole performances. It is a strategic

  12. Quality at a price you can afford

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garrett, Steven; Smith, Robert; Poese, Matthew

    2005-09-01

    The transition of thermoacoustics from the laboratory to the commercial sector involves a process that is very different from science. In the laboratory, when an experiment fails to produce the expected result, it is possible to make modifications, followed by further measurements, to isolate the discrepancy. After discussions with nearly 40 different companies over the past 5 years, there is rarely any feedback about why a given company decides not to proceed. In such an open-loop environment, we are left with only speculation regarding this obscure process. This talk will postulate some reasons that have led to our failure, thus far, to team with an early adaptor of the technology. These include their general lack of familiarity with acoustics, difficulties surrounding licensing of existing and future intellectual property controlled by a university, and the drift away from the maintenance of an active in-house research capability in industry [see H. W. Chesbrough, Open Innovation (Harvard, 2003)]. The sequence of events that lead to formation of the ThermoAcoustics Corporation, an investor-funded start-up, will be related, along with the changes that licensure of intellectual property have made to our ability to deal with industry on a business-to-business basis without intervention of university tech-transfer professionals.

  13. Pricing products: juxtaposing affordability with quality appeal.

    PubMed

    1984-01-01

    Choosing appropriate product prices is 1 of the most crucial steps in creating an effective contraceptive social marketing (CSM) sales campaign. The Social Marketing Forum conducted an informal survey of social marketing project managers, international contractors, and marketing consultants to determine how CSM programs cope with pricing problems and ways to circumvent some obstacles. According to Diana Altman, a family planning consultant, low prices that make products available to needy individuals are more important than the program's self sufficiency, yet if prices are too low, consumers think the products were unusable in the US and thus were dumped on local markets. Other key factors include commercial competition, spiraling inflation rates, and problems with rising prices and retailer/distributor margins. A sampling of per capita gross national products indicates the poverty level of most CSM projects' target market. Consequently, CSM projects must set low pices, regardless of program operating costs. The goal often is to increase the demand and availability for contraceptives. The fact that social marketing products must pass through retail networks to reach consumers complicates the pricing equation. To deal with the problem, India's Nirodh program gives a 25% margin to distributors/wholesalers, compared to 6% offered on most other goods. Retailers also receive a 25% margin, more than double the commercial rate. Once prices are set, increases pose hazards. Local government approval often is a prerequisite and can require lengthy negotiations. Market studies remain a valuable approach to effective pricing, according to PNA's Mallamad and other research consultants. They cite such effective research strategies as test marketing products and asking consumers how prices affect buying habits. Further, CSM projects can jump over some pricing hurdles through creative marketing. An effective pricing strategy alone cannot produce a successful CSM program. Pricing must accompany such factors as strong advertising, committed management, and adept salespersons. PMID:12313292

  14. Assistance, Quality, and Affordability Act of 2010

    THOMAS, 111th Congress

    Rep. Waxman, Henry A. [D-CA-30

    2010-05-18

    08/05/2010 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works. (All Actions) Notes: For further action, see S.3874, which became Public Law 111-380 on 1/4/2011. Tracker: This bill has the status Passed HouseHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  15. How to evaluate the quality of health related websites.

    PubMed

    Gattoni, Filippo; Sicola, Chiara

    2005-03-01

    To establish reliable quality criteria for medical websites is of foremost importance in relation to the increasing number of Internet users, both health professionals and lay people, searching for medical information in the mass of these sites. Quality in general refers to a set of features that distinguish one person or thing from others of the same type. The quality of a website is usually related to its content and usability. The first criteria we considered are contents and readability, which must be targeted to the intended type of user. Other important criteria include: transparency, consistency, honesty, references to sources, accountability, respect of privacy, currency of content material, responsibility, and accessibility. Technical criteria are the use of consolidated and standard technologies, soft colours, short page download time. Good medical websites should also follow the suggestions of organizations such as the World Health Organization, the Food and Drug Administration, the European Communities. Another organization, Health On Net Foundation, has issued some guidelines for medical websites, summarized in eight points, fundamental to assign real scientific value to a site. We believe, in agreement with the literature, that it is unnecessary to apply strict rules to medical website developers. We want to stress the importance of guidelines and recommendations to be modified with the development of web technology and the cultural evolution of patient and physicians. In the near future the presence on the Internet of websites certified by national or international medical web authorities will lead users to trust and give their preference to such sites, leading to the self-regulation of website developers and users. PMID:15775897

  16. Indoor air quality. [Health hazards due to energy conservation measures

    SciTech Connect

    Hollowell, C.D.

    1981-06-01

    Rising energy prices, among other factors, have generated an incentive to reduce ventilation rates and thereby reduce the cost of heating and cooling buildings. Reduced ventilation in buildings may significantly increase exposure to indoor air pollution and perhaps have adverse effects on occupant health and comfort. Preliminary findings suggest that reduced ventilation may adversely affect indoor air quality unless appropriate control strategies are undertaken. The strategies used to control indoor air pollution depend on the specific pollutant or class of pollutants encountered, and differ somewhat depending on whether the application is to an existing building or a new building under design and construction. Whenever possible, the first course of action is prevention or reduction of pollutant emissions at the source. In most buildings, control measures involve a combination of prevention, removal, and suppression. Common sources of indoor air pollution in buildings, the specific pollutants emitted by each source, the potential health effects, and possible control techniques are discussed.

  17. Quality and Value in an Evolving Health Care Landscape.

    PubMed

    Kamal, Robin N

    2016-07-01

    Demonstrating and improving value of care continues to be increasingly important in hand surgery. To prepare for emerging models that transition payment from volume to value, hand surgeons will benefit from a clear understanding of quality, cost, and value. National organizations and both public and private payers increasingly advocate for patient-reported outcome measures for pay for reporting and pay for performance initiatives. These are intended to incentivize providers and health systems to improve patient-centered care while minimizing costs. Appreciating the limitations to using patient-reported outcomes in hand surgery can ensure hand surgery is appropriately assessed in novel payment models. PMID:27374791

  18. Managing health care variability to achieve quality care.

    PubMed

    Simmons, J C

    2001-05-01

    While much has been written about variation and health care, one area that has received little attention is variation within hospitals related to the operations management--which can lead to wasted money and human resources. Two Boston researchers who have been studying this area say that addressing these variations--and using techniques found in other major industries across the country--could give hospitals a new tool in addressing patient safety issues, nursing shortages, cost containment, and overall better quality of care. PMID:11400326

  19. Quality Implementation in Health Physics Unit, Cosenza Hospital. Accreditation Program as Quality Improvement instrument.

    PubMed

    Loizzo, M; Siciliano, R

    2016-01-01

    Achieving high levels of quality in healthcare, which could be measurable, is increasingly important at present and is dictated by the radical changes of the welfare system imposed today by the well known economic constraints. However, even in the ongoing legislation, the practices concerning the verification and review of the quality of health care has had a major impact in the galaxy of Health. On the one hand, the citizen is developing an awareness of the possibilities of choice (Empowerment) between a plurality of providers of healthcare services, on the other hand providers themselves are obliged, within the logic of a global market, to retrain their offers to respond satisfactorily to the needs of citizens. The purpose of this study was to demonstrate how the adoption of Operational Procedures, following the granting of a certificate of accreditation to the Unit of Medical Physics, has changed the approach to the work on the part of health workers, in the direction of a dynamic quality improvement. PMID:27479767

  20. Perceptions of Local Health Care Quality in 7 Rural Communities with Telemedicine

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nesbitt, Thomas S.; Marcin, James P.; Daschbach, Martha M.; Cole, Stacey L.

    2005-01-01

    Rural health services are difficult to maintain because of low patient volumes, limited numbers of providers, and unfavorable economies of scale. Rural patients may perceive poor quality in local health care, directly impacting the sustainability of local health care services. This study examines perceptions of local health care quality in 7…

  1. Water quality associated public health risk in Bo, Sierra Leone.

    PubMed

    Jimmy, David H; Sundufu, Abu J; Malanoski, Anthony P; Jacobsen, Kathryn H; Ansumana, Rashid; Leski, Tomasz A; Bangura, Umaru; Bockarie, Alfred S; Tejan, Edries; Lin, Baochuan; Stenger, David A

    2013-01-01

    Human health depends on reliable access to safe drinking water, but in many developing countries only a limited number of wells and boreholes are available. Many of these water resources are contaminated with biological or chemical pollutants. The goal of this study was to examine water access and quality in urban Bo, Sierra Leone. A health census and community mapping project in one neighborhood in Bo identified the 36 water sources used by the community. A water sample was taken from each water source and tested for a variety of microbiological and physicochemical substances. Only 38.9% of the water sources met World Health Organization (WHO) microbial safety requirements based on fecal coliform levels. Physiochemical analysis indicated that the majority (91.7%) of the water sources met the requirements set by the WHO. In combination, 25% of these water resources met safe drinking water criteria. No variables associated with wells were statistically significant predictors of contamination. This study indicated that fecal contamination is the greatest health risk associated with drinking water. There is a need to raise hygiene awareness and implement inexpensive methods to reduce fecal contamination and improve drinking water safety in Bo, Sierra Leone. PMID:22350346

  2. [Determinants of health and health policy. Part 3. From intervention of quality of life].

    PubMed

    Zácek, A

    2000-03-29

    Effectiveness of outputs of a qualified intervention can be valued by several positive criteria corresponding to the "quality of life" conception, which is based on the feeling of the health and contentment. The finding that great differences in the income among different social groups in conditions of the liberal market society correlate with several health and social problems brought about to the hypothesis that the decrease of the differences in the income, accompanied by strengthening of various forms of the social cohesion, civic solidarity, legitimate equality, and ethical justice may substantially improve the health status of the population. The hypothesis has been verified in many epidemiological studies and found to be valid enough for the health policy and far-seeing economy. Analytics of the World Bank recommend to governments primary invest into the health of socially week groups in order to decrease their poverty and to keep social conciliation. World Health Organization (WHO) sets in its new program for Europe called "21 Goals for the 21st Century" that differences in the health status among the European states should diminish till 2020 by one third and within the countries by one quarter at least. Both goals should be achieved by a substantial improvement of the health status of the ill-adapted social groups and by significant improvement of those socioeconomical conditions which may have adverse effects namely on the differences in incomes, education and opportunities for employment. PMID:10916199

  3. 76 FR 11283 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Affordable...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-03-01

    ...; Affordable Care Act Internal Claims and Appeals and External Review Procedures for Non-Grandfathered Plans... Administration (EBSA) sponsored information collection request (ICR) titled, ``Affordable Care Act Internal... Affordable Care Act added Public Health Service Act section 2719, which provides rules relating to......

  4. Making the case to improve quality and reduce costs in pediatric health care.

    PubMed

    Sachdeva, Ramesh C; Jain, Shabnam

    2009-08-01

    This article makes a case for the urgent need to improve health care quality and reduce costs. It provides an overview of the importance of the quality movement and the definition of quality, including the concept of clinical and operational quality. Some national drivers for quality improvement as well as drivers of escalating health care costs are discussed, along with the urgency of reducing health care costs. The link between quality and cost is reviewed using the concept of value in health care, which combines quality and cost in the same equation. The article ends with a discussion of future directions of the quality movement, including emerging concepts, such as risk-adjustment, shared responsibility for quality, measuring quality at the individual provider level, and evolving legal implications of the quality movement, as well as the concept of a shared savings model. PMID:19660624

  5. Limited analytical capacity for cyanotoxins in developing countries may hide serious environmental health problems: simple and affordable methods may be the answer.

    PubMed

    Pírez, Macarena; Gonzalez-Sapienza, Gualberto; Sienra, Daniel; Ferrari, Graciela; Last, Michael; Last, Jerold A; Brena, Beatriz M

    2013-01-15

    In recent years, the international demand for commodities has prompted enormous growth in agriculture in most South American countries. Due to intensive use of fertilizers, cyanobacterial blooms have become a recurrent phenomenon throughout the continent, but their potential health risk remains largely unknown due to the lack of analytical capacity. In this paper we report the main results and conclusions of more than five years of systematic monitoring of cyanobacterial blooms in 20 beaches of Montevideo, Uruguay, on the Rio de la Plata, the fifth largest basin in the world. A locally developed microcystin ELISA was used to establish a sustainable monitoring program that revealed seasonal peaks of extremely high toxicity, more than one-thousand-fold greater than the WHO limit for recreational water. Comparison with cyanobacterial cell counts and chlorophyll-a determination, two commonly used parameters for indirect estimation of toxicity, showed that such indicators can be highly misleading. On the other hand, the accumulated experience led to the definition of a simple criterion for visual classification of blooms, that can be used by trained lifeguards and technicians to take rapid on-site decisions on beach management. The simple and low cost approach is broadly applicable to risk assessment and risk management in developing countries. PMID:23220602

  6. Dental health and oral health-related quality of life in children with congenital bleeding disorders.

    PubMed

    Salem, K; Eshghi, P

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the dental and some other aspects of oral health status of young patients with congenital bleeding disorders (CBD) and the impact of these on their quality of life (OHR-QoL) compared with controls. DMFS-dmfs (Decayed, Missed, Filled Tooth surfaces in permanent and primary teeth) scores, Simplified oral hygiene index, occurance of hypoplasia of first permanent molars, Temporomandibular joint dysfunction and occlusion of 46 CBD patients at the age range of 2-15 years and 46 of other children as control were compared, and the impact of their oral health situation on quality of life was also investigated. Data were analysed by chi-square, t-test and Pearson correlation. Patients were significantly more caries-free with less decayed teeth in primary-permanent dentition (P = 0.03, t = -2.17).The mean scores of OHR-QoL of CBD patients and controls were not significantly different. Oral Bleeding was the significant variable in relation to 'oral health-related quality of life' in CBD groups (Pearson correlation, r = -0.56, P = 0.000). OHR-QoL in the control group was related to dmfs score (r = -0.392, P = 0.011) and male gender (r = -0.329, P = 0.026). Congenital bleeding disorder CBD patients were found to have a better dental health situation in primary dentition compared with controls; however, their 'oral health-related quality of life' was similar. Oral bleeding was the only significant factor related to OHR-QoL in CBD. It shows an overall importance of development of comprehensive care centres for CBD as the main cause of this achievement. PMID:22970656

  7. Contribution of food prices and diet cost to socioeconomic disparities in diet quality and health: a systematic review and analysis

    PubMed Central

    Drewnowski, Adam

    2015-01-01

    Context: It is well established in the literature that healthier diets cost more than unhealthy diets. Objective: The aim of this review was to examine the contribution of food prices and diet cost to socioeconomic inequalities in diet quality. Data Sources: A systematic literature search of the PubMed, Google Scholar, and Web of Science databases was performed. Study Selection: Publications linking food prices, dietary quality, and socioeconomic status were selected. Data Extraction: Where possible, review conclusions were illustrated using a French national database of commonly consumed foods and their mean retail prices. Data Synthesis: Foods of lower nutritional value and lower-quality diets generally cost less per calorie and tended to be selected by groups of lower socioeconomic status. A number of nutrient-dense foods were available at low cost but were not always palatable or culturally acceptable to the low-income consumer. Acceptable healthier diets were uniformly associated with higher costs. Food budgets in poverty were insufficient to ensure optimum diets. Conclusions: Socioeconomic disparities in diet quality may be explained by the higher cost of healthy diets. Identifying food patterns that are nutrient rich, affordable, and appealing should be a priority to fight social inequalities in nutrition and health. PMID:26307238

  8. Practical and affordable ways to cultivate leadership in your organization.

    PubMed

    Gaufin, Joyce R; Kennedy, Kathy I; Struthers, Ellen D

    2010-01-01

    Leadership can be cultivated through the intentional actions of managers and others in public health organizations. This article provides a rationale for taking innovative and proactive steps to build leadership, discusses four general strategies for doing so, and presents seven practical, creative, and affordable actions that can have a positive influence on efforts to cultivate leadership qualities in the public health workforce. Each action is illustrated with an actual contemporary example from a local public health agency. The actions include providing formal or informal coaching/mentoring opportunities; assigning staff to lead new projects or collaborations, projects outside their disciplines, projects that cause growth in their information technology capacity, or orphan or struggling projects; facilitating a book club; and institutionalizing reflection. The best way to ensure that effective leadership is available when the organization needs it is to intentionally develop it through an ongoing process. Leadership growth can be supported during the ordinary course of business in a public health organization through thoughtful challenges, sharing ideas and experiences, and especially through the example set by managers and those in positions of authority. PMID:20150799

