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Archive for the 'Palliative Care' Category




When Less Is More: Issues Of Overuse In Health Care


April 25th, 2014

Editor’s Note: This post is part of an ongoing Health Affairs Blog series on palliative care, health policy, and health reform. The series features essays adapted from and drawing on an upcoming volume, Meeting the Needs of Older Adults with Serious Illness: Challenges and Opportunities in the Age of Health Care Reform, in which clinicians, researchers and policy leaders address 16 key areas where real-world policy options to improve access to quality palliative care could have a substantial role in improving value.

About 18 months ago, Daniel Wolfson, president of the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Foundation began asking audiences of clinicians if any of them had ever seen a patient subjected to unnecessary medical care. As one of the architects of the Choosing Wisely campaign, an initiative of the ABIM Foundation intended to reduce overuse of medical services, Wolfson had a particular interest in the answer to this question. He was surprised to find that in some of his audiences, a majority of clinicians have personal experience with overuse.

Clinicians’ newfound willingness to concede that overuse is a problem comes as good news for people who have long labored to increase awareness of this aspect of medicine in America, including the authors of this blog and many of the readers of Health Affairs.

Overuse is costly, pervasive, and causes harm to patients, yet it has been remarkably difficult to get the medical profession, health care industry, and general public to take note of it, much less take steps to reduce it. Today, however, there are multiple efforts underway that offer hope for real change, including Choosing Wisely, the growth of palliative care, and the Lown Institute’s Right Care Alliance; but until now, the most difficult step has been the first: for patients, payers, physicians and policymakers to acknowledge the scope of the problem.

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Foundation Blogs Round-up: Medicaid, ACA, TB, Environmental Health, Infection Control, and More


April 7th, 2014

“Colorado Joins States Making Continuous Care for Kids a Priority,” Cody Belzley of the Colorado Children’s Campaign, March 12, on the Colorado Trust’s CommunityConnections blog. In this post, Belzley describes the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS’s) approval of Colorado’s decision to give children on Medicaid “continuous eligibility” for twelve months regardless of any […]

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A Health Foundation Honors Leaders in Palliative Care


November 21st, 2013

At Cambia Health Foundation we are committed to improving access to high-quality palliative care across our Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Utah community. Through our signature Sojourns program, we support organizations and individuals that share our commitment to advancing patient-centered, effective palliative care that improves quality of life by addressing the physical, intellectual, emotional, cultural, and […]

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New in the Journal: Foundation Funding to Educate, Train, and Expand the Health Professions Workforce


January 18th, 2013

My GrantWatch column in the recently released January 2013 issue of Health Affairs focuses on the workforce and foundations’ efforts to strengthen it. The column provides a snapshot of what foundations around the United States are funding. A variety of funders are interested in health professions workforce topics. In my small sampling, it appears that […]

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Money & Medicine: Lessons for Fixing the Fiscal Cliff?


December 20th, 2012

The author previously led national quality and patient safety initiatives at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, including its twelve-year program to bring palliative care into the nation’s hospitals. She is the principal author of The Treatment Trap, The Battle Over Health Care: What Obama’s Reform Means for America’s Future, and the forthcoming book, Medicare Meltdown […]

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Alzheimer’s Disease & Other Dementias: What Are Foundations Doing to Increase Knowledge and Prevent Suffering?


May 18th, 2012

This week, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a national plan to prevent and effectively treat Alzheimer’s disease by 2025. The National Alzheimer’s Project Act, legislation that was passed unanimously by both houses of Congress (yes, you read that correctly!) in 2010 required HHS to come up with a plan, said […]

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Foundation Convenes Statewide Conference on End-of-Life Care


May 4th, 2012

GrantWatch Blog asked the author, a staffer at the Jewish Healthcare Foundation, in Pittsburgh, to report on a conference that the funder and the Coalition for Quality at End of Life convened this spring. Readmissions Reduction. Health Information Technology. Patient-Centered Medical Home. Cost Effectiveness. Best Practice. Provider Education. Workforce Training. Care Transitions. Public-Private Partnerships. Policy […]

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Holiday Potpourri: Foundation Blog Posts on Health Reform, Use of HIT by Safety-Net Providers, and More


December 28th, 2011

In combing through a number of foundation blogs that I follow (as time permits), I found these recent posts, which you may find relevant to your work. The topics covered by these writings range from oral health to the Gates Foundation’s interactions with grantees and on topics from mental health to HIV/AIDS prevention. Bloggers include […]

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Foundation Blogs Round-up: Health Reform, Global Health, HIV/AIDS, End-of-Life Care, & more


June 23rd, 2011

I have put together a listing here of some foundation-related blog posts that you may want to check out. Now that summer has arrived, perhaps things are slowing down in your workplace, and you now have time for some professional reading! Links to a wide variety of posts follow. Incidentally, if you work for a […]

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The Three Most-Read GrantWatch Blog Posts during April 2011


May 11th, 2011

We list below the three most-read posts during the month. Take a look in case you missed one of these when the original tweet or e-alert went out. 1. “Foundation Blogs Round-up: Community Clinics, Health Reform, Health IT, & More,” by Lee-Lee Prina (March 31). First on the most-read list during April was a selected […]

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One Foundation’s Path to Expanding Palliative Care in California’s Public Hospitals


March 30th, 2011

Read about the California HealthCare Foundation’s effort to be a catalyst for change in this area. While access to palliative care has been steadily increasing in hospital settings over the past decade, a survey published in 2007 on the availability of palliative care in California and funded by the California HealthCare Foundation (CHCF), found that […]

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Patient-Centered Care: A Grantmaker Relates An “Eye-Opening” Personal Experience


January 18th, 2011

Today I want to tell you about a blog post published recently on the John A. Hartford Foundation’s health AGEnda blog. Its focus is patient-centered care. This post does not contain theoretical or hypothetical musings about that topic, and it is not a dry recitation of facts. Instead, the information presented here is very real, […]

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A Foundation in Pittsburgh Encourages Frank Talk about End-of-Life Care


December 1st, 2010

End-of-life care presents emotional, physical, and financial burdens for patients and their loved ones. At the Jewish Healthcare Foundation (JHF), in Pittsburgh, we have become somewhat fixated on the fact that the health care system too often fails families and patients at end of life. Unfortunately, failure is what most people expect. But JHF end-of-life […]

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Three Most-Read GrantWatch Blog Posts during August 2010


September 7th, 2010

Below, we have tabulated a list of the three most-read GrantWatch Blog posts in August 2010. (GrantWatch Blog launched in March 2010.) Here is a chance to take a gander at these posts if you missed them when the original Tweet or e-alert came out. “The Relief of Suffering from Serious Illness: How Foundations Can […]

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Health Reform at the Retail Level: Community by Community, State by State


August 19th, 2010

Our discussions at the recent health funders’ retreat at Brandeis University drove home an important point. The Affordable Care Act is a lot more than a series of provisions to assure access to health care coverage for millions of uninsured Americans. The new health reform law creates opportunities to develop fundamental and complementary payment and […]

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The Relief of Suffering from Serious Illness: How Foundations Can Lessen the Pain


August 6th, 2010

The high cost of end-of-life care in the United States has been a source of hand-wringing among health economists and policy wonks for decades. (See “End-of-Life Savings: A ‘Fool’s Gold’ of Reform” on the Health Affairs Blog.) Nonetheless, a wise man once said, “Every problem has a solution.” This problem has a solution, too, and grantmakers […]

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