New AHRQ Views Blog Post: Seizing Opportunities in Three Essential Areas To Improve Patient Care

Issue 663
AHRQ News Now is a weekly newsletter that highlights agency research and program activities.
May 7, 2019

AHRQ Stats: Health Systems Offering Medicare Advantage Plans

About 12 percent of health systems offered a Medicare Advantage insurance plan in 2016. The most common type was a health maintenance organization plan. (Source: AHRQ, Compendium of U.S. Health Systems—Provider-Offered Medicare Advantage Plans Among U.S. Health Systems, 2016 [PDF, 225 KB].) 

Today's Headlines:

New AHRQ Views Blog Post: Seizing Opportunities in Three Essential Areas To Improve Patient Care

Director Gopal Khanna, M.B.A., identifies three initiatives that will guide agency efforts in the future as AHRQ continues to seize opportunities to improve the lives of patients: improving care for the 25 percent of Americans living with multiple chronic conditions; establishing an integrated data, analytics and information platform, along with the necessary technical expertise, to capture a 360-degree view of the healthcare system; and reducing by 10 percent the more than 12 million diagnostic errors that occur each year. Efforts to address these priorities, which were identified after consultations with stakeholders, will be explored in more depth in upcoming AHRQ Views blog posts. To receive all blog posts, submit your email address and select “AHRQ Views Blog.” 

New AHRQ Grantee Profile: Leora Horwitz, M.D., Uses a Systems Approach To Improve Patient Safety Leora Horwitz, M.D.

AHRQ grantee Leora Horwitz, M.D., principal investigator at the AHRQ-funded Patient Imaging Quality and Safety Laboratory, or PIQS Lab, at New York University, is leading a transdisciplinary team studying ways to improve radiology services. Dr. Horwitz is using a systems-based approach to improve patient safety and clinical outcomes by redesigning various aspects of radiology services. The following AHRQ New Now item provides an example of recent health services research conducted by Dr. Horwitz and colleagues. Visit her profile and those of other AHRQ grantees who have made major advances in the field. 

For Medicare Heart Failure Patients, Hospital Readmission Risks Are Highest Immediately Following Nursing Home Discharge

Patients with heart failure were more likely to go back to the hospital within two days of being discharged to their homes from a skilled nursing facility, but after that two-day period the chance of readmission declined considerably, a recent AHRQ-funded study found. In the study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Directors Association, researchers examined records of 67,500 Medicare patients 65 years and older who were hospitalized with heart failure 30 days after discharge from a nursing home in 2012-2015. Of them, 16,333 (24 percent) were readmitted within 30 days of discharge from the facility. But the readmission rate was at least twice as high in the first two days after discharge as in subsequent days. The results are meaningful because 1 in 5 Medicare patients has heart failure. Researchers suggested that further work should examine if current hospital discharge practices could be applied to the transition from nursing home to home. Access the abstract.

June 7 Deadline Approaching for Joining AHRQ Competition To Develop Tool for Analyzing Social Determinants of Health

Applications are due June 7 for AHRQ’s challenge competition to develop online tools that use free, publicly available social determinants of health data to better understand and predict communities’ unmet healthcare needs. The total prize pool for the Visualization Resources of Community-Level Social Determinants of Health Challenge is $220,000. Participants must develop visualization tools that draw on information from at least three free, publicly available data sources, whether federal, state or local. Sources may include data from voice and digital assistance service lines, such as 911 emergency services, 311 community services and 211 personal referrals for community services. 

Highlights From AHRQ’s Patient Safety Network

AHRQ’s Patient Safety Network (PSNet) highlights journal articles, books and tools related to patient safety. Articles featured this week include:

Review additional new publications in PSNet’s current issue or access recent cases and commentaries in AHRQ’s WebM&M (Morbidity and Mortality Rounds on the Web).

Echoing Support for Public Service Recognition Week

AHRQ is supporting Public Service Recognition Week, the annual event that honors public servants of federal, state, county and local government for their contributions that make life better for the American people. AHRQ is participating in the observance as one of eight agencies in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), whose more than 80,000 employees administer more than 100 programs to protect the health of all Americans and provide essential human services, especially for those least able to help themselves. HHS’ theme for this year’s Public Service Recognition Week is, “It takes you!,” chosen to reflect the important investment of time, talent and sacrifice contributed by HHS employees.

AHRQ in the Professional Literature

Association between Medicare expenditure growth and mortality rates in patients with acute myocardial infarction: a comparison from 1999 through 2014. Likosky DS, Van Parys J, Zhou W, et al. JAMA Cardiol 2018 Feb 1;3(2):114-22. Access the abstract on PubMed®.

Screening for preeclampsia. Mabry-Hernandez I, Romano MJ. Am Fam Physician 2018 Jan 15;97(2):117-8. Access the abstract on PubMed®.

Prevalence and correlates of fentanyl-contaminated heroin exposure among young adults who use prescription opioids non-medically. Macmadu A, Carroll JJ, Hadland SE, et al. Addict Behav 2017 May;68:35-8. Epub 2017 Jan 6. Access the abstract on PubMed®.

Sociodemographic patterns of chronic disease: how the mid-south region compares to the rest of the country. Oates GR, Jackson BE, Partridge EE, et al. Am J Prev Med 2017 Jan;52(1s1):S31-9. Access the abstract on PubMed®.

Identifying the complexity of multiple risk factors for obesity among urban Latinas. Masterson Creber RM, Fleck E, Liu J, et al. J Immigr Minor Health 2017 Apr;19(2):275-84. Access the abstract on PubMed®.

Cardiac arrest survival in pediatric and general emergency departments. Michelson KA, Hudgins JD, Monuteaux MC, et al. Pediatrics 2018 Feb;141(2). Access the abstract on PubMed®.

Association between atopic dermatitis and serious cutaneous, multiorgan and systemic infections in US adults. Narla S, Silverberg JI. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol 2018 Jan;120(1):66-72.e11. Access the abstract on PubMed®.

Understanding systemic lupus erythematosus patients' desired outcomes and their perceptions of the risks and benefits of using corticosteroids. Ng X, dosReis S, Beardsley R, et al. Lupus 2018 Mar;27(3):475-83. Epub 2017 Aug 31. Access the abstract on PubMed®.

Contact Information

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Page last reviewed May 2019
Page originally created May 2019
Internet Citation: New AHRQ Views Blog Post: Seizing Opportunities in Three Essential Areas To Improve Patient Care. Content last reviewed May 2019. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. https://www.ahrq.gov/news/newsletters/e-newsletter/663.html
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