Fisher: Readmission Problem Needs a Teaching Hospital Solution
"Academic medicine has held itself up as leaders of both thinking and improvement in healthcare," he said in a telephone interview. "So the question is, if not academic medicine, then who? Where else are we going to do the research that allows us to improve the quality of care and lower its cost?"
It just hasn't happened at anywhere near the level it's needed at the places teaching the next generation of physicians, he says.
ACCESS. INSIGHT. ANALYSIS.
Join the HealthLeaders Media Council
Get members-only access to industry-wide intelligence, forecasts, and analysis positions your organization to benchmark against your peers, identify and respond to key trends shaping healthcare, and make sound business decisions.
"It's fair to say we have not seen an emphasis on care coordination as the focus of academic initiatives as much as in other areas of innovation and clinical treatment. And innovation in care management is one of the things we need desperately," he says. In fact, Dartmouth studies 15 years ago showed academic medical centers with the same readmission problems, so really nothing has changed.
Fisher also criticizes academic and community hospital systems for failing to reduce the number of beds that won't be needed when all these readmissions are avoided. Instead, hospitals are expanding lines of service with greater profit margins, even those procedures with questionable effectiveness. No money will be saved that way, he says. But more on that later.
Joanne Conroy, MD, chief healthcare officer for the Association of American Medical Colleges, acknowledged in a phone interview that the nation's teaching hospitals must do a much better job in discharge planning and managing patients in their homes or care facilities. And they need to do more research in care processes to find better ways to coordinate care and translate that into practice. They're working on it, she says.
- New G-Codes to Pay Doctors for Broad Array of Non-Face-to-Face Care
- CMS Sets 2014 Pay Rates for Hospital Outpatient and Physician Services
- States Rejecting Medicaid Expansion Forgo Billions in Federal Funds
- Douglas Hawthorne—A Chance to Do Something Big
- Telehealth Improves Patient Care in ICUs
- Why You Should Involve Patients in Nursing Handoffs
- Hospital M&A Volume Up, Value Down in 3Q
- Not-for-Profit Hospitals Find Opportunity Amid Uncertainty
- The 5 Biggest Healthcare Finance Trouble Spots
- 50 Years of Fighting Pressure Ulcers Called Into Question