  9. Health-related quality of life for chronically ill children.

    PubMed

    Cantrell, Mary Ann; Kelly, Michelle M

    2015-01-01

    Approximately 43% of children in the United States (32 million) are currently living with at least 1 of 20 common chronic childhood illnesses. The most common chronic childhood illnesses are asthma, cystic fibrosis, diabetes, obesity, malnutrition, developmental disabilities, cerebral palsy, consequences of low birthweight, and mental illness. For all chronically ill pediatric populations, the outcome of health-related quality of life (HRQOL) is particularly important because many of these children have not and will not be cured, and will continue to manage their chronic illness into adulthood. Advances in biomedical science and technology continue to improve efficacy of treatments and care for chronically ill children, adolescents, and their families, which highlight the importance measurement of HRQOL as a treatment and health status outcome. The construct of HRQOL is subjective, multidimensional, dynamic, and unique to each individual. It includes aspects of physical, psychological, social function, and goal attainment. Outcomes of HRQOL now include the financial implications for these children and their families, as well as financial and organizational consequences for healthcare planning and delivery of services.This article reviews the importance of HRQOL as a health outcome for chronically ill children. A historical overview and synthesis of the conceptualization and measurement of HRQOL for the chronically ill pediatric population is provided. Current research investigations that have measured health outcomes using individual scales tailored to children's specific symptoms health outcomes, such as PROMIS®-Patient Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System-are reviewed. The clinical applications of HRQOL outcomes research include facilitation of patient-healthcare provider communication, improved patient satisfaction, identification of hidden morbidities, a positive impact on clinical decision making, and improvement of patient outcomes over time

  10. Why epidemiologists cannot afford to ignore poverty.

    PubMed

    Krieger, Nancy

    2007-11-01

    Epidemiologists cannot afford to ignore poverty. To do so would, first, wrongly obscure the devastating impact of poverty on population health, and, second, undercut our commitment to scientific rigor. At issue is doing correct science, not "politically correct" science. Blot poverty and inequity from view, and not only will we contribute to making suffering invisible but our understanding of disease etiology and distribution will be marred. To make this case, I address current debates about the causal relationships between poverty and health, and provide examples of how failing to consider the impact of socioeconomic position has biased epidemiologic knowledge and harmed the public's health. By definition, the people we study are simultaneously social beings and biologic organisms-and we cannot study the latter without taking into account the former. It is the responsibility of all epidemiologists, and not only social epidemiologists, to keep in mind the connections between poverty and health. PMID:18049180

  11. Health-Related Quality of Life and Appropriateness of Cholecystectomy

    PubMed Central

    Quintana, José Ma; Cabriada, Jose; Aróstegui, Inmaculada; Oribe, Victor; Perdigo, Luis; Varona, Mercedes; Bilbao, Amaia

    2005-01-01

    Ojbective: To evaluate the relationship among appropriateness of the use of cholecystectomy and outcomes. Summary Background Data: The use of cholecystectomy varies widely across regions and countries. Explicit appropriateness criteria may help identify suitable candidates for this commonly performed procedure. This study evaluates the relationship among appropriateness of the use of cholecystectomy and outcomes. Methods: Prospective observational study in 6 public hospitals in Spain of all consecutive patients on waiting lists to undergo cholecystectomy for nonmalignant disease. Explicit appropriateness criteria for the use of cholecystectomy were developed by a panel of experts using the RAND appropriateness methodology and applied to recruited patients. Patients were asked to complete 2 questionnaires that measure health-related quality of life—the Short Form 36 (SF-36) and the Gastrointestinal Quality of Life Index (GIQLI)—before the intervention and 3 months after it. Results: Patients judged as being appropriate candidates for cholecystectomy, using the panel's explicit appropriateness criteria, had greater improvements in the bodily pain, vitality, and social function domains of the SF-36 than those judged to be inappropriate candidates. They also demonstrated improvements in the GIQLI's physical impairment domain. Interventions judged as inappropriate were performed primarily among patients without symptoms of cholelithiasis. Those asymptomatic had a lower improvement in the bodily pain, social functioning, and physical summary scale of the SF-36 and in the symptomatology, physical impairment, and total score domains of the GIQLI. Conclusions: These results suggest a direct relationship between the application of explicit appropriateness criteria and better outcomes, as measured by health-related quality of life. They also indicate that patients without symptoms are not good candidates for cholecystectomy. PMID:15621998

  12. [Health-related quality of life in Parkinson's disease].

    PubMed

    Cano-de la Cuerda, Roberto; Vela-Desojo, Lydia; Miangolarra-Page, Juan C; Macías-Macías, Yolanda; Muñoz-Hellin, Elena

    2010-01-01

    Parkinson's disease is a disabling and progressive neurological condition characterized by multiple motor and non motor symptoms that contribute to deterioration in quality of life. The diversity of symptoms associated with the disease and its management affect the patients on their physical, social and mental quality of life. The aim of this study was to identify key dimensions of health related quality of life (HRQOL) in a population affected with Parkinson's disease with a degree of mild-moderate impairment. Thirty six patients with Parkinson were recruited. The Hoehn and Yarh scale, the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rate Scale, the scale of activities of daily life and Schwab & England Get Up & Go Test were applied. HRQOL was assessed with the EuroQol-5D and the specific questionnaire Parkinson's Disease Questionnaire-39 items. The dimensions of the PDQ-39, except the PDQ-39 Pain domain and the EuroQol-5D correlated significantly with the severity of the disease. HRQOL was correlated with the functional status of patients. Only the PDQ-39 pain domain correlated with the risk of falls. Our results suggest that the HRQOL of patients with PD, in a state of mild-moderate impairment, is strongly influenced by disease severity and functional status. PMID:21163736

  13. Client satisfaction and quality of health care in rural Bangladesh.

    PubMed Central

    Mendoza Aldana, J.; Piechulek, H.; al-Sabir, A.

    2001-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To assess user expectations and degree of client satisfaction and quality of health care provided in rural Bangladesh. METHODS: A total of 1913 persons chosen by systematic random sampling were successfully interviewed immediately after having received care in government health facilities. FINDINGS: The most powerful predictor for client satisfaction with the government services was provider behaviour, especially respect and politeness. For patients this aspect was much more important than the technical competence of the provider. Furthermore, a reduction in waiting time (on average to 30 min) was more important to clients than a prolongation of the quite short (from a medical standpoint) consultation time (on average 2 min, 22 sec), with 75% of clients being satisfied. Waiting time, which was about double at outreach services than that at fixed services, was the only element with which users of outreach services were dissatisfied. CONCLUSIONS: This study underscores that client satisfaction is determined by the cultural background of the people. It shows the dilemma that, though optimally care should be capable of meeting both medical and psychosocial needs, in reality care that meets all medical needs may fail to meet the client's emotional or social needs. Conversely, care that meets psychosocial needs may leave the clients medically at risk. It seems important that developing countries promoting client-oriented health services should carry out more in-depth research on the determinants of client satisfaction in the respective culture. PMID:11436472

  14. The ethics of using quality improvement methods in health care.

    PubMed

    Lynn, Joanne; Baily, Mary Ann; Bottrell, Melissa; Jennings, Bruce; Levine, Robert J; Davidoff, Frank; Casarett, David; Corrigan, Janet; Fox, Ellen; Wynia, Matthew K; Agich, George J; O'Kane, Margaret; Speroff, Theodore; Schyve, Paul; Batalden, Paul; Tunis, Sean; Berlinger, Nancy; Cronenwett, Linda; Fitzmaurice, J Michael; Dubler, Nancy Neveloff; James, Brent

    2007-05-01

    Quality improvement (QI) activities can improve health care but must be conducted ethically. The Hastings Center convened leaders and scholars to address ethical requirements for QI and their relationship to regulations protecting human subjects of research. The group defined QI as systematic, data-guided activities designed to bring about immediate improvements in health care delivery in particular settings and concluded that QI is an intrinsic part of normal health care operations. Both clinicians and patients have an ethical responsibility to participate in QI, provided that it complies with specified ethical requirements. Most QI activities are not human subjects research and should not undergo review by an institutional review board; rather, appropriately calibrated supervision of QI activities should be part of professional supervision of clinical practice. The group formulated a framework that would use key characteristics of a project and its context to categorize it as QI, human subjects research, or both, with the potential of a customized institutional review board process for the overlap category. The group recommended a period of innovation and evaluation to refine the framework for ethical conduct of QI and to integrate that framework into clinical practice. PMID:17438310

  15. Marital quality and health: Implications for marriage in the 21st century

    PubMed Central

    Robles, Theodore F.

    2014-01-01

    Being in a happy marriage is related to better psychological and physical health. This paper describes current approaches to conceptualizing and measuring marital quality and physical health, and results from a recent meta-analysis examining associations between marital quality and physical health outcomes. To illustrate the practical significance of these findings, this paper also illustrates how the magnitude of the marital quality – physical health association is similar in size to associations between health behaviors (diet, physical activity) and health outcomes, and briefly reviews the state of the science regarding plausible biobehavioral pathways that explain how marital functioning influences health. After describing the current state of research on factors that might modify the association between marital quality and health, particularly individual differences and gender, the paper concludes with implications of the past 50 years of research on marital quality and health for marriage in the 21st century. PMID:25544806

  16. Optimism and diet quality in the Women's Health Initiative.

    PubMed

    Hingle, Melanie D; Wertheim, Betsy C; Tindle, Hilary A; Tinker, Lesley; Seguin, Rebecca A; Rosal, Milagros C; Thomson, Cynthia A

    2014-07-01

    Diet quality has not been well studied in relation to positive psychological traits. Our purpose was to investigate the relationship between optimism and diet quality in postmenopausal women enrolled in the Women's Health Initiative observational study (OS) and clinical trials (CTs), and to determine whether optimism was associated with diet change after a 1-year dietary intervention. Diet quality was scored with the Alternate Healthy Eating Index (AHEI) and optimism assessed with the Life Orientation Test-Revised. Baseline characteristics were compared across AHEI quintiles or optimism tertiles using regression models with each variable of interest as a function of quintiles or tertiles (OS, n=87,630; CT, n=65,360). Association between optimism and baseline AHEI and change in AHEI over 1 year were tested using multivariate linear regression (CT, n=13,645). Potential interaction between optimism and trial arm and demographic/lifestyle factors on AHEI change was tested using likelihood ratio test (CT intervention, n=13,645; CT control, n=20,242). Women reporting high AHEI were non-Hispanic white, educated, physically active, past or never smokers, hormone therapy users, had lower body mass index and waist circumference, and were less likely to have chronic conditions. In the CT intervention, higher optimism was associated with higher AHEI at baseline and with greater change over 1 year (P=0.001). Effect modification by intervention status was observed (P=0.014), whereas control participants with highest optimism achieved threefold greater AHEI increase compared with those with the lowest optimism. These data support a relationship between optimism and dietary quality score in postmenopausal women at baseline and over 1 year. PMID:24556429

  17. mHealth Quality: A Process to Seal the Qualified Mobile Health Apps.

    PubMed

    Yasini, Mobin; Beranger, Jérôme; Desmarais, Pierre; Perez, Lucas; Marchand, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    A large number of mobile health applications (apps) are currently available with a variety of functionalities. The user ratings in the app stores seem not to be reliable to determine the quality of the apps. The traditional methods of evaluation are not suitable for fast paced nature of mobile technology. In this study, we propose a collaborative multidimensional scale to assess the quality of mHealth apps. During our process, the app quality is assessed in various aspects including medical reliability, legal consistency, ethical consistency, usability aspects, personal data privacy and IT security. A hypothetico-deductive approach was used in various working groups to define the audit criteria based on the various use cases that an app could provide. These criteria were then implemented into a web based self-administered questionnaires and the generation of automatic reports were considered. This method is on the one hand specific to each app because it allows to assess each health app according to its offered functionalities. On the other hand, this method is automatic, transferable to all apps and adapted to the dynamic nature of mobile technology. PMID:27577372

  18. Subjective food intake ability related to oral health-related quality of life and psychological health.

    PubMed

    Choi, S-H; Kim, J-S; Cha, J-Y; Lee, K-J; Yu, H-S; Hwang, C-J

    2016-09-01

    Reduced food intake ability can restrict an individual's choice of foods and might have a significant impact on the individual's quality of life and mental health. The aim of this study was to evaluate the correlations between self-reported masticatory ability and oral health-related quality of life (OHRQOL) and psychological health. The study included 72 (26 men, 46 women) adults with a mean age of 26·4 ± 8·6 years. Each participant completed the key subjective food intake ability (KFIA) test for five key foods, the Korean version of the Oral Health Impact Profile-14 (OHIP-14K) and three questionnaires for measuring anxiety, depression and self-esteem. The participants were distributed into two groups by sex (a mean age of 23·9 ± 5·2 for men and 27·9 ± 9·8 for women) and by the median KFIA score. There were no significant differences in any of the variables according to sex. Thirty-two participants (12 men, 20 women) in the lower KFIA group had a higher total OHIP-14K (P < 0·001) and depression level (P < 0·05) than the 40 participants (14 men, 26 women) in the higher KFIA group. As the KFIA decreased, OHRQOL worsened (P < 0·001) and depression increased (P < 0·05). Participants with lower KFIA scores were more than 4·3 times as likely as to have a poor OHRQOL than the reference group (odds ratio, 4·348; 95% confidence interval, 1·554-12·170, P < 0·01). Lower subjective food intake ability is associated with a poor oral health-related quality of life and higher depression level. PMID:27224265

  19. 42 CFR 422.2430 - Activities that improve health care quality.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ..., evidence-based medicine, and health information technology under the plan or coverage. (iv) To promote... 42 Public Health 3 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Activities that improve health care quality. 422.2430 Section 422.2430 Public Health CENTERS FOR MEDICARE & MEDICAID SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH...

  20. 42 CFR 423.2430 - Activities that improve health care quality.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ..., evidence-based medicine, and health information technology under the plan or coverage. (iv) To promote... 42 Public Health 3 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Activities that improve health care quality. 423.2430 Section 423.2430 Public Health CENTERS FOR MEDICARE & MEDICAID SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH...

  1. 42 CFR 423.2430 - Activities that improve health care quality.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ..., evidence-based medicine, and health information technology under the plan or coverage. (iv) To promote... 42 Public Health 3 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Activities that improve health care quality. 423.2430 Section 423.2430 Public Health CENTERS FOR MEDICARE & MEDICAID SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH...

  2. 42 CFR 422.2430 - Activities that improve health care quality.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ..., evidence-based medicine, and health information technology under the plan or coverage. (iv) To promote... 42 Public Health 3 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Activities that improve health care quality. 422.2430 Section 422.2430 Public Health CENTERS FOR MEDICARE & MEDICAID SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH...

  3. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010: impact on otolaryngology practice and research.

