Health care must-reads: Hospital safety, a “national disgrace” and a health care disrupter
Hospital safety rankings, a hospital program that connects vulnerable patients with community resources and a blast aimed squarely at the US health care system topped last week’s most-read stories by health care leaders. A ranking of disrupters included only one health company in its top 10, and pharmaceutical profits continue to outpace earnings by other health care companies.
The Leapfrog Group's latest hospital safety rankings gave 168 US hospitals out of about 2,600 failing or near-failing grades, while about one-third got A grades. A report from the Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality at Johns Hopkins Medicine, based on the Leapfrog data, found about 160,000 people die a year from avoidable medical errors, down from 205,000 in 2016.
Full Story: USA Today
Kaiser Permanente's "Thrive Local" initiative will attempt to address social determinants of health by letting providers connect patients with community resources, and it has the potential to improve population health, create a more efficient system, promote community organizations and reduce physician burnout, said Northwest Permanente CEO Dr. Imelda Dacones. "We're really getting [our] arms around all those things that impact our patients, our populations, and our communities outside of our reach and creating a more holistic intersection between the social and medical sectors to begin to address total health," Dacones said.
Full Story: HealthLeaders Media
Berkshire Hathaway Vice Chairman Charlie Munger called the US health care system a "national disgrace" and said it should be replaced with a single-payer system. Munger said single-payer health care would be less expensive with better outcomes.
Full Story: Yahoo
CNBC's 2019 Disruptor 50 list includes just one health care company among the top 10: GoodRx, which is focused on reducing prescription drug costs. Virta Health, which works on reversing diabetes, and Veritas Genetics, which provides whole genome sequencing, also are on the list
An Axios analysis of 2019 quarterly profits in the health care industry shows nine of the 10 top companies were pharmaceutical manufacturers, with UnitedHealth Group rounding out the list. The 12 most profitable drug companies together reported more than $29 billion in profits.
Full Story: Axios
Tom Parks is a health editor at SmartBrief who focuses on health care, leadership and nursing as well as care at the beginning and end of life. He launched and edits the SmartBrief for Health Care Leaders newsletter.
This "most read" feature reflects the most read items in SmartBrief for Health Care Leaders from the previous week. Sign up for SmartBrief for Health Care Leaders to get news like this in your inbox, or check out all of SmartBrief’s health care newsletters, covering health IT, news for insurers, news for providers and more.