I’m at a conference on patient safety…

Suzanne Delbanco is the CEO of the Leapfrog Group. This is the group which is where big employers get together to grouch about health care and ask the providers nicely to try to provide better care, cheaper, and suggest that they adopt some innovations like using computers–which of course get rebuffed. She thinks that "in this country we have a funny employer-based health insurance system".  So employers are moving to cost shifting, etc, etc, but they know that wont work.

So Leapfrog was started to try to improve the process, to make "leaps" in patient safety and quality. CPOE was the first not only because it was the gold standard for reducing errors but because it also required hospitals to put in the information systems that will enable process measurements. They’ve focused on inpatient setting, but are looking at outpatient eRx, lab tests, and care management prompts. Now as the base for Bridges to Excellence office link program.

They run their own online survey (voluntary and online) and license the data.

So how have they done? Well progress on CPOE has been slow. They think they’ve gone from 2% to 7%, and another 17% say they’re working on it.They are also creating a CPOE evaluation tool (something that HISTalk might want to get involved in)

She also asks is transparency enough? Well the AHRQ quality report showed improvement in nursing home care (15%) compared to only 3% in hospitals, because Medicare mandated reporting by nursing homes. Now CMS is quasi-mandating reporting by hospitals, so she expects that improvements will start showing up in hospital quality measures.

In addition P4P is getting closer to being standardized and less confusing, although not widespread…they are seeing more and more P4P, such as Bridges to Excellence. She’s also on the CCHIT committee that will be evaluating and later certifying products for the physician setting.

On the other hand I didn’t ask the nasty question which is given that
the employers have let their suppliers stick them with 15% annual
increases add infinitum why do they think that anyone is going to be
convinced by these efforts?

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