Hot topics in health care • September 2012

  • AHRQ ranks Wisconsin as top performing state for health care
  • Report says smoking ban is helping decrease smoke exposure
  • Wisconsin women now get free co-pay benefits
  • 11 hospital executives among America’s “Leaders to Know”  

 AHRQ ranks Wisconsin as top performing state for health care

High quality, accessible care is a hallmark of Wisconsin’s health systems. In June, the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) recognized Wisconsin for five years in row as being one of the top performing states based on the quality of its health care. The Agency analyzed data from a large number of sources that measured the quality of care delivered in hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, and home health agencies.

What does this mean to our patients and employers? Higher quality health care gets people back to their normal activities faster, and they stay healthier. High quality care delivers higher value for your health care dollar. To read local news articles, CLICK HERE.

To help showcase this amazing achievement, the Wisconsin Hospital Association (WHA) launched a long-term (12-18 months) campaign to educate our communities and business leaders about the high quality and high value care that is a hallmark of the Wisconsin health care system.

Over the course of the campaign, employers will be encouraged to contact their local hospital leaders to learn how they are improving care locally and how business and health care can work together to improve both community and employee health. To read more about the campaign, CLICK HERE.

New report says smoking ban is helping decrease smoke exposure

The Wisconsin Medical Journal recently published an article stating secondhand smoke exposure had decreased and no-smoking policies in households had increased. According to the report and Wisconsin Health News, “Since July 2010, exposure to smoke outside the home dropped from 55 percent to 32 percent, and from 13 percent to 7 percent at home. Meanwhile, the percentage of residents with no-smoking policies in their households rose from 74 percent to 80 percent.”

“This report clearly shows that because of the smoke-free air law, residents across the state are able to breathe smoke-free air at home and work, and that is great for our families and children,” Maureen Busalacchi, executive director of