Deliver Your News to the World

Teamwork, Technology, and Coordinated Care Improve Outcomes and Lower Costs


Kaiser Permanente/National Labor College Forum Highlights Best Practices for Reformed Health Delivery System

SILVER SPRING, Md., — A national forum hosted by the Kaiser Permanente Health Care Institute and the National Labor College highlighted best practices for ensuring high-quality, affordable health care for all Americans. Speakers discussed proven strategies for incentivizing coordinated care and better outcomes.
Teamwork, Technology, and Coordinated Care Improve Outcomes and Lower Costs

“Changing the way we cover health care, without actually reforming care delivery is a mistake,” said George Halvorson, chairman and CEO of Kaiser Permanente. “As a nation, we need to improve access to care, reduce costs and ensure quality care for all. Team-based care, supported by technology, is essential to achieving that vision.”

Speakers emphasized how improving outcomes and lowering costs are possible with coordinated care by teams of people supported by the right technology and information. Kaiser Permanente’s approach is fueled by a unique high-performance partnership with the unions representing 96,000 employees. A Kaiser Permanente Colorado-based care team comprising physicians, clinical pharmacists, nurses, and medical assistants showed how this unique approach helps staff integrate technology and collaboration, significantly improving high blood pressure control and reduced heart disease risk for hundreds of patients.

Using the teamwork tools of their labor management partnership, the Colorado team designed a new process to use data from Kaiser Permanente’s electronic health record Kaiser Permanente HealthConnect® to identify at-risk patients and engage them regarding their condition. A special rapid-flow hypertension clinic was set up to perform blood pressure tests, adjust medications, and discuss treatment plans. Patients were called every three weeks to improve compliance. After two years, more patients — 70 percent versus 60 percent — had their blood pressure levels under control.

AFL-CIO President John Sweeney discussed the importance of improving care delivery through coordination as a component of health care reform. “The compelling thing about coordinated care, fueled by employee team-based innovation, is that it results in higher quality care at a lower cost,” said Sweeney. “We need to have both built into any new approach to universal health care. We are proud of the unique way workers and unions are leading delivery system reform at Kaiser Permanente.

Governor Martin O’Malley (D-Md.) delivered a keynote address at the event discussing health care reform from the state perspective, stressing the need for policy action at the federal level. The Governor emphasized the importance of electronic health records to reduce medical errors, coordinate care among different medical facilities, and share medical information during public health emergencies.

William E. Scheuerman, National Labor College president, said: “The Kaiser Permanente Health Care Institute at the NLC works to keep our union members informed of the fast-paced, complex issues in health care. Through programs like today’s conference and health care courses on key topics, we’re helping union members hold on to their most vital benefits.”

Through their unique Labor Management Partnership agreement, Kaiser Permanente and the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions jointly established the Kaiser Permanente Health Care Institute at the National Labor College, which hosted the annual event to inform union leaders and allied organizations about new developments in health care.

Visit the Labor Management Partnership for more information and for many additional examples of how Kaiser Permanente’s care teams are reforming health care delivery every day.


This news content was configured by WebWire editorial staff. Linking is permitted.

News Release Distribution and Press Release Distribution Services Provided by WebWire.