    PubMed

    Sun, Gordon H; Davis, Matthew M

    2012-05-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) was signed into law by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010. Since its passage, the PPACA has led to increased health insurance coverage for millions more Americans, and it includes provisions leading to new avenues for clinical and health services research funding. The legislation also favors development of the primary care specialties and general surgery, increased training of midlevel health care providers, and medical training and service in underserved areas of the United States. However, the PPACA does not effectively engage otolaryngologists in quality improvement, despite modifications to the Physician Quality Reporting System. The legislation also levies a tax on cosmetic procedures, affecting both clinicians and patients. This article reviews the sections of the PPACA that are most pertinent to otolaryngologists and explains how these components of the bill will affect otolaryngologic practice and research over the coming decade. PMID:22282865

  4. Health information technology and health system redesign--the Quality Chasm revisited.

    PubMed

    Tuckson, Reed V; Vojta, Deneen; Slavitt, Andrew M

    2010-12-01

    UnitedHealth Group constructed the Diabetes Prevention and Control Alliance (DPCA) in a manner consistent with the recommendations for health system redesign outlined in the Institute of Medicine's Crossing the Quality Chasm. This evidence-based, multidisciplinary education and intervention program is enabled by a state-of-the-art health information technology (HIT) infrastructure. DPCA coordinates and connects a variety of interventions through HIT, including community-based services offered by YMCAs and local pharmacists. Our initial experience in operating DPCA gives us confidence that large-scale prevention and disease control management programs make economic sense, are worthy of front-end investment, and can achieve cost-effective results. Others who want to use our model will benefit from policymakers' efforts to prioritize future versions of transaction and coding standards that meet the needs of preventive healthcare as much as they do acute and chronic care. PMID:21314221

  5. Price, availability and affordability of medicines

    PubMed Central

    Mhlanga, Brenda S.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Background Medicines play an important role in healthcare, but prices can be a barrier to patient care. Few studies have looked at the prices of essential medicines in low- and middle-income countries in terms of patient affordability. Aim To determine the prices, availability and affordability of medicines along the supply chain in Swaziland. Setting Private- and public-sector facilities in Manzini, Swaziland. Methods The standardised methodology designed by the World Health Organization and Health Action International was used to survey 16 chronic disease medicines. Data were collected in one administrative area in 10 private retail pharmacies and 10 public health facilities. Originator brand (OB) and lowest-priced generic equivalent (LPG) medicines were monitored and these prices were then compared with international reference prices (IRPs). Affordability was calculated in terms of the daily wage of the lowest-paid unskilled government worker. Results Mean availability was 68% in the public sector. Private sector OB medicines were priced 32.4 times higher than IRPs, whilst LPGs were 7.32 times higher. OBs cost 473% more than LPGs. The total cumulative mark-ups for individual medicines range from 190.99% – 440.27%. The largest contributor to add-on cost was the retail mark-up (31% – 53%). Standard treatment with originator brands cost more than a day's wage. Conclusion Various policy measures such as introducing price capping at all levels of the medicine supply chain, may increase the availability, whilst at the same time reducing the prices of essential medicines for the low income population. PMID:26245401

  6. Towards Evidence-Based, Quality-Controlled Health Promotion: The Dutch Recognition System for Health Promotion Interventions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brug, Johannes; van Dale, Djoeke; Lanting, Loes; Kremers, Stef; Veenhof, Cindy; Leurs, Mariken; van Yperen, Tom; Kok, Gerjo

    2010-01-01

    Registration or recognition systems for best-practice health promotion interventions may contribute to better quality assurance and control in health promotion practice. In the Netherlands, such a system has been developed and is being implemented aiming to provide policy makers and professionals with more information on the quality and…

  7. An affordable humanitarian mine detector

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daniels, David J.; Curtis, Paul; Amin, Rajan; Dittmer, Jon

    2004-09-01

    This paper describes the further development of the MINETECT affordable humanitarian mine detector produced by ERA Technology with sponsorship from the UK Department for International Development. Using a radically different patented approach from conventional ground penetrating radar (GPR) designs in terms of the man machine interface, MINETECT offers simplicity of use and affordability, both key factors in humanitarian demining operations. Following trials in 2002 and reported at SPIE 2002, further development work including research on classifying mines, based on data from planned trials in the United Kingdom, is presented. MINETECT has the capability of detecting completely non-metallic mines and offers a considerable improvement in hand-held mine detection.

  8. Contagious Ideas from Health Care

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chaffee, Ellen

    2009-01-01

    Financial problems plague both higher education and health care, two sectors that struggle to meet public expectations for quality services at affordable rates. Both higher education and health care also have a complex bottom line, heavy reliance on relatively autonomous professionals, and clients who share personal responsibility for achieving…

  9. Determinants of Health and the Quality of Life in the Bella Coola Valley

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Michalos, Alex C.; Thommasen, Harvey V.; Read, Rua; Anderson, Nancy; Zumbo, Bruno D.

    2005-01-01

    The aim of this investigation is to obtain some baseline self-reported data of the health status and overall quality of life of all residents of the Bella Coola Valley of British Columbia aged 17 years or older, and to measure the impact of a set of designated health determinants on their health and quality of life. In the period from August to…

  10. 77 FR 70786 - Request for Information Regarding Health Care Quality for Exchanges

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-11-27

    ... HUMAN SERVICES Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Request for Information Regarding Health Care... Improvement in Health Care (National Quality Strategy) to create national aims and priorities that would guide local, state, and national efforts to improve the quality of health care in the United States....

  11. Improving the quality of workers' compensation health care delivery: the Washington State Occupational Health Services Project.

    PubMed

    Wickizer, T M; Franklin, G; Plaeger-Brockway, R; Mootz, R D

    2001-01-01

    This article has summarized research and policy activities undertaken in Washington State over the past several years to identify the key problems that result in poor quality and excessive disability among injured workers, and the types of system and delivery changes that could best address these problems in order to improve the quality of occupational health care provided through the workers' compensation system. Our investigations have consistently pointed to the lack of coordination and integration of occupational health services as having major adverse effects on quality and health outcomes for workers' compensation. The Managed Care Pilot Project, a delivery system intervention, focused on making changes in how care is organized and delivered to injured workers. That project demonstrated robust improvements in disability reduction; however, worker satisfaction suffered. Our current quality improvement initiative, developed through the Occupational Health Services Project, synthesizes what was learned from the MCP and other pilot studies to make delivery system improvements. This initiative seeks to develop provider incentives and clinical management processes that will improve outcomes and reduce the burden of disability on injured workers. Fundamental to this approach are simultaneously preserving workers' right to choose their own physician and maintaining flexibility in the provision of individualized care based on clinical need and progress. The OHS project then will be a "real world" test to determine if aligning provider incentives and giving physicians the tools they need to optimize occupational health delivery can demonstrate sustainable reduction in disability and improvements in patient and employer satisfaction. Critical to the success of this initiative will be our ability to: (1) enhance the occupational health care management skills and expertise of physicians who treat injured workers by establishing community-based Centers of Occupational

  12. Clinical Preventive Services Coverage and the Affordable Care Act

    PubMed Central

    Fox, Jared B.; Shaw, Frederic E.

    2016-01-01

    The Affordable Care Act requires many health plans to provide coverage for certain recommended clinical preventive services without charging copays or deductible payments. This provision could lead to greater uptake of many services that can improve health and save lives. Although the coverage provision is broad, there are many caveats that also apply. It is important for providers and public health professionals to understand the nuances of the coverage rules to help maximize their potential to improve population health. PMID:25393173

  13. Association between overuse of mobile phones on quality of sleep and general health among occupational health and safety students.

    PubMed

    Eyvazlou, Meysam; Zarei, Esmaeil; Rahimi, Azin; Abazari, Malek

    2016-01-01

    Concerns about health problems due to the increasing use of mobile phones are growing. Excessive use of mobile phones can affect the quality of sleep as one of the important issues in the health literature and general health of people. Therefore, this study investigated the relationship between the excessive use of mobile phones and general health and quality of sleep on 450 Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S) students in five universities of medical sciences in the North East of Iran in 2014. To achieve this objective, special questionnaires that included Cell Phone Overuse Scale, Pittsburgh's Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) and General Health Questionnaire (GHQ) were used, respectively. In addition to descriptive statistical methods, independent t-test, Pearson correlation, analysis of variance (ANOVA) and multiple regression tests were performed. The results revealed that half of the students had a poor level of sleep quality and most of them were considered unhealthy. The Pearson correlation co-efficient indicated a significant association between the excessive use of mobile phones and the total score of general health and the quality of sleep. In addition, the results of the multiple regression showed that the excessive use of mobile phones has a significant relationship between each of the four subscales of general health and the quality of sleep. Furthermore, the results of the multivariate regression indicated that the quality of sleep has a simultaneous effect on each of the four scales of the general health. Overall, a simultaneous study of the effects of the mobile phones on the quality of sleep and the general health could be considered as a trigger to employ some intervention programs to improve their general health status, quality of sleep and consequently educational performance. PMID:26942630

  14. Systematic review of health-related quality of life models

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background A systematic literature review was conducted to (a) identify the most frequently used health-related quality of life (HRQOL) models and (b) critique those models. Methods Online search engines were queried using pre-determined inclusion and exclusion criteria. We reviewed titles, abstracts, and then full-text articles for their relevance to this review. Then the most commonly used models were identified, reviewed in tables, and critiqued using published criteria. Results Of 1,602 titles identified, 100 articles from 21 countries met the inclusion criteria. The most frequently used HRQOL models were: Wilson and Cleary (16%), Ferrans and colleagues (4%), or World Health Organization (WHO) (5%). Ferrans and colleagues’ model was a revision of Wilson and Cleary’s model and appeared to have the greatest potential to guide future HRQOL research and practice. Conclusions Recommendations are for researchers to use one of the three common HRQOL models unless there are compelling and clearly delineated reasons for creating new models. Disease-specific models can be derived from one of the three commonly used HRQOL models. We recommend Ferrans and colleagues’ model because they added individual and environmental characteristics to the popular Wilson and Cleary model to better explain HRQOL. Using a common HRQOL model across studies will promote a coherent body of evidence that will more quickly advance the science in the area of HRQOL. PMID:23158687

  15. Developing Strategies for Affordable Bandwidth.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Educause Quarterly, 2000

    2000-01-01

    Written by Educause's Net@EDU Broadband Pricing Working Group, this article discusses what institutions of higher education can do to develop good partnerships with broadband vendors in order to negotiate affordable pricing for increased bandwidth. Describes problems with the marketplace, examples from a few universities, and points to remember…

  16. Construction of an environmental quality index for public health research

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background A more comprehensive estimate of environmental quality would improve our understanding of the relationship between environmental conditions and human health. An environmental quality index (EQI) for all counties in the U.S. was developed. Methods The EQI was developed in four parts: domain identification; data source acquisition; variable construction; and data reduction. Five environmental domains (air, water, land, built and sociodemographic) were recognized. Within each domain, data sources were identified; each was temporally (years 2000–2005) and geographically (county) restricted. Variables were constructed for each domain and assessed for missingness, collinearity, and normality. Domain-specific data reduction was accomplished using principal components analysis (PCA), resulting in domain-specific indices. Domain-specific indices were then combined into an overall EQI using PCA. In each PCA procedure, the first principal component was retained. Both domain-specific indices and overall EQI were stratified by four rural–urban continuum codes (RUCC). Higher values for each index were set to correspond to areas with poorer environmental quality. Results Concentrations of included variables differed across rural–urban strata, as did within-domain variable loadings, and domain index loadings for the EQI. In general, higher values of the air and sociodemographic indices were found in the more metropolitan areas and the most thinly populated areas have the lowest values of each of the domain indices. The less-urbanized counties (RUCC 3) demonstrated the greatest heterogeneity and range of EQI scores (−4.76, 3.57) while the thinly populated strata (RUCC 4) contained counties with the most positive scores (EQI score ranges from −5.86, 2.52). Conclusion The EQI holds promise for improving our characterization of the overall environment for public health. The EQI describes the non-residential ambient county-level conditions to which residents are

  17. Achieving a deeper understanding of the implemented provisions of the Affordable Care Act.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Shuang Qin; Polite, Blase N

    2014-01-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010. Since that time, numerous regulations have been promulgated, legal battles continue to be fought and the major provisions of the law are being implemented. In the following article, we outline components of the ACA that are relevant to cancer health care, review current implementation of the new health care reform law, and identify challenges that may lie ahead in the post-ACA era. Specifically, among the things we explore are Medicaid expansion, health insurance exchanges, essential health benefits and preventive services, subsidies, access to clinical trials, the Medicare Part D donut hole, and physician quality payment reform. PMID:24857142

  18. Implications of the Affordable Care Act for occupational therapy practitioners providing services to Medicare recipients.

    PubMed

    Fisher, Gail; Friesema, Jennifer

    2013-01-01

    The passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA; Pub. L. 111-148) represents the largest expansion in government funding of health care since Medicare and Medicaid were established in 1965 (Curfman, Abel, & Landers, 2012). Although the health insurance mandate and Medicaid expansion have received the most attention as a result of legal challenges and the July 2012 Supreme Court ruling on the legality of the ACA (Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, 2012), other ACA initiatives may have even greater implications for occupational therapy. The ACA includes sections on improving quality and health systems performance for Medicare recipients, with some sections also applying to Medicaid recipients. Insurance companies commonly follow Medicare rules; therefore, the Medicare reforms are likely to spread across all payers, health care settings, and care recipients. PMID:23968787

  19. Health-Related Quality of Life in Children with High-Functioning Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Potvin, Marie-Christine; Snider, Laurie; Prelock, Patricia A.; Wood-Dauphinee, Sharon; Kehayia, Eva

    2015-01-01

    The health-related quality of life of school-aged children with high-functioning autism is poorly understood. The objectives of this study were to compare the health-related quality of life of children with high-functioning autism to that of typically developing peers and to compare child-self and parent-proxy reports of health-related quality of…

  20. End-user perspectives on e-commerce and health care web site quality.

    PubMed

    Le Rouge, Cynthia; De Leo, Gianluca

    2008-01-01

    We explore and compare the importance of various quality dimensions for health care and e-commerce web sites. The results show that the importance of various quality attributes for all except four of ten quality dimensions studied differ between health care and e-commerce web sites. These results can help health care managers to improve and/or to guide the design of their web sites. PMID:18998907

  1. Health Reporting in Print Media in Lebanon: Evidence, Quality and Role in Informing Policymaking

    PubMed Central

    El-Jardali, Fadi; Bou Karroum, Lama; Bawab, Lamya; Kdouh, Ola; El-Sayed, Farah; Rachidi, Hala; Makki, Malak

    2015-01-01

    Background Media plays a vital role in shaping public policies and opinions through disseminating health-related information. This study aims at exploring the role of media in informing health policies in Lebanon, identifying the factors influencing health reporting and investigating the role of evidence in health journalism and the quality of health reporting. It also identifies strategies to enhance the use of evidence in health journalism and improve the quality of health reporting. Methods Media analysis was conducted to assess the way media reports on health-related issues and the quality of reporting using a quality assessment tool. Semi-structured interviews were also conducted with 27 journalists, researchers and policymakers to explore their perception on the role of media in health policymaking and the factors influencing health reporting. In addition, a validation workshop was conducted. Results Out of 1,279 health-related news articles identified, 318 articles used certain type of evidence to report health issues 39.8% of which relied on experts’ opinions as their source of evidence while only 5.9% referenced peer-reviewed research studies. The quality of health reporting was judged to be low based on a quality assessment tool consisting of a set of ten criteria. Journalists raised concerns about issues impeding them from referring to evidence. Journalists also reported difficulties with the investigative health journalism. Policymakers and researchers viewed media as an important tool for evidence-informed health policies, however, serious concerns were voiced in terms of the current practice and capacities. Conclusion Our study provides a structured reflection on the role of media and the factors that influence health reporting including context-specific strategies that would enhance the quality and promote the use of evidence in health reporting. In the light of the political changes in many Middle Eastern countries, findings from this study can

  2. 77 FR 3841 - Proposed Information Collection (Survey of Veteran Enrollees (Quality and Efficiency of VA Health...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-01-25

    ... Care)) Activities Under OMB Review AGENCY: Veterans Health Administration, Department of Veterans... VA Health Care), VA Form 10-21088. OMB Control Number: 2900-0725. Type of Review: Extension of a... promote quality and efficient delivery of health care through the use of health information...

