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Author Archives: John Toussaint

Disappointment Again with SGR Fix

Congress kicked the can down the road for another year this week  in a disappointing end to a bipartisan bicameral bill that would have permanently fixed the flawed doctor payment legislation. More importantly the permanent fix bill had important provisions that could have saved billions of dollars, and improved care for Americans. Link to full article […]

How should congress pay for the SGR fix bill?

Harold Miller provides great insights as to how Congress should think about paying for the SGR fix. “A bipartisan, bicameral bill was announced earlier this month as the result of a joint effort by the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee, House Ways and Means Committee, and Senate Finance Committee to repeal and replace the […]

What is the role of quality managers in the lean transformation?

Recently, Melissa Mannon, a former intern at the ThedaCare Center for Healthcare Value, authored this article regarding the role of a Quality Manager in a lean organization. What you will find is that the role changes from that of being a “checker” to that of being a team member in operations. When quality is built […]

Medicare data release to providers is part of bipartisan SGR “fix” bill.

On Thursday, three committees of Congress agreed on language that would permanently fix the flawed SGR bill. The bill has sweeping changes associated with it including moving physician payment away from fee-for-sevice to “alternative payment models” such as Accountable Care Organizations and Medical Homes. It also suggests a pay-for-value instead of volume program, although the […]

Researchers Inappropriately Blast Innovation Center

An article in the New York Times recently criticized Medicare’s Innovation Center for not using placebo controlled double blind study design. According to the article: “But now that the Center has gotten started, many researchers and economists are disturbed that it is not using randomized clinical trials, the rigorous method that is widely considered the […]

Senator Baldwin introduces important Medicare data use bill

In July I published an article in JAMA, co-authored by Don Berwick, regarding the critical need for Medicare data to be available for physicians to use it to improve healthcare outcomes for Medicare beneficiaries. http://www.createvalue.org/blog/post/?bid=321 The crux of the article is based on real experience with massive data sets at the Wisconsin Health Information Organization (WHIO). […]

Commonwealth Article Describes State Administrative Data Sets

The Commonwealth Organization has focused recently on important transparency initiatives going on throughout the country. This article compares all the state administrative data sets and the details of their development. The fundamental difference between WHIO and the other administrative data bases is that WHIO is a publicly available. Although the data access is not free it is […]