If the problem is chaos, the solution is organization.

By  |  December 28, 2009 | 

Rob Bessler writes…

Happy holidays to all.

While working the slow nights over the holidays, or while on the beach, I encourage you to take the time to get involved in the challenge of our times centered around meaningful improvements to healthcare delivery in the U.S. The best place to start is to get educated.

One of the great challenges facing our nation is healthcare reform.  The enormity of our system, the complexity of all the different stake holders and the spiraling costs make the situation seem almost helpless. In the book, “Chaos and Organization in Health Care”, two pioneering clinical leaders, Dr. Thomas Lee, and Dr. James Morgan from Partners Healthcare System in Boston offer optimism. They see in the inefficiency, the missed opportunities, and the occasional harm that can result from the current system. The analysis shows it stems from chaos in the delivery of care. If the problem is chaos, the solution is organization. Most importantly in their book, they offer a plan. Below is part of the intro worthy of direct quote.

“The chaos is caused by something good: the dramatic progress in medical science. The explosion of medical knowledge and the exponential increase in treatment options. Imposed on a fragmented system of small practices and individual patients with multiple providers, progress results in chaos. They argue attacking this chaos is even more important than whether healthcare is managed by government or controlled by market forces.

Some providers are already more tightly organized, adapting management principles from business and offering care that is by any measure safer, better and less costly. They propose multiple strategies that can be adopted nationwide, including the obvious value of the EMR and information systems for sharing knowledge; team based care, with doctors and other providers working together; and disease management programs to coordinate care for the sickest patients.”

How healthcare is financed is important. I for one am gravely concerned with the bravado of spending that is proposed to occur with all the typical one off ear marks that lead to irresponsible spending of our valued tax dollars. How market forces are activated is crucial. Yet I believe the influence of these different approaches will be exerted through their ability to catalyze the organization of healthcare providers-in short less chaos and more organization.

Happy new year and looking forward to a bright future.

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