  3. Assessment of the quality of measures of child oral health-related quality of life

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Several measures of oral health-related quality of life have been developed for children. The most frequently used are the Child Perceptions Questionnaire (CPQ), the Child Oral Impacts on Daily Performances (C-OIDP) and the Child Oral Health Impact Profile (COHIP). The aim of this study was to assess the methodological quality of the development and testing of these three measures. Methods A systematic search strategy was used to identify eligible studies published up to December 2012, using both MEDLINE and Web of Science. Titles and abstracts were read independently by two investigators and full papers retrieved where the inclusion criteria were met. Data were extracted by two teams of two investigators using a piloted protocol. The data were used to describe the development of the measures and their use against existing criteria. The methodological quality and measurement properties of the measures were assessed using standards proposed by the Consensus-based Standards for the Selection of Health Measurement Instruments (COSMIN) group. Results The search strategy yielded 653 papers, of which 417 were duplicates. Following analysis of the abstracts, 119 papers met the inclusion criteria. The majority of papers reported cross-sectional studies (n = 117) with three of longitudinal design. Fifteen studies which had used the original version of the measures in their original language were included in the COSMIN analysis. The most frequently used measure was the CPQ. Reliability and construct validity appear to be adequate for all three measures. Children were not fully involved in item generation which may compromise their content validity. Internal consistency was measured using classic test theory with no evidence of modern psychometric techniques being used to test unidimensionality of the measures included in the COSMIN analysis. Conclusion The three measures evaluated appear to be able to discriminate between groups. CPQ has been most widely

  4. Do employers know the quality of health care benefits they provide? Use of HEDIS depression scores for health plans.

    PubMed

    Robst, John; Rost, Kathryn; Marshall, Donna

    2013-11-01

    OBJECTIVE Dissemination of health quality measures is a necessary ingredient of efforts to harness market-based forces, such as value-based purchasing by employers, to improve health care quality. This study examined reporting of Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDIS) measures for depression to firms interested in improving depression care. METHODS During surveys conducted between 2009 and 2011, a sample of 325 employers that were interested in improving depression treatment were asked whether their primary health plan reports HEDIS scores for depression to the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) and if so, whether they knew the scores. Data about HEDIS reporting by the health plans were collected from the NCQA. RESULTS HEDIS depression scores were reported by the primary health plans of 154 (47%) employers, but only 7% of employers knew their plan's HEDIS scores. Because larger employers were more likely to report knowing the scores, 53% of all employees worked for employers who reported knowing the scores. A number of structural, health benefit, and need characteristics predicted knowledge of HEDIS depression scores by employers. CONCLUSIONS The study demonstrated that motivated employers did not know their depression HEDIS scores even when their plan publicly reported them. Measures of health care quality are not reaching the buyers of insurance products; however, larger employers were more likely to know the HEDIS scores for their health plan, suggesting that value-based purchasing may have some ability to affect health care quality. PMID:23945985

  5. Sensory Impairment and Health-Related Quality of Life

    PubMed Central

    KWON, Hye-Jin; KIM, Ji-su; KIM, Yoon-jung; KWON, Su-jin; YU, Jin-Na

    2015-01-01

    Background: Sensory impairment is a common condition that exerts negative effects on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in the elderly. This study aimed to determine the relationship between sensory impairment and HRQoL and identify sensory-specific differences in the HRQoL of elderly. Methods: This study used data from the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey V (2010–2012), analyzing 5,260 subjects over 60 years of age who completed ophthalmic and otologic examinations. Vision and hearing impairment were measured and classified. HRQoL was determined according to the European QoL five dimension test (EQ-5D). Multivariate logistic regression analysis and analysis of covariance were performed to identify relationships between sensory impairment and HRQoL dimensions as well as differences in HRQoL scores. Results: In the final adjusted multivariate model, there was a statistically higher proportion of those with dual sensory impairment who reported problems with mobility (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 2.30, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.45–5.03), usual activities (aOR 2.32, 95% CI 1.16–4.64), and pain/discomfort among EQ-5D subcategories (aOR 1.79, 95% CI 1.07–2.97). In the EQ-5D dimensions, the means and standard deviations of vision impairment (0.86 [0.01]) and dual sensory impairment (0.84 [0.02]) appeared meaningfully lower than those for no sensory impairment (0.88 [0.00]) or hearing impairment (0.88 [0.01]); P = .02). Conclusion: Sensory impairment reduces HRQoL in the elderly. Improvement of HRQoL in the elderly thus requires regular screening and appropriate management of sensory impairment. PMID:26258089

  6. Housing quality, housing instability, and maternal mental health.

    PubMed

    Suglia, Shakira Franco; Duarte, Cristiane S; Sandel, Megan T

    2011-12-01

    Poor housing conditions and residential instability have been associated with distress among women; however, this association could be the result of other social factors related to housing, such as intimate partner violence (IPV) and economic hardship. We examined associations of housing conditions and instability with maternal depression and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) while accounting for IPV and economic hardship in the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study (N = 2,104). In the third study wave, interviewers rated indoor housing quality, including housing deterioration (e.g., peeling paint and holes in floor) and housing disarray (e.g., dark, crowded, and noisy). Mothers reported whether they had moved more than twice in the past two years, an indicator of housing instability. A screening for depression and GAD was obtained from questions derived from the Composite International Diagnostic Interview-Short Form in the second and third study waves. IPV and economic hardship were assessed through questionnaire. In this sample, 16% of women were classified as having probable depression and 5% as having probable GAD. In adjusted analyses, mothers experiencing housing disarray (odds ratio [OR], 1.3 [95% confidence interval (CI), 1.0, 1.7]) and instability (OR, 1.4 [95% CI, 1.2, 2.3]) were more likely to screen positive for depression. In addition, those experiencing housing instability were more likely to screen positive for GAD (OR 1.9 [95% CI, 1.2, 3.0]) even after adjusting for other social factors. No associations were noted between housing deterioration and maternal mental health. Similar associations were noted when incident cases of probable depression and GAD were examined. Housing instability and disarray, but not deterioration, are associated with screening positive for depression and generalized anxiety among women regardless of other social stressors present in their lives. Housing could potentially present a point of intervention to prevent

  7. The effects of congestions tax on air quality and health

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johansson, Christer; Burman, Lars; Forsberg, Bertil

    -berg since reductions are expected in both respiratory and cardiovascular morbidity. This study demonstrates the importance of not only assessing the effects on air quality limit values, but also to make quantitative estimates of health impacts, in order to justify actions to reduce air pollution.

  8. Quality of Mental Health Care for Nursing Home Residents: A Literature Review

    PubMed Central

    Grabowski, David C.; Aschbrenner, Kelly A.; Rome, Vincent F.; Bartels, Stephen J.

    2010-01-01

    Because of the high proportion of nursing home residents with a mental illness other than dementia, the quality of mental health care in nursing homes is a major clinical and policy issue. The authors apply Donabedian's framework for assessing quality of care based on the triad of structure, process, and outcome-based measures in reviewing the literature on the quality of mental health care in nursing homes. Quality measures used within the literature include mental health consultations and hospitalizations, inappropriate use of medications, and mental health survey deficiencies. Factors related to the resident's welfare (nurse staffing), provider norms (locality), and financial factors (payer mix) were associated with the quality of mental health care. Although future research is necessary, the extant literature suggests that persons with mental illness are frequently admitted to nursing homes and their care is often of poor quality and related to a series of resident and facility factors. PMID:20223943

  9. Body mass index, poor diet quality and health related quality of life are associated with mortality in rural older adults

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In an aging population, potentially modifiable factors impacting mortality such as diet quality, body mass index (BMI), and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) are of interest. Surviving members of the Geisinger Rural Aging Study (GRAS) (n = 5,993; aged =74 years) were contacted in the fall of 20...

  10. An international analysis of cigarette affordability

    PubMed Central

    Blecher, E; van Walbeek, C P

    2004-01-01

    Objective: To investigate how affordable cigarettes are in developed and developing countries, and to calculate by how much the affordability of cigarettes has changed between 1990 and 2001; and secondly, to investigate the relation between cigarette affordability and consumption. Design: Affordability was defined as the cost of cigarettes relative to per capita income. Trends in cigarette affordability, and affordability elasticities of demand, were estimated using regression techniques. Subjects: Seventy countries were investigated, of which 28 are categorised as high income developed countries, while 42 are categorised as developing countries. Cigarette prices were obtained for the main city/cities in the countries. Results: Despite the fact that cigarettes are more expensive in developed countries, the high levels of income make cigarettes more affordable in these countries vis-à-vis developing countries. Of the 28 developed countries, cigarettes became more affordable in 11 and less affordable in 17 countries during the 1990s. Of the 42 developing countries, cigarettes became more affordable in 24 and less affordable in 18 countries. Based on a cross sectional analysis, a 1% increase in the relative income price (the inverse of cigarette affordability) is expected to decrease cigarette consumption by between 0.49–0.57%. Conclusions: Cigarette affordability, more than just the price, determines cigarette consumption. While cigarettes have become more affordable in many developing countries, some developing countries (for example, South Africa, Poland, and Thailand) have implemented strong and effective tobacco control policies, and have been able to decrease cigarette consumption as a result. PMID:15564616

  11. Optics learning through affordable kit

    SciTech Connect

    P, Anusha N E-mail: chitrashaji@gmail.com Shaji, Chitra E-mail: chitrashaji@gmail.com Sharan, Alok E-mail: chitrashaji@gmail.com

    2014-10-15

    An affordable kit which helps to understand some of the optical phenomena qualitatively and quantitatively is presented in this paper. It supplements optics taught in classes. The kit consists of equipments which are available in the market at nominal cost such as laser pointer, lenses, glass plates, razor blades, coins, ball bearing etc. Experiments which come under wave optics (interference and diffraction) and ray optics (reflection and refraction) are explained using this kit.

  12. Optics learning through affordable kit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    P, Anusha N.; Shaji, Chitra; Sharan, Alok

    2014-10-01

    An affordable kit which helps to understand some of the optical phenomena qualitatively and quantitatively is presented in this paper. It supplements optics taught in classes. The kit consists of equipments which are available in the market at nominal cost such as laser pointer, lenses, glass plates, razor blades, coins, ball bearing etc. Experiments which come under wave optics (interference and diffraction) and ray optics (reflection and refraction) are explained using this kit.

  13. 45 CFR 155.320 - Verification process related to eligibility for insurance affordability programs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 45 Public Welfare 1 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Verification process related to eligibility for insurance affordability programs. 155.320 Section 155.320 Public Welfare DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO HEALTH CARE ACCESS EXCHANGE ESTABLISHMENT STANDARDS AND OTHER RELATED STANDARDS UNDER THE AFFORDABLE CARE...

  14. Health-Related Quality of Life in Morphea

    PubMed Central

    Klimas, N.K.; Shedd, A.D.; Bernstein, I.H.; Jacobe, H.

    2014-01-01

    Background Little is known about the health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of patients with morphea, and previous studies have yielded conflicting results. Objectives To determine the impact of morphea on HRQOL and clinical and demographic correlates of HRQOL in adults. Methods Cross sectional survey (n=73) of Morphea in Adults and Children (MAC) cohort. Results Morphea impairs HRQOL in adults. Patients were most impaired by emotional well-being and concerns that the disease will progress to their internal organs. Patients with morphea had worse skin-specific HRQOL than those with non-melanoma skin cancer, vitiligo, and alopecia (lowest P <.0001). Study subjects had significantly worse global HRQOL scores than the general U.S. population for all subscales (all P ≤.004) with the exception of bodily pain. Comorbidity (r =.35-.51, P ≤ .0029 -.0001) and symptoms of pruritus (r =.38 -.64, P ≤.001-.0001) and pain (r =.46-.74, P <.0001) were associated with impairment in multiple domains of skin-specific and global HRQOL. Physician-based measures of disease severity correlated with patient-reported HRQOL. Conclusion Patients with morphea have negative impact on HRQOL particularly if symptoms (pruritus and pain) or concerns regarding internal manifestations are present. Providers should be aware of this when evaluating and treating patients. PMID:25483169

  15. Quality Improvement Education for Health Professionals: A Systematic Review.

    PubMed

    Starr, Stephanie R; Kautz, Jordan M; Sorita, Atsushi; Thompson, Kristine M; Reed, Darcy A; Porter, Barbara L; Mapes, David L; Roberts, Catherine C; Kuo, Daniel; Bora, Pavithra R; Elraiyah, Tarig A; Murad, Mohammad H; Ting, Henry H

    2016-05-01

    Effective quality improvement (QI) education should improve patient care, but many curriculum studies do not include clinical measures. The research team evaluated the prevalence of QI curricula with clinical measures and their association with several curricular features. MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, and ERIC were searched through December 31, 2013. Study selection and data extraction were completed by pairs of reviewers. Of 99 included studies, 11% were randomized, and 53% evaluated clinically relevant measures; 85% were from the United States. The team found that 49% targeted 2 or more health professions, 80% required a QI project, and 65% included coaching. Studies involving interprofessional learners (odds ratio [OR] = 6.55; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.71-15.82), QI projects (OR = 13.60; 95% CI = 2.92-63.29), or coaching (OR = 4.38; 95% CI = 1.79-10.74) were more likely to report clinical measures. A little more than half of the published QI curricula studies included clinical measures; they were more likely to include interprofessional learners, QI projects, and coaching. PMID:25583877

  16. Quality of Health Management Information System for Maternal & Child Health Care in Haryana State, India

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Atul; Rana, Saroj Kumar; Prinja, Shankar; Kumar, Rajesh

    2016-01-01

    Background Despite increasing importance being laid on use of routine data for decision making in India, it has frequently been reported to be riddled with problems. Evidence suggests lack of quality in the health management information system (HMIS), however there is no robust analysis to assess the extent of its inaccuracy. We aim to bridge this gap in evidence by assessing the extent of completeness and quality of HMIS in Haryana state of India. Methods Data on utilization of key maternal and child health (MCH) services were collected using a cross-sectional household survey from 4807 women in 209 Sub-Centre (SC) areas across all 21 districts of Haryana state. Information for same services was also recorded from HMIS records maintained by auxiliary nurse midwives (ANMs) at SCs to check under- or over-recording (Level 1 discordance). Data on utilisation of MCH services from SC ANM records, for a subset of the total women covered in the household survey, were also collected and compared with monthly reports submitted by ANMs to assess over-reporting while report preparation (Level 2 discordance) to paint the complete picture for quality and completeness of routine HMIS. Results Completeness of ANM records for various MCH services ranged from 73% for DPT1 vaccination dates to 94.6% for dates of delivery. Average completeness level for information recorded in HMIS was 88.5%. Extent of Level 1 discordance for iron-folic acid (IFA) supplementation, 3 or more ante-natal care (ANC) visits and 2 Tetanus toxoid (TT) injections was 41%, 16% and 2% respectively. In 48.2% cases, respondents from community as well as HMIS records reported at least one post-natal care (PNC) home visit by ANM. Extent of Level 2 discordance ranged from 1.6% to 6%. These figures were highest for number of women who completed IFA supplementation, contraceptive intra-uterine device insertion and provision of 2nd TT injection during ANC. Conclusions HMIS records for MCH services at sub-centre level

  17. Disparities in Health Care Quality Indicators among US Children with Special Health Care Needs According to Household Language Use

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Stella; Lin, Sue; Strickland, Bonnie

    2015-01-01

    Background: Lower health care utilization and less favorable health outcomes have been demonstrated in children from Non-English Primary Language households (NEPL) in previous studies. This study examines prevalence of health care quality indicators among US children with special health care needs (CSHCN) and their association with household language use. Methods: We used data from the 2009-2010 National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs, restricted to an analytic sample of 40,242 children. Logistic regression models were used to examine the effects of primary household language on the attainment of the 6 health care quality indicators for CSHCN. Results: Compared to CSHCN from English primary language households (EPL), CSHCN from NEPL households had 31% higher odds of not feeling like partners in health care decision-making. They had 67% higher odds of lacking care through a medical home and 42% higher odds of reporting inadequate health insurance. NEPL children had 32% higher odds of not receiving early and continuous screening for special health care needs. NEPL youths had 69% higher odds of not receiving services for transition to adulthood. Minority race/ethnicity, lower income and families other than two biological parents all conferred additional risks to not attaining quality indicators. Publicly insured or uninsured CSHCN were also at higher risk. Conclusions and Global Health Implications: Our study provides compelling evidence that significant disparities exist for CSHCN by primary household language status across all health care quality indicators. Establishment of effective surveillance systems and targeting of outreach programs in both developed and developing countries may lead to improved understanding of health care needs and quality of services and reduction of health disparities for this underserved population.

