Digital Health Care Income Divide
The gang kicks off this week’s show with a story on the push for digital e-health records and how this is dividing the large financially sound facilities from other smaller practices and clinics. As these smaller organizations are pushed to implement costly computer solutions for their under-served poor populations, the fear is that they will not be able to provide needed services in the face of the cost associated with purchasing and maintaining the necessary computer equipment for the e-health initiative. Terri points out that there is a lot of money in the medical software business market and why is it that cheaper solutions aren’t tried first.
Nurses Manage Chronic Patients Better!
The team moved on to looking at another way to manage costs – allow for nursing follow up and management of patients with multiple, chronic conditions. One study cited showed a ten fold savings over the course of a year when nurses and not physicians and traditional facilities like hospitals were used to manage these patients. Jamie discussed the numerous studies on the effectiveness of telehealth nursing and follow-up with post surgical patients and he wondered why, after so many studies that showed similar results, did the system still insist on multiple patient admissions and re-admissions to treat these patients.
It seems simple to Jamie, Terri, and Kim – when a year of nursing care and management can be had for just $1,200 per patient versus over $10,000 in health care costs the old way, we need to throw out the old way of doing things and start up nurse-led clinics and care to save the system (and all of us) money.
What Are the Top 10 Patient Care Quality Issues in 2011?
Lastly, the three nurses on today’s show took a look at a list of the top 10 quality issues affecting patient care in the coming year. Some of them were not surprising and had been discussed before on the show including:
- Overuse of imaging and scanning radiation exposure
- Central line infections (and all health care acquired infections)
- Collaborative care approaches with patients
- Electronic health record adoption by the system
- Increased role for nurses
- Data and security breaches
What do you think the biggest issues of the coming year are going to be? What will affect your patients and your ability to care for them the most? Let us know for a future episode and maybe we’ll invite you on the show to share your thoughts with the panel.
Thanks to bandwidth sponsor AllNurses.com, the Largest online community for nurses. Continue the discussions there!
On the panel this week:
Join us as we delve in to our week’s topic.
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