  18. The Affordable Care Act: implications for cardiothoracic surgery.

    PubMed

    Ferguson, T Bruce; Babb, Joseph A

    2013-01-01

    The Affordable Care Act legislation that was passed by the US Congress and signed into law by President Obama on March 23, 2010 is having a substantial effect throughout all of health care in the United States. Cardiothoracic surgeons, as hospital-based procedural specialists, bring unique assets and certain important liabilities into this massive restructuring of our health care delivery system. This article highlights how each of the 10 titles in the Obamacare legislation might affect our specialty; its collaborative relationship with our cardiovascular, medical specialty, and primary care colleagues; and our clinical practice roles and responsibilities in accountable care organizations and primary care medical homes. This article also addresses the unique assets in clinical data in medicine and quality improvement demonstrated by our specialty that have been used to help shape the current and future landscape. Finally, key resources are identified to allow the cardiothoracic community to monitor the ongoing progress of Obamacare as implementation begins. Keeping abreast of these rapidly changing developments will be an important role for our specialty societies and for practitioners alike going forward. PMID:24673956

  19. Application of quality measurement and performance standards to public health systems: Washington State's approach.

    PubMed

    Mauer, Barbara J; Mason, Marlene; Brown, Bruce

    2004-01-01

    To date, there have been few points of intersection between the quality work done in the general health system and performance review in the public health system. This article describes Washington State's set of performance standards for public health, the accreditation-type evaluation process, and some of the results of the recent performance evaluation against the Washington State Standards. Taking action on the evaluation results could enhance the capacity of public health to join general health systems in Washington State to address several of the priority areas described in Transforming Health Care Quality, the 2003 Institute of Medicine Report. PMID:15235380

  20. A curriculum for training quality scholars to improve the health and health care of veterans and the community at large.

    PubMed

    Splaine, Mark E; Aron, David C; Dittus, Robert S; Kiefe, Catarina I; Landefeld, C Seth; Rosenthal, Gary E; Weeks, William B; Batalden, Paul B

    2002-01-01

    In 1998, the Veterans Health Administration invested in the creation of the Veterans Administration National Quality Scholars Fellowship Program (VAQS) to train physicians in new ways to improve the quality of health care. We describe the curriculum for this program and the lessons learned from our experience to date. The VAQS Fellowship program has developed a core improvement curriculum to train postresidency physicians in the scholarship, research, and teaching of the improvement of health care. The curriculum covers seven domains of knowledge related to improvement: health care as a process; variation and measurement; customer/beneficiary knowledge; leading, following, and making changes in health care; collaboration; social context and accountability; and developing new, locally useful knowledge. We combine specific knowledge about the improvement of health care with the use of adult learning strategies, interactive video, and development of learner competencies. Our program provides insights for medical education to better prepare physicians to participate in and lead the improvement of health care. PMID:12512460

  1. Health Information: Does Quality Count for the Consumer? How Consumers Evaluate the Quality of Health Information Materials across a Variety of Media

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marshall, Lyndsay A.; Williams, Dorothy

    2006-01-01

    An aspect of the information literacy of health information consumers is explored, in particular whether and how they evaluate the quality of health information on the Internet and in printed formats. A total of 32 members of patient support groups in North-East Scotland were recruited to take part in information review groups (a variation of…

  2. Affordability of alcohol and alcohol-related mortality in Belarus.

    PubMed

    Razvodovsky, Yury E

    2013-01-01

    Alcohol abuse has numerous adverse health and social consequences. The consumer response to changes in alcohol affordability is an important issue on alcohol policy debates. Studies from many countries have shown an inverse relationship between alcohol prices and alcohol consumption in the population. There are, however, suggestions that increasing the price of alcohol by rising taxes may have limited effect on alcohol-related problems, associated with long-term heavy drinking. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the relationship between alcohol affordability and alcohol-related mortality rates in post-Soviet Belarus. For this purpose trends in alcohol-related mortality rates (mortality from liver cirrhosis, pancreatitis, alcoholism and alcohol psychoses) and affordability of vodka between 1990 and 2010 were compared. The time series analysis revealed that 1% increase in vodka affordability is associated with an increase in liver cirrhosis mortality of 0,77%, an increase in pancreatitis mortality of 0.53%, an increase in mortality from alcoholism and alcohol psychoses of 0,70%. The major conclusion emerging from this study is that affordability of alcohol is one of the most important predictor of alcohol-related problems in a population. These findings provide additional evidence that decreasing in affordability of alcohol is an effective strategy for reducing alcohol consumption and alcohol-related harm. PMID:23748944

  3. Health promoting schools and children’s oral health related quality of life

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The study objective was to compare children’s oral health related quality of life (OHRQoL) in schools with 6 years of implementation of a health promoting school model in Malaysia, i.e. the Doktor Muda Programme (DMP) and in schools without the DMP. Methods This report was part of a larger study to evaluate the DMP impact on schoolchildren’s oral health knowledge, attitudes, behaviour, caries progression and OHRQoL. It was conducted in Negri Sembilan state. The sample comprised 3455, Year 6 (11–12 year old) children; 1282 from DMP (intervention) and 2173 from non-DMP (control) schools. The Malay Child-OIDP index was used to evaluate children’s levels of oral impacts on 8 daily performances after 6 years of DMP implementation (2006–2011). Prevalence, score, impact intensity, causes and extent of impacts were compared. Chi-square and Mann–Whitney tests were used in the data analysis. Results Overall response rate was 95.1%. Prevalence of overall impacts was 57.8% and 60.8% (mean total impact score was 7.10 and 7.77) in the intervention and control group, respectively. The three most frequently affected performances in both groups were eating, cleaning teeth and emotional stability. Significantly less DMP children had oral impact on cleaning teeth (p = 0.034). The majority of children with impacts in both groups reported ‘very little’ to ‘moderate’ levels of impact intensity. Significantly more DMP children reported having ‘very little’ and ‘little’ levels of impact intensity on cleaning teeth (p = 0.037) and emotional stability (p = 0.020), respectively. Significantly less DMP children reported having ‘very severe’ level of impact intensity on speaking (p = 0.038). The most prevalent cause of impacts in both groups was toothache. Significantly less DMP children reported bleeding gums (p = 0.016) and presence of plaque/calculus as causes of impacts (p = 0.032). About 75% of children with impacts in both groups reported having

  4. Development of Basic Housing Systems for Maximum Affordability

    SciTech Connect

    Aglan, H.; Gibbons, A.; McQueen, T.M.; Morris, C.; Raines, J.; Wendt, R.L.

    1999-04-19

    The ability to provide safe, habitable, comfortable housing for very low income residents within the target budget of $10,000 presents unique design and construction challenges. However, a number of preliminary conclusions have been inferred as being important concepts relative to the study of affordable housing. The term affordable housing can have many meanings and research is needed to define this explicitly. As it is most often used, affordable housing refers to an economic relationship between the price of housing, household income and current interest rates available from a lending institution. There is no direct relationship between architectural style, construction technology or user needs and the concept of affordability. For any home to be affordable, the home owner must balance the combination of housing needs and desires within the limits of an actual budget. There are many misconceptions that affordable housing must be defined as housing for those who cannot afford the free-market price. The concept of affordable housing must also include a component that recognizes the quality of the housing as an important element of the design and construction. In addition, responses to local climate impacts are necessary and are always part of a regional expression of architectural design. By using careful planning and design it may be possible to construct a limited dwelling unit today for a sum of approximately $10,000. Since the organization of the construction process must involve the owner/occupants as well as other volunteers, the project must not only be well conceived, but well developed and coordinated.

  5. Medicare and Medicaid programs; Home Health Prospective Payment System rate update for CY 2014, home health quality reporting requirements, and cost allocation of home health survey expenses. Final rule.

    PubMed

    2013-12-01

    This final rule will update the Home Health Prospective Payment System (HH PPS) rates, including the national, standardized 60-day episode payment rates, the national per-visit rates, the low-utilization payment adjustment (LUPA) add-on, and the non-routine medical supply (NRS) conversion factor under the Medicare prospective payment system for home health agencies (HHAs), effective January 1, 2014. As required by the Affordable Care Act, this rule establishes rebasing adjustments, with a 4-year phase-in, to the national, standardized 60-day episode payment rates; the national per-visit rates; and the NRS conversion factor. In addition, this final rule will remove 170 diagnosis codes from assignment to diagnosis groups within the HH PPS Grouper, effective January 1, 2014. Finally, this rule will establish home health quality reporting requirements for CY 2014 payment and subsequent years and will clarify that a state Medicaid program must provide that, in certifying HHAs, the state's designated survey agency carry out certain other responsibilities that already apply to surveys of nursing facilities and Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ICF-IID), including sharing in the cost of HHA surveys. For that portion of costs attributable to Medicare and Medicaid, we will assign 50 percent to Medicare and 50 percent to Medicaid, the standard method that CMS and states use in the allocation of expenses related to surveys of nursing homes. PMID:24294635

  6. Quality of reproductive health services at commune health stations in Viet Nam: implications for national reproductive health care strategy.

    PubMed

    Ngo, Anh D; Hill, Peter S

    2011-05-01

    This paper presents a qualitative study conducted in 2009 of provider and patient perceptions of primary level reproductive health services provided by commune health stations (CHSs), and the implications for Viet Nam's 2011-2020 National Strategy for Reproductive Health Care. In the three provinces of Thai Nguyen, Thua Thien Hue, and Vinh Long, we interviewed the heads of CHSs, held focus group discussions with midwives and women patients, and observed facilities. Half the 30 CHSs visited were in poor physical condition; the rest were newly renovated. However, the model of service delivery was largely unchanged from ten years before. Many appeared to fall short in meeting patient expectations in terms of modern medical equipment and technology, range of drug supplies, and levels of staff expertise. As a result, many women were turning to private doctors and public hospitals, at least in urban areas, or seeking medication from pharmacies. To make CHS clinics sustainable, promotion of access to reproductive health services should be undertaken concurrently with quality improvement. A responsive payment scheme must also be developed to generate revenues. Efforts should be made to reduce the unnecessary use of more costly services from private clinics and higher level public facilities. PMID:21555086

  7. [Quality improvement of health care services in Croatian emergency medicine].

    PubMed

    Predavec, Sanja; Sogorić, Selma; Jurković, Drazen

    2010-12-01

    Emergency medical services (EMS) in the Republic of Croatia are currently organized as part of the existing health care system and delivered in the form of pre-hospital and hospital EMS. The pre-hospital EMS are delivered by standalone EMS Centers, EMS units set up in community health centers, and by general practitioners working in shifts and on call in remote and scarcely populated areas. In hospitals, each ward usually has its own emergency reception area, and only in a couple of cases there is an integrated emergency admission unit for the entire hospital. The current EMS structure does not meet the basic requirements that would make an EMS system optimal, i.e. equal quality, equal access, effectiveness and appropriate equipment. The EMS Restructuring Project is part of the Croatian health care system reform and is addressed by the National Health Development Strategy 2006-2011. As part of restructuring efforts, the Croatian National Institute of Emergency Medicine, 21 County Institutes of Emergency Medicine and county-level call centers are going to be set up. In addition, the project will introduce the following: integrated emergency admission areas at hospitals; telemedicine as part of emergency medicine; emergency medicine specialty for physicians and additional specialized training for nurses/technicians; separation of emergency and non-emergency transport; standards for vehicles and equipment and guidelines/protocols/algorithms for care. The Croatian National Institute of Emergency Medicine is an umbrella EMS organization. It shapes the EMS in Croatia and proposes, plans, monitors and analyzes EMS actions in Croatia. In addition, it submits a proposal of the Emergency Medicine Network to the minister, sets standards for EMS transport, and coordinates, guides and supervises the work of County Institutes of Emergency Medicine. County Institutes organize and deliver pre-hospital EMS in their counties. Integrated hospital emergency admission units represent a

  8. A Nursing Interaction Approach to Consumer Internet Training on Quality Health Care

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lesley, Marsha L.; Oermann, Marilyn H.; Vander Wal, Jillon S.

    2004-01-01

    This study examined the effectiveness of using the Internet to teach consumers about quality health care, compared consumer definitions of quality health care prior to and following completion of the Internet experience, and compared ratings of learning, satisfaction and value of the Internet instruction between consumers who completed the…

  9. Implementing the patient circle. Call on patients to help improve perceptions of health care quality.

    PubMed

    Ostasiewski, P; Fugate, D L

    1994-01-01

    Adapting the quality-circle concept to a health care setting helped one hospital solve a problem and boosted its image among patients. The "patient circle" technique is one step health care providers can take toward delivering "total customer value," a quality perception that can mean the difference between surviving and thriving in the future. PMID:10154633

  10. Child Health-Related Quality of Life and Parental Social Capital in Greece: An Exploratory Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    El-Dardiry, Giulia; Dimitrakaki, Christine; Tzavara, Chara; Ravens-Sieberer, Ulrike; Tountas, Yannis

    2012-01-01

    In this paper, we examined dimensions of child health-related quality of life in Greece in relation to parental assessments of neighbourhood social capital and social support networks. For the analysis, two main measures were used: (1) child self-reported health-related quality of life in ten dimensions, as measured by the KIDSCREEN questionnaire;…

  11. Rural-Urban Analyses of Health-Related Quality of Life among People with Multiple Sclerosis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Buchanan, Robert J.; Zhu, Li; Schiffer, Randolph; Radin, Dagmar; James, Wesley

    2008-01-01

    Context: Health-related quality of life (HRQOL) is a multi-dimensional construct including aspects of life quality or function that are affected by physical health and symptoms, psychosocial factors, and psychiatric conditions. HRQOL gives a broader measure of the burden of disease than physical impairment or disability levels. Purpose: To…

  12. Health and Quality of Life of Aboriginal Residential School Survivors, Bella Coola Valley, 2001

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barton, Sylvia S.; Thommasen, Harvey V.; Tallio, Bill; Zhang, William; Michalos, Alex C.

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to make comparisons between Aboriginal residential school survivors' perceptions of health status and overall quality of life, and Aboriginal non-residential school attendees, as well as between non-Aboriginals. Data were obtained from thirty-three questions derived from the 2001 Determinants of Health and Quality of…

  13. Quality Improvement Initiative in School-Based Health Centers across New Mexico

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Booker, John M.; Schluter, Janette A.; Carrillo, Kris; McGrath, Jane

    2011-01-01

    Background: Quality improvement principles have been applied extensively to health care organizations, but implementation of quality improvement methods in school-based health centers (SBHCs) remains in a developmental stage with demonstration projects under way in individual states and nationally. Rural areas, such as New Mexico, benefit from the…

  14. QUALITY OF LIFE, FAMILY BEHAVIOR, AND HEALTH OUTCOMES IN CHILDREN WITH TYPE 2 DIABETES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Quality of life of youth and disease-specific family behavior have both been shown to be important in the study of health outcomes across a broad range of chronic physical conditions of childhood. Very few studies have addressed quality of life, the family’s role in diabetes management, and health o...

  15. Perceptions of Neighborhood Problems and Health-Related Quality of Life

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Erin M.; Shepherd, Daniel; Welch, David; Dirks, Kim N.; McBride, David

    2012-01-01

    This article examines the association between perceptions of neighborhood problems and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in a sample of New Zealand residents (n = 692). A modified version of the Neighborhood Problems Scale (originally developed by Steptoe and Feldman, 2001) and the World Health Organization Quality of Life (WHOQOL-BREF) were…

  16. Health-Related Quality of Life among Abused Women One Year after Leaving a Violent Partner

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alsaker, Kjersti; Moen, Bente E.; Kristoffersen, Kjell

    2008-01-01

    This is the first follow up study measuring quality of life among abused women who have left their abusive partner. The women (n = 22) answered a questionnaire while staying at women's shelter and one year later. The aim was to examine long-term effects of intimate partner violence against women on health-related quality of life. Health-related…

  17. Quality Health Care for People with Developmental Disabilities: A Guide for Parents and Other Caregivers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pfaffinger, Kathleen M.; Nelson, Richard P.

    Starting with the premise that all people have a right to quality health care, this guide emphasizes that assisting people with developmental disabilities to obtain health care and maintain healthy life styles will enhance the quality of their lives at home and in the community. The guide consists of four sections. A section on obtaining care…

  18. Health-related quality of life in migrant preschool children

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Minority groups have a lower health-related quality of life (HRQOL), but there is little information if this finding also applies to children. In this study, we compared HRQOL between young children with and without migrant parents. Methods Two cross-sectional studies of culturally diverse preschool populations in Switzerland: Ballabeina (40 preschools, 258 girls and 232 boys aged 4 to 6 years) and Youp’là Bouge (58 child care centers, 453 girls and 522 boys aged 2 to 4 years). Most children were born in Switzerland (Ballabeina: 92.3%; Youp’là Bouge: 93.7%). Number of migrant parents was considered as the main exposure. HRQOL was measured using the 23-item Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory. Results Children of migrant parents had a significantly lower HRQOL total score (mean ± SD, Ballabeina: 84.2 ± 9.1; 82.7 ± 9.6 and 81.7 ± 11.7 for children with none, one or two migrant parents, respectively; Youp’là Bouge: 83.8 ± 8.6; 82.9 ± 9.5; 80.7 ± 11.7, all p < 0.05). Similar results were found in Ballabeina and Youp’là Bouge for social, school and physical functioning (all p < 0.05), but not for emotional functioning. The differences in HRQOL measures were partly mediated by children’s place of birth, parental education, paternal occupational level, children’s BMI, screen time and physical activity in one study (Ballabeina), but not in the other (Youp’là Bouge). Conclusion In preschoolers, children of migrant parents have lower HRQOL than children of non-migrant parents. These differences are only partly mediated by other sociocultural characteristics or lifestyle behavior. These families may need assistance to prevent further inequalities. PMID:23617686

  19. Characterizing the Quality Workforce in Private U.S. Child and Family Behavioral Health Agencies.

    PubMed

    McMillen, J Curtis; Raffol, Matthew

    2016-09-01

    Behavioral health agencies have been encouraged to monitor performance and improve service quality. This paper characterizes the workforce charged with these tasks through a national survey of 238 behavioral health quality professionals. A latent class analysis suggests only 30 % of these workers report skills in both basic research and quality-specific skills. Respondents wanted to learn a variety of research and data analytic skills. The results call into question the quality of data collected in behavioral health agencies and the conclusions agencies are drawing from their data. Professional school and continuing education programs are needed to prepare this workforce. PMID:26108643

  20. Methodological quality of systematic reviews and clinical trials on women's health published in a Brazilian evidence-based health journal

    PubMed Central

    Macedo, Cristiane Rufino; Riera, Rachel; Torloni, Maria Regina

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: To assess the quality of systematic reviews and clinical trials on women's health recently published in a Brazilian evidence-based health journal. METHOD: All systematic reviews and clinical trials on women's health published in the last five years in the Brazilian Journal of Evidence-based Health were retrieved. Two independent reviewers critically assessed the methodological quality of reviews and trials using AMSTAR and the Cochrane Risk of Bias Table, respectively. RESULTS: Systematic reviews and clinical trials accounted for less than 10% of the 61 original studies on women's health published in the São Paulo Medical Journal over the last five years. All five reviews were considered to be of moderate quality; the worst domains were publication bias and the appropriate use of study quality in formulating conclusions. All three clinical trials were judged to have a high risk of bias. The participant blinding, personnel and outcome assessors and allocation concealment domains had the worst scores. CONCLUSIONS: Most of the systematic reviews and clinical trials on women's health recently published in a Brazilian evidence-based journal are of low to moderate quality. The quality of these types of studies needs improvement. PMID:23778332

  1. SURVEY OF INDOOR AIR QUALITY HEALTH CRITERIA AND STANDARDS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The report is a survey of the state-of-the-art of the scientific studies on indoor air quality criteria and standards. The principal subject is the indoor nonworkplace environment. Indoor air quality standards are classified into three types: (1) maximum allowable air quality sta...

  2. Health-Related Quality of Life of Former Lead Workers in Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Teixeira, Martha Carvalho Pereira; Carvalho, Fernando Martins; Lins, Liliane

    2015-01-01

    Little is known about the health-related quality of life of former lead workers. Using the Short-Form 36 Questionnaire (SF-36), a cross-section design study evaluated the health-related quality of life of 186 former workers of a lead smelter that operated in Santo Amaro da Purificação, Brazil, from 1960 to 1993, when it closed down. The smelter had very poor occupational and environmental hygiene standards. The health-related quality of life of former lead workers was low, compared to population-based and other nosological groups from Brazil. Former lead workers who indicated metal poisoning, difficulty getting another job and who could not get another job after dismissal by the smelter presented poorer health-related quality of life. Former lead workers with poor health-related quality of life form part of the huge occupational liability left by the Santo Amaro lead smelter. PMID:26540067

  3. Affordable access to care for the undocumented.

    PubMed

    Rosen, Dennis

    2014-09-01

    How do you tell a sick kid that nobody cares if he gets better? That's an exaggeration, of course, but it is the fundamental message our society sends when we tell him that, because he and his family are undocumented immigrants, we are unwilling to extend them access to affordable and reliable health insurance. One major shortcoming of the Affordable Care Act is its specific exclusion of the almost twelve million undocumented immigrants-including millions of children-in this country from access to the state and federal insurance exchanges where coverage can be purchased. It is true that providing undocumented immigrants access to the exchanges and subsidies mandated by the ACA would require additional funding. However, a recent analysis in California has found that the costs of expanding state-supported care to include undocumented immigrants would largely be offset by the increased state sales tax revenue paid by managed care organizations and by reduced spending at the county level on emergency-room and hospital care of the uninsured. PMID:25231664

  4. School quality and the education-health relationship: evidence from blacks in segregated schools.

    PubMed

    Frisvold, David; Golberstein, Ezra

    2011-12-01

    In this paper, we estimate the effect of school quality on the relationship between schooling and health outcomes using the substantial improvements in the quality of schools attended by black students in the segregated southern states during the mid-1900s as a source of identifying variation. Using data from the National Health Interview Survey, our results suggest that improvements in school quality, measured as the pupil-teacher ratio, average teachers' wage, and length of the school year, amplify the beneficial effects of education on several measures of health in later life, including self-rated health, smoking, obesity, and mortality. PMID:21893357

  5. Federal Home Visiting under the Affordable Care Act

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Strader, Kathleen; Counts, Jacqueline; Filene, Jill

    2013-01-01

    The Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) Program is part of The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and provides $1.5 billion over 5 years to states, territories, and tribes with the goal of delivering evidence-based home visiting services as part of a high-quality, comprehensive early childhood system that promotes…

  6. Smoking Bans in Affordable Housing Benefit All

    MedlinePlus

    ... 160501.html Smoking Bans in Affordable Housing Benefit All: Study Secondhand exposure lowered, and smokers more likely ... residents of eight affordable housing properties in Minnesota. All the properties prohibited smoking indoors and three also ...

  7. Mental Health, Quality of Life, and Health Functioning in Women Veterans: Differential Outcomes Associated with Military and Civilian Sexual Assault

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Suris, Alina; Lind, Lisa; Kashner, T. Michael; Borman, Patricia D.

    2007-01-01

    The present study examined psychiatric, physical, and quality-of-life functioning in a sample of 270 women veterans receiving outpatient treatment at a Veterans Affairs medical center. Participants were interviewed regarding their civilian (CSA) and military sexual assault (MSA) histories, and data regarding quality of life and health outcomes…

  8. Accountability and quality in managed care: implications for health care practitioners.

    PubMed

    Dobalian, A; Rivers, P A

    1998-01-01

    The development of managed care plans is the most dramatic change in the USA's health care system in recent decades. Despite the widespread growth, society is increasingly concerned with the quality of managed care programs. This article addresses the regulatory pressures that are being placed on managed care organisations and examines what health care practitioners can do to minimize the impact of increased regulation. We look at the major factors that are likely to bring about changes in the health care sector, and predict how these changes will affect the quality of health care that is being delivered in the near future. Addresses how quality can become and remain the primary factor in the delivery of health care services. Finally, concludes that greater involvement by the federal government is necessary to protect consumers' rights, and ensure better quality health care from managed care programs. PMID:10185327

  9. Quality of maternal healthcare in India: Has the National Rural Health Mission made a difference?

    PubMed Central

    Nair, Harish; Panda, Rajmohan

    2011-01-01

    Despite a five decade old Family Welfare programme, India still continues to contribute almost a quarter of the global estimates of maternal morbidity and mortality. Quality aspects in maternal health care have long been ignored in the Indian public health system. It is only with the launch of the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) that quality of care has been accorded due recognition at the policy and planning levels of the national health programmes. Using review of available data sources and published literature, this paper aims to examine the scenario of quality of care in maternal health over the last decade and the impact of NRHM initiatives on the same. While NRHM has made efforts to address lacunae associated with quality of maternal care in the public health system, there is much scope for improvement. PMID:23198105

  10. Public health interactions with the public: can quality be assured? "This call may be monitored for quality assurance purposes".

    PubMed

    Berkelman, Ruth

    2004-01-01

    I describe what happened when a citizen called her state health department "after-hours" to report possible contamination of food at a commercial establishment. The call, inadequately handled by the health department, illustrates the need to assure quality of the public health responses to calls on a 24 hour, 7-day week basis. I examine possible reasons for the poor response. Health departments should consider training for those assigned to handle phone calls from the public, such as that provided to poison control center personnel. In addition, a quality assurance program should routinely assess the adequacy of public health responses. As medical care is available on an emergency basis, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, emergency services for prevention of illness in the population should be available to the public at all times with the response provided by appropriately trained individuals. PMID:15134134

  11. Health-related quality of life in early breast cancer.

    PubMed

    Groenvold, Mogens

    2010-09-01

    The treatment of primary breast cancer usually consists of surgery often followed by adjuvant therapy (radiotherapy, chemotherapy, hormonal treatment, etc.) to reduce the risk of recurrence. The cancer diagnosis and the treatments may have significant impact on the patients' quality of life. This thesis deals with scientific aspects and clinical results of a study aimed at assessing the impact of breast cancer (and its treatment) on the patients' quality of life. Studies such as this assessing the problems and symptoms experienced by the patients are often referred to as health-related quality of life (HRQL) research. HRQL research deals with subjective experiences and raises challenging, scientific questions. Therefore, much attention was directed towards methodological issues in this clinically motivated project. The study was a prospective, longitudinal, questionnaire-based investigation of women with newly diagnosed breast cancer registered in the Danish Breast Cancer Co-operative Group's DBCG 89 Program. The patients were sub-divided into low-risk and high-risk patients. High-risk patients were offered randomisation in one of three randomised adjuvant therapy trials involving chemotherapy, ovarian ablation, and endocrine therapy. After a literature study and interviews with breast cancer patients, a questionnaire was composed that included two widely used standard questionnaires (EORTC QLQ-C30 and Hospital Anxiety and Depression (HAD) Scale) and a DBCG 89 Questionnaire developed for this study. A total of 1,898 eligible patients were invited by post to participate in the study involving six assessments over a 2-year period, and 1,713 patients (90%) completed the first questionnaire. Furthermore, a questionnaire was sent to 872 women selected at random from the general population; 608 (70%) responded. The multi-item scales of the two standard questionnaires were analysed for so-called differential item functioning (DIF) in order to investigate whether the

  12. Measuring quality of life in mental health: Are we asking the right questions?

    PubMed Central

    Connell, Janice; O'Cathain, Alicia; Brazier, John

    2014-01-01

    Measuring quality-adjusted-life years using generic preference-based quality of life measures is common practice when evaluating health interventions. However, there are concerns that measures in common use, such as the EQ-5D and SF-6D, focus overly on physical health and therefore may not be appropriate for measuring quality of life for people with mental health problems. The aim of this research was to identify the domains of quality of life that are important to people with mental health problems in order to assess the content validity of these generic measures. Qualitative semi-structured interviews were conducted with 19 people, recruited from UK mental health services, with a broad range of mental health problems at varying levels of severity. This complemented a previous systematic review and thematic synthesis of qualitative studies on the same topic. Seven domains important to quality of life for people with mental health problems were identified: well-being and ill-being; relationships and a sense of belonging; activity; self-perception; autonomy, hope and hopelessness; and physical health. These were consistent with the systematic review, with the addition of physical health as a domain, and revealed a differing emphasis on the positive and negative aspects of quality of life according to the severity of the mental health problems. We conclude that the content of existing generic preference-based measures of health do not cover this domain space well. Additionally, because people may experience substantial improvements in their quality of life without registering on the positive end of a quality of life scale, it is important that the full spectrum of negative through to positive aspects of each domain are included in any quality of life measure. PMID:25194472

  13. Measuring quality of life in mental health: are we asking the right questions?

    PubMed

    Connell, Janice; O'Cathain, Alicia; Brazier, John

    2014-11-01

    Measuring quality-adjusted-life years using generic preference-based quality of life measures is common practice when evaluating health interventions. However, there are concerns that measures in common use, such as the EQ-5D and SF-6D, focus overly on physical health and therefore may not be appropriate for measuring quality of life for people with mental health problems. The aim of this research was to identify the domains of quality of life that are important to people with mental health problems in order to assess the content validity of these generic measures. Qualitative semi-structured interviews were conducted with 19 people, recruited from UK mental health services, with a broad range of mental health problems at varying levels of severity. This complemented a previous systematic review and thematic synthesis of qualitative studies on the same topic. Seven domains important to quality of life for people with mental health problems were identified: well-being and ill-being; relationships and a sense of belonging; activity; self-perception; autonomy, hope and hopelessness; and physical health. These were consistent with the systematic review, with the addition of physical health as a domain, and revealed a differing emphasis on the positive and negative aspects of quality of life according to the severity of the mental health problems. We conclude that the content of existing generic preference-based measures of health do not cover this domain space well. Additionally, because people may experience substantial improvements in their quality of life without registering on the positive end of a quality of life scale, it is important that the full spectrum of negative through to positive aspects of each domain are included in any quality of life measure. PMID:25194472

  14. Quality target negotiation in health care: evidence from the English NHS.

    PubMed

    Fichera, Eleonora; Gravelle, Hugh; Pezzino, Mario; Sutton, Matt

    2016-09-01

    We examine how public sector third-party purchasers and hospitals negotiate quality targets when a fixed proportion of hospital revenue is required to be linked to quality. We develop a bargaining model linking the number of quality targets to purchaser and hospital characteristics. Using data extracted from 153 contracts for acute hospital services in England in 2010/2011, we find that the number of quality targets is associated with the purchaser's population health and its budget, the hospital type, whether the purchaser delegated negotiation to an agency, and the quality targets imposed by the supervising regional health authority. PMID:26362867

  15. Systems for Quality Assurance in Mental Health Services: A Strategy for Improvement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jessee, William F.; Morgan-Williams, Gale

    1987-01-01

    Discusses need for systems-based approach to quality assurance in mental health services, which can provide useful information to administrators and practitioners as they work to maintain or improve quality of care provided to patients. Introduces generic model for monitoring and evaluating quality of care and discusses potential barriers to its…

  16. The Relative Contribution of Health Status and Quality of Life Domains in Subjective Health in Old Age

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prieto-Flores, Maria-Eugenia; Moreno-Jimenez, Antonio; Fernandez-Mayoralas, Gloria; Rojo-Perez, Fermina; Forjaz, Maria Joao

    2012-01-01

    To analyze the influence of different health status dimensions and quality of life (QoL) domains on older adults' subjective health, and to assess the role that residential satisfaction plays in these relationships. A QoL survey was conducted on a representative sample of the community-dwelling older adult population in Madrid province (Spain).…

  17. Assessing Health-Related Quality of Life in Northern Plains American Indians: Prominence of Physical Activity as a Health Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poltavski, Dmitri; Holm, Jeffrey; Vogeltanz-Holm, Nancy; McDonald, Leander

    2010-01-01

    Associations of behavioral health risks and healthy behaviors with self-reported health-related quality of life measures were investigated in a Northern Plains American Indian sample. Participants were surveyed in person using the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey. The results showed that regular physical activity was significantly…

  18. Primary health-care nurses and Internet health information-seeking: Access, barriers and quality checks.

    PubMed

    Gilmour, Jean; Strong, Alison; Chan, Helen; Hanna, Sue; Huntington, Annette

    2016-02-01

    Online information is a critical resource for evidence-based practice and patient education. This study aimed to establish New Zealand nurses' access and evaluation of online health information in the primary care context using a postal questionnaire survey; there were 630 respondents from a random sample of 931 nurses. The majority of respondents were satisfied with work access to online information (84.5%, n = 501) and searched for online information at least several times a week (57.5%, n = 343). The major barrier to online information seeking was insufficient time, but 68 respondents had no work online information access. The level of nursing qualification was significantly correlated with computer confidence and information quality checking. A range of information evaluation approaches was used. Most nurses in study accessed and evaluated Internet information in contrast to the findings of earlier studies, but there were barriers preventing universal integration into practice. PMID:25355072

  19. Perceiving Affordances for Fitting through Apertures

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ishak, Shaziela; Adolph, Karen E.; Lin, Grace C.

    2008-01-01

    Affordances--possibilities for action--are constrained by the match between actors and their environments. For motor decisions to be adaptive, affordances must be detected accurately. Three experiments examined the correspondence between motor decisions and affordances as participants reached through apertures of varying size. A psychophysical…

  20. Quality Measures For Mental Health And Substance Use: Gaps, Opportunities, And Challenges.

    PubMed

    Pincus, Harold Alan; Scholle, Sarah Hudson; Spaeth-Rublee, Brigitta; Hepner, Kimberly A; Brown, Jonathan

    2016-06-01

    Following up on its Crossing the Quality Chasm report, in 2006 the Institute of Medicine issued a report that included sweeping recommendations to improve the quality of behavioral health care in the United States. To date, few of those recommendations have been implemented, and there is little evidence that behavioral health care quality has improved significantly over the past ten years. However, the advent of health care reform, parity of insurance coverage, and growing recognition of the impact of behavioral health disorders on population health and health care costs have created new demands and opportunities for expanded and innovative strategies to assess the quality of care for this patient population. We provide an overview of the current state of quality measurement in behavioral health, identify key priorities for measure development, and describe the most important challenges. We recommend a coordinated plan that would boost investment in developing, evaluating, and implementing behavioral health quality measures; conduct research to develop the evidence necessary to support a more robust set of measures; overcome barriers to the improvement and linking of data sources; and expand efforts to build the capacity of the clinical workforce, in partnership with consumers, to improve quality. PMID:27269015

  1. Voters and the Affordable Care Act in the 2014 election.

    PubMed

    Blendon, Robert J; Benson, John M

    2014-11-13

    In this analysis of data from 27 public opinion polls, the authors examine the role of the Affordable Care Act in the 2014 congressional elections. The outcome of the elections is likely to influence implementation of the ACA and future U.S. health care policy. PMID:25353968

  2. 45 CFR 158.150 - Activities that improve health care quality.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 45 Public Welfare 1 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Activities that improve health care quality. 158.150 Section 158.150 Public Welfare Department of Health and Human Services REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO HEALTH CARE ACCESS ISSUER USE OF PREMIUM REVENUE: REPORTING AND REBATE REQUIREMENTS Disclosure...

  3. 45 CFR 158.150 - Activities that improve health care quality.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 45 Public Welfare 1 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Activities that improve health care quality. 158.150 Section 158.150 Public Welfare DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO HEALTH CARE ACCESS ISSUER USE OF PREMIUM REVENUE: REPORTING AND REBATE REQUIREMENTS Disclosure...

  4. 45 CFR 158.150 - Activities that improve health care quality.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 45 Public Welfare 1 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Activities that improve health care quality. 158.150 Section 158.150 Public Welfare DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO HEALTH CARE ACCESS ISSUER USE OF PREMIUM REVENUE: REPORTING AND REBATE REQUIREMENTS Disclosure...

  5. 45 CFR 158.150 - Activities that improve health care quality.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 45 Public Welfare 1 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Activities that improve health care quality. 158.150 Section 158.150 Public Welfare DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO HEALTH CARE ACCESS ISSUER USE OF PREMIUM REVENUE: REPORTING AND REBATE REQUIREMENTS Disclosure...

  6. Techniques for Developing Health Quality of Life Scales for Point of Service Use

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Young-Sun; Douglas, Jeffrey; Chewning, Betty

    2007-01-01

    Clinical and health policy research frequently involves health status measurement using generic or disease specific instruments. These instruments are generally developed to arrive at several scales, each measuring a distinct domain of health quality of life (HQOL). Clinical settings are starting to explore how to integrate patient perspectives of…

  7. English Language Proficiency and Health-Related Quality of Life among Chinese and Korean Immigrant Elders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mui, Ada C.; Kang, Suk-Young; Kang, Dooyeon; Domanski, Margaret Dietz

    2007-01-01

    This study examined the association between English language proficiency and health outcomes in a regional probability sample (n = 205) of elderly Chinese and Korean immigrants. Data support that these two Asian ethnic subgroups differ in English proficiency and health-related quality of life. Chinese and Korean elders had poorer health than the…

  8. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: what every provider of gynecologic oncology care should know.

    PubMed

    Duska, Linda R; Engelhard, Carolyn L

    2013-06-01

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2010. While initial implementation of the law began shortly thereafter, the full implementation will take place over the next few years. With respect to cancer care, the act was intended to make care more accessible, affordable, and comprehensive across different parts of the country. For our cancer patients and our practices, the ACA has implications that are both positive and negative. The Medicaid expansion and access to insurance exchanges are intended to increase the number of insured patients and thus improve access to care, but many states have decided to opt out of the Medicaid program and in these states access problems will persist. Screening programs will be put in place for insured patients but may supplant federally funded programs that are currently in place for uninsured patients and may not follow current screening guidelines. Both hospice and home health providers will be asked to provide more services with less funding, and quality measures, including readmission rates, will factor into reimbursement. Insured patients will have access to all phases of clinical trial research. There is a need for us as providers of Gynecologic Oncology care to be active in the implementation of the ACA in order to ensure that our patients and our practices can survive and benefit from the changes in health care reimbursement, with the ultimate goals of improving access to care and quality while reducing unsustainable costs. PMID:23500090

  9. Patients' perceptions of service quality dimensions: an empirical examination of health care in New Zealand.

    PubMed

    Clemes, M D; Ozanne, L K; Laurensen, W L

    2001-01-01

    The 1984 liberalization of the New Zealand economy has resulted in a health care sector that has become very competitive (Zwier and Clarke, 1999). The private sector is now able to supply health care services and, as a result, a greater value is being placed on patient satisfaction (Zwier and Clarke, 1999). However, despite the increasing focus on customer satisfaction, research into health care patients' perceptions of the dimensions of service quality is scarce. This can be problematic, as quality of care is an essential issue in the strategic marketing of health care services (Turner and Pol, 1995). This study takes a step towards addressing this deficiency by identifying patients' perceptions of the dimensions of service quality in health care. The findings of this study are based on the empirical analysis of a sample of 389 respondents interviewed by telephone. The findings indicate that the service quality dimensions identified in this health care specific study differ in number and dimensional structure from the widely adopted service quality dimensions first identified by Parasuraman, Berry and Zeithaml (1988): reliability, responsiveness, assurance, empathy and tangibles. The service quality dimensions identified in this study were: reliability, tangibles, assurance, empathy, food, access, outcome, admission, discharge and responsiveness. In addition, health care patients perceive the service quality dimensions relating to the core product in health care delivery (for example, outcome and reliability) as more important than the service quality dimensions relating to the peripheral product in health care delivery (for example, food, access and tangibles). Finally, the results of this study suggest that patients with different geographic, demographic, and behavioristic characteristics have different needs and wants during health care delivery and therefore perceive different service quality dimensions as important. PMID:11727291

  10. Creating a Patient-Centered Health Care Delivery System: A Systematic Review of Health Care Quality From the Patient Perspective.

    PubMed

    Mohammed, Khaled; Nolan, Margaret B; Rajjo, Tamim; Shah, Nilay D; Prokop, Larry J; Varkey, Prathibha; Murad, Mohammad H

    2016-01-01

    Patient experience is one of key domains of value-based purchasing that can serve as a measure of quality and be used to improve the delivery of health services. The aims of this study are to explore patient perceptions of quality of health care and to understand how perceptions may differ by settings and condition. A systematic review of multiple databases was conducted for studies targeting patient perceptions of quality of care. Two reviewers screened and extracted data independently. Data synthesis was performed following a meta-narrative approach. A total of 36 studies were included that identified 10 quality dimensions perceived by patients: communication, access, shared decision making, provider knowledge and skills, physical environment, patient education, electronic medical record, pain control, discharge process, and preventive services. These dimensions can be used in planning and evaluating health care delivery. Future research should evaluate the effect of interventions targeting patient experience on patient outcomes. PMID:25082873

  11. The Impact of eHealth on the Quality and Safety of Health Care: A Systematic Overview

    PubMed Central

    Black, Ashly D.; Car, Josip; Pagliari, Claudia; Anandan, Chantelle; Cresswell, Kathrin; Bokun, Tomislav; McKinstry, Brian; Procter, Rob; Majeed, Azeem; Sheikh, Aziz

    2011-01-01

    Background There is considerable international interest in exploiting the potential of digital solutions to enhance the quality and safety of health care. Implementations of transformative eHealth technologies are underway globally, often at very considerable cost. In order to assess the impact of eHealth solutions on the quality and safety of health care, and to inform policy decisions on eHealth deployments, we undertook a systematic review of systematic reviews assessing the effectiveness and consequences of various eHealth technologies on the quality and safety of care. Methods and Findings We developed novel search strategies, conceptual maps of health care quality, safety, and eHealth interventions, and then systematically identified, scrutinised, and synthesised the systematic review literature. Major biomedical databases were searched to identify systematic reviews published between 1997 and 2010. Related theoretical, methodological, and technical material was also reviewed. We identified 53 systematic reviews that focused on assessing the impact of eHealth interventions on the quality and/or safety of health care and 55 supplementary systematic reviews providing relevant supportive information. This systematic review literature was found to be generally of substandard quality with regards to methodology, reporting, and utility. We thematically categorised eHealth technologies into three main areas: (1) storing, managing, and transmission of data; (2) clinical decision support; and (3) facilitating care from a distance. We found that despite support from policymakers, there was relatively little empirical evidence to substantiate many of the claims made in relation to these technologies. Whether the success of those relatively few solutions identified to improve quality and safety would continue if these were deployed beyond the contexts in which they were originally developed, has yet to be established. Importantly, best practice guidelines in effective

  12. The population value of quality indicator reporting: a framework for prioritizing health care performance measures.

    PubMed

    Meltzer, David O; Chung, Jeanette W

    2014-01-01

    The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports contain more than 250 quality indicators, such as whether a patient with a suspected heart attack received an aspirin. The Department of Health and Human Services National Quality Measures Clearinghouse identifies more than 2,100 such indicators. Because resources for making quality improvements are limited, there is a need to prioritize among these indicators. We propose an approach to assess how reporting specific quality indicators would change care to improve the length and quality of life of the US population. Using thirteen AHRQ quality indicators with readily available data on the benefits of indicator reporting, we found that seven of them account for 93 percent of total benefits, while the remaining six account for only 7 percent of total benefits. Use of a framework such as this could focus resources on indicators having the greatest expected impact on population health. PMID:24395945

  13. Cognitive Function, Mental Health, and Health-related Quality of Life after Lung Transplantation

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, David G.; Christie, Jason D.; Anderson, Brian J.; Diamond, Joshua M.; Judy, Ryan P.; Shah, Rupal J.; Cantu, Edward; Bellamy, Scarlett L.; Blumenthal, Nancy P.; Demissie, Ejigayehu; Hopkins, Ramona O.

    2014-01-01

    Rationale: Cognitive and psychiatric impairments are threats to functional independence, general health, and quality of life. Evidence regarding these outcomes after lung transplantation is limited. Objectives: Determine the frequency of cognitive and psychiatric impairment after lung transplantation and identify potential factors associated with cognitive impairment after lung transplantation. Methods: In a retrospective cohort study, we assessed cognitive function, mental health, and health-related quality of life using a validated battery of standardized tests in 42 subjects post-transplantation. The battery assessed cognition, depression, anxiety, resilience, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Cognitive function was assessed using the Montreal Cognitive Assessment, a validated screening test with a range of 0 to 30. We hypothesized that cognitive function post-transplantation would be associated with type of transplant, cardiopulmonary bypass, primary graft dysfunction, allograft ischemic time, and physical therapy post-transplantation. We used multivariable linear regression to examine the relationship between candidate risk factors and cognitive function post-transplantation. Measurements and Main Results: Mild cognitive impairment (score, 18–25) was observed in 67% of post-transplant subjects (95% confidence interval [CI]: 50–80%) and moderate cognitive impairment (score, 10–17) was observed in 5% (95% CI, 1–16%) of post-transplant subjects. Symptoms of moderate to severe anxiety and depression were observed in 21 and 3% of post-transplant subjects, respectively. No transplant recipients reported symptoms of PTSD. Higher resilience correlated with less psychological distress in the domains of depression (P < 0.001) and PTSD (P = 0.02). Prolonged graft ischemic time was independently associated with worse cognitive performance after lung transplantation (P = 0.001). The functional gain in 6-minute-walk distance achieved at the end of post

  14. Energy efficient affordable housing. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    1995-07-01

    In 1994, the Southface Energy Institute, working with support from US DOE, initiated a program to provide technical assistance to nonprofit organizations developing affordable housing in the Olympic target communities of Atlanta. The specific project goals were: Identify the barriers that nonprofit affordable housing providers face in increasing the energy and resource efficiency of affordable housing; Assist them in developing the resources to overcome these barriers; Develop specific technical materials and program models that will enable these affordable housing groups to continue to improve the energy efficiency of their programs; and, To transfer the program materials to other affordable housing providers. This report summarizes the progress made in each of these areas.

  15. 29 CFR 1977.12 - Exercise of any right afforded by the Act.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 29 Labor 9 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Exercise of any right afforded by the Act. 1977.12 Section... OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ACT OF 1970 Specific Protections § 1977.12 Exercise of any right afforded by the... because of the exercise “of any right afforded by this Act.” Certain rights are explicitly provided in...

  16. 29 CFR 1977.12 - Exercise of any right afforded by the Act.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 29 Labor 9 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Exercise of any right afforded by the Act. 1977.12 Section... OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ACT OF 1970 Specific Protections § 1977.12 Exercise of any right afforded by the... because of the exercise “of any right afforded by this Act.” Certain rights are explicitly provided in...

  17. 29 CFR 1977.12 - Exercise of any right afforded by the Act.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 29 Labor 9 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Exercise of any right afforded by the Act. 1977.12 Section... OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ACT OF 1970 Specific Protections § 1977.12 Exercise of any right afforded by the... because of the exercise “of any right afforded by this Act.” Certain rights are explicitly provided in...

  18. 29 CFR 1977.12 - Exercise of any right afforded by the Act.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 29 Labor 9 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Exercise of any right afforded by the Act. 1977.12 Section... OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ACT OF 1970 Specific Protections § 1977.12 Exercise of any right afforded by the... because of the exercise “of any right afforded by this Act.” Certain rights are explicitly provided in...

  19. 29 CFR 1977.12 - Exercise of any right afforded by the Act.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 29 Labor 9 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Exercise of any right afforded by the Act. 1977.12 Section... OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ACT OF 1970 Specific Protections § 1977.12 Exercise of any right afforded by the... because of the exercise “of any right afforded by this Act.” Certain rights are explicitly provided in...

  20. Assuring the quality of health care for older persons. An expert panel's priorities.

    PubMed

    Fink, A; Siu, A L; Brook, R H; Park, R E; Solomon, D H

    1987-10-01

    To select topics for quality assurance activities focusing on older patients, we convened a 14-member panel of physicians and experts in quality assurance. In two rounds of ratings, panelists rated 42 medical conditions (eg, pneumonia) in terms of their effects on patient outcomes, the availability of beneficial interventions, and the health benefits from improving current quality. They rated 27 health services (eg, adult day-care) on similar dimensions. The feasibility of doing quality assurance work on each condition and service also was rated. Using the ratings, the conditions selected for quality assurance work were congestive heart failure, hypertension, pneumonia, breast cancer, adverse effects of drugs, incontinence, and depression. Health care services selected were hospital discharge planning, acute inpatient care for the frail elderly, long-term-care facilities (intermediate-care facilities and skilled nursing facilities), home health care services, and case management. PMID:3656600

  1. The Quality of Family Relationships and Maternal Health Care Use in India

    PubMed Central

    Allendorf, Keera

    2016-01-01

    Marital quality is well established as a determinant of health in Western contexts, yet the importance of relationship quality to health in non-Western contexts is largely limited to a focus on domestic violence. Using the Women's Reproductive Histories Survey, this paper examines whether women with higher quality family relationships are more likely to use maternal health care in Madhya Pradesh, India. Results show that among nuclear families, women with better marital relationships are more likely to use antenatal care and deliver in a health facility. Among joint families, women who have better relationships with their in-laws are more likely to use antenatal care. The results further suggest that women's agency mediates some, but not all, of the effect of relationship quality on maternal health care use. PMID:21465727

  2. Health benefits from improved outdoor air quality and intervention in China.

    PubMed

    Li, Shanshan; Williams, Gail; Guo, Yuming

    2016-07-01

    China is at its most critical stage of outdoor air quality management. In order to prevent further deterioration of air quality and to protect human health, the Chinese government has made a series of attempts to reduce ambient air pollution. Unlike previous literature reviews on the widespread hazards of air pollution on health, this review article firstly summarized the existing evidence of human health benefits from intermittently improved outdoor air quality and intervention in China. Contents of this paper provide concrete and direct clue that improvement in outdoor air quality generates various health benefits in China, and confirm from a new perspective that it is worthwhile for China to shift its development strategy from economic growth to environmental economic sustainability. Greater emphasis on sustainable environment design, consistently strict regulatory enforcement, and specific monitoring actions should be regarded in China to decrease the health risks and to avoid long-term environmental threats. PMID:27061471

  3. Deciphering the imperative: translating public health quality improvement into organizational performance management gains.

    PubMed

    Beitsch, Leslie M; Yeager, Valerie A; Moran, John

    2015-03-18

    With the launching of the national public health accreditation program under the auspices of the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB), health department momentum around quality improvement adoption has accelerated. Domain 9 of the PHAB standards (one of 12 domains) focuses on evaluation and improvement of performance and is acting as a strong driver for quality improvement and performance management implementation within health departments. Widespread adoption of quality improvement activities in public health trails that in other US sectors. Several performance management models have received broad acceptance, including models among government and nonprofits. A model specifically for public health has been developed and is presented herein. All models in current use reinforce customer focus; streamlined, value-added processes; and strategic alignment. All are structured to steer quality improvement efforts toward organizational priorities, ensuring that quality improvement complements performance management. High-performing health departments harness the synergy of quality improvement and performance management, providing powerful tools to achieve public health strategic imperatives. PMID:25494050

  4. Blackberry fruit quality components, composition, and potential health benefits.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Blackberries have long been a popular small fruit. Their chemical composition data was assembled for this invited book chapter. Briefly, primary and secondary metabolites important to blackberry fruit quality were summarized. Metabolites are involved in many critical aspects of fruit quality includi...

  5. Sensitivity of health risk estimates to air quality adjustment procedure

    SciTech Connect

    Whitfield, R.G.

    1997-06-30

    This letter is a summary of risk results associated with exposure estimates using two-parameter Weibull and quadratic air quality adjustment procedures (AQAPs). New exposure estimates were developed for children and child-occurrences, six urban areas, and five alternative air quality scenarios. In all cases, the Weibull and quadratic results are compared to previous results, which are based on a proportional AQAP.

  6. Health and productivity benefits of improved indoor air quality

    SciTech Connect

    Dorgan, C.B.; Dorgan, C.E.; Kanarek, M.S.; Willman, A.J.

    1998-10-01

    This paper is a summary of two studies completed for a national contractor`s association on the health costs and productivity benefits of improved IAQ. The original study documented the general health costs and productivity benefits of improved IAQ. The second study expanded the scope to include medical cost reductions for specific illnesses from improved IAQ. General information on the objectives, assumptions, definitions, and results of the studies are presented, followed by detailed information on research methodology, building inventory and wellness categories, health and medical effects of poor IAQ, health cost benefits, productivity benefits, recommended improvements, and conclusions and future improvements.

  7. Advancing children's health care and outcomes through the pediatric quality measures program.

    PubMed

    Mistry, Kamila B; Chesley, Francis; LLanos, Karen; Dougherty, Denise

    2014-01-01

    In 2009 Congress passed the Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (CHIPRA), which presented an unprecedented opportunity to measure and improve health care quality and outcomes for children. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, in partnership with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, has worked to fulfill a number of quality measurement provisions under CHIPRA, including establishing the Pediatric Quality Measures Program (PQMP). The PQMP was charged with establishing a publicly available portfolio of new and enhanced evidence-based pediatric quality measures for use by Medicaid/Children's Health Insurance Program and other public and private programs and to also provide opportunities to improve and strengthen the Child Core Set of quality measures. This article focuses on the PQMP and provides an overview of the program's goals and related activities, lessons learned, and future opportunities. PMID:25169453

  8. Association between health worker motivation and healthcare quality efforts in Ghana

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Ghana is one of the sub-Saharan African countries making significant progress towards universal access to quality healthcare. However, it remains a challenge to attain the 2015 targets for the health related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) partly due to health sector human resource challenges including low staff motivation. Purpose This paper addresses indicators of health worker motivation and assesses associations with quality care and patient safety in Ghana. The aim is to identify interventions at the health worker level that contribute to quality improvement in healthcare facilities. Methods The study is a baseline survey of health workers (n = 324) in 64 primary healthcare facilities in two regions in Ghana. Data collection involved quality care assessment using the SafeCare Essentials tool, the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) accreditation data and structured staff interviews on workplace motivating factors. The Spearman correlation test was conducted to test the hypothesis that the level of health worker motivation is associated with level of effort by primary healthcare facilities to improve quality care and patient safety. Results The quality care situation in health facilities was generally low, as determined by the SafeCare Essentials tool and NHIA data. The majority of facilities assessed did not have documented evidence of processes for continuous quality improvement and patient safety. Overall, staff motivation appeared low although workers in private facilities perceived better working conditions than workers in public facilities (P <0.05). Significant positive associations were found between staff satisfaction levels with working conditions and the clinic’s effort towards quality improvement and patient safety (P <0.05). Conclusion As part of efforts towards attainment of the health related MDGs in Ghana, more comprehensive staff motivation interventions should be integrated into quality improvement strategies especially

  9. The Affordable Care Act: Opportunities and Challenges for Physicians.

    PubMed

    Chen, Min

    2015-11-01

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) will affect many aspects of health care across the nation, presenting both opportunities and challenges. Physicians who have a solid understanding of the recent industry trends and the role they will be playing in the post-ACA world will be able to better adapt to the new environment. This article analyzes the implications of the health care reform for physicians and offers recommendations on how to turn challenges into opportunities. PMID:26501969

  10. Can AIDS drugs be afforded?

    PubMed

    1997-11-01

    UNAIDS has launched an 'HIV Drug Access Initiative' in the Ivory Coast, Uganda, Chile, and Vietnam; the pilot project will attempt to improve access to HIV drugs. Public and private sector efforts will be coordinated. The Glaxo Wellcome, Hoffman-La Roche, and Virco pharmaceutical companies will participate. Each country will 1) adapt its present system with regard to HIV and 2) establish both an HIV drug advisory board and a non-profit company which will import the drugs. Health ministries within each country will be required to find sources of funding for the programs. Uganda will probably use funds from its sexually transmitted disease (STD) program, which is supported by the World Bank; the Ivory Coast will combine corporate contributions, new tariffs, and non-profit insurance system monies into a 'solidarity fund.' UNAIDS funds will be used for oversight and evaluation. UNAIDS also released a review of 68 studies which examined the impact of sex education on the sex behavior of young people; it indicated that, in 65 of the studies, sex education did not increase the sexual activity of youth. UNAIDS concluded that quality programs helped delay first intercourse and often reduced the number of sexual partners, resulting in reduced rates of STDs and unplanned pregnancy. UNAIDS further concluded that effective sex education should begin before the onset of sexual activity, and curriculums should be focused. Openness in communicating about sex should be encouraged, and social and media influences on behavior should be addressed. Young people should be taught negotiating skills (how to say 'no' to sex and how to insist on safer sex). PMID:12348380

  11. Innovations to Enhance the Quality of Health Professions Education at the University of Zimbabwe College of Health Sciences -NECTAR Program

    PubMed Central

    Ndhlovu, Chiratidzo E; Nathoo, Kusum; Borok, Margaret; Chidzonga, Midion; Aagaard, Eva M.; Connors, Susan C.; Barry, Michele; Campbell, Thomas; Hakim, James

    2014-01-01

    The University of Zimbabwe College of Health Sciences (UZCHS) is Zimbabwe's premier health professions training institution. However, several concerns were raised during the past decade over the quality of health education at UZCHS. The number of faculty and students declined markedly until 2010, when there was a medical student intake of 147 while the faculty comprised only 122 (39%) of a possible 314 positions. The economic and political crises that the country experienced from 1999 to 2009 compounded the difficulties faced by the institution by limiting the availability of resources. The Medical Education Partnership Initiative (MEPI) funding opportunity has given UZCHS the stimulus to embark on reforms to improve the quality of health education it offers. UZCHS, in partnership with the University of Colorado School of Medicine (UCSOM), the University of Colorado Denver Evaluation Center (UCDEC), and Stanford University designed the Novel Education Clinical Trainees and Researchers (NECTAR) program to implement a series of health education innovations to meet this challenge. Between 2010 and 2013, innovations that have positively affected the quality of health professions education at UZCHS include the launch of comprehensive faculty development programs and mentored clinical and research programs for postgraduate students. A competency-based curriculum reform process has been initiated; a health professions department has been established; and the Research Support Center has been strengthened, providing critical resources to institutionalize health education and research implementation at the college. A core group of faculty trained in medical education has been assembled, helping to ensure the sustainability of these NECTAR activities. PMID:25072588

  12. Health systems, quality of health care, and translational cancer research: the role of the Istituto Superiore Sanità - Rome.

    PubMed

    Ricciardi, Walter

    2015-01-01

    Faced with the challenge of ensuring high-quality and cost-effective health systems in the context of persistent financial crisis, a global strategy for cancer prevention and treatment represents a priority for public health bodies and governments. The key goals for the initiative are to define standards of cancer prevention and care while leveraging the continuous progress of biomedical research in the interest of public health. In Italy, the establishment of a network of Comprehensive Cancer Centres (CCC) named the Alliance Against Cancer (ACC) is an important initiative taken by the Ministry of Health to foster common strategies for enhancing the quality of oncology research and care at the national level. The Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS) has played an important role in supporting ACC activities through a special national program called ISS for ACC, launched by the Italian Ministry of Health in 2006. A similar role has been pursued in subsequent initiatives, including ISS support for a project aimed at providing international accreditation of the CCC of the ACC, funded by the Italian Ministry of Health. The results of this initiative, reported in the current issue of Tumori, are especially significant since specific indicators of quality for research and cancer care have been successfully defined for all the participating institutes. As the leading technical and scientific body of the Italian National Health Service, the ISS will continue to play a proactive role in supporting national networks and strategic national and international initiatives aimed at promoting public health. PMID:27096278

  13. Evidence for action on improving the maternal and newborn health workforce: The basis for quality care.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Jim; Sochas, Laura; Cometto, Giorgio; Matthews, Zoë

    2016-01-01

    Ambitious new goals to end preventable maternal and newborn deaths will not only require increased coverage but also improved quality of care. Unfortunately, current levels of quality in the delivery of maternal and newborn care are low in high-burden countries, for reasons that are intimately linked with inadequate planning and management of the maternal and newborn health workforce. The Global Strategy on Human Resources for Health is a key opportunity to strengthen global and country-level accountability frameworks for the health workforce and its capacity to deliver quality care. In order to succeed, maternal and newborn health specialists must embrace this strategy and its linkages with the new Global Strategy for Women's, Children's, and Adolescents' Health; action is needed across high- and low-income countries; and any accountability framework must be underpinned by ambitious, measurable indicators and strengthened data collection on human resources for health. PMID:26725857

  14. Association between HIV programs and quality of maternal health inputs and processes in Kenya.

    PubMed

    Kruk, Margaret E; Jakubowski, Aleksandra; Rabkin, Miriam; Kimanga, Davies O; Kundu, Francis; Lim, Travis; Lumumba, Vane; Oluoch, Tom; Robinson, Katherine A; El-Sadr, Wafaa

    2015-04-01

    We assessed whether quality of maternal and newborn health services is influenced by presence of HIV programs at Kenyan health facilities using data from a national facility survey. Facilities that provided services to prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission had better prenatal and postnatal care inputs, such as infrastructure and supplies, and those providing antiretroviral therapy had better quality of prenatal and postnatal care processes. HIV-related programs may have benefits for quality of care for related services in the health system. PMID:25689188

  15. Association Between HIV Programs and Quality of Maternal Health Inputs and Processes in Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Kruk, Margaret E.; Jakubowski, Aleksandra; Rabkin, Miriam; Kimanga, Davies O.; Kundu, Francis; Lim, Travis; Lumumba, Vane; Oluoch, Tom; Robinson, Katherine A.; El-Sadr, Wafaa

    2016-01-01

    We assessed whether quality of maternal and newborn health services is influenced by presence of HIV programs at Kenyan health facilities using data from a national facility survey. Facilities that provided services to prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission had better prenatal and postnatal care inputs, such as infrastructure and supplies, and those providing antiretroviral therapy had better quality of prenatal and postnatal care processes. HIV-related programs may have benefits for quality of care for related services in the health system. PMID:25689188

  16. The opportunity and strategy for quality and health-system improvement now and in the future.

    PubMed

    Sherar, Michael; Maley, Oonagh

    2015-01-01

    Since 2004, Cancer Care Ontario (CCO) has played a leadership role in linking funding to quality of care, and in using evidence and administrative and clinical data to drive performance and quality improvement. This article describes how CCO has used its cancer and renal health system strategies to establish an environment of continuous health system improvement. The article also describes how CCO's Corporate Strategy is driving organizational improvement: evolving CCO's capacity and capability to drive quality and value across healthcare settings, and its ability to advance broader health system transformation in support of cancer and renal patients. PMID:25562136

  17. 42 CFR 600.330 - Coordination with other insurance affordability programs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 5 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Coordination with other insurance affordability programs. 600.330 Section 600.330 Public Health CENTERS FOR MEDICARE & MEDICAID SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) BASIC HEALTH PROGRAM ADMINISTRATION, ELIGIBILITY, ESSENTIAL HEALTH BENEFITS, PERFORMANCE STANDARDS,...

  18. RELATING AIR QUALITY AND ENVIRONMENTAL PUBLIC HEALTH TRACKING DATA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Initiated in February 2004, the Public Health Air Surveillance Evaluation (PHASE) Project is a multi-disciplinary collaboration between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and three Environmental Public Health Track...

  19. Safe and Affordable Drinking Water for Developing Countries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gadgil, Ashok

    2008-09-01

    Safe drinking water remains inaccessible for about 1.2 billion people in the world, and the hourly toll from biological contamination of drinking water is 200 deaths mostly among children under five years of age. This chapter summarizes the need for safe drinking water, the scale of the global problem, and various methods tried to address it. Then it gives the history and current status of an innovation ("UV Waterworks™") developed to address this major public health challenge. It reviews water disinfection technologies applicable to achieve the desired quality of drinking water in developing countries, and specifically, the limitations overcome by one particular invention: UV Waterworks. It then briefly describes the business model and financing option than is accelerating its implementation for affordable access to safe drinking water to the unserved populations in these countries. Thus this chapter describes not only the innovation in design of a UV water disinfection system, but also innovation in the delivery model for safe drinking water, with potential for long term growth and sustainability.

  20. Affordable In-Space Transportation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Curtis, L. A.; VanDyke, M. K.; Lajoie, R. M.; Woodcock, G. R.

    1996-01-01

    Current and proposed launch systems will provide access to low-Earth orbit (LEO), and destinations beyond LEO, but the cost of delivering payloads will preclude the use of these services by many users. To develop and encourage revolutionary commercial utilization of geosynchronous orbit (GEO) and to provide an affordable means to continue NASA space science and exploration missions, the transportation costs to in-space destinations must be reduced. The principal objective of this study was to conceptually define three to four promising approaches to in-space transportation for delivery of satellites and other payloads, 3,000- to 10,000-lb class, to GEO destinations. This study established a methodology for evaluating in-space transportation systems based on life-cycle cost. The reusable concepts seemed to fare better in the evaluation than expendable, since a major driver in the life-cycle cost was the stage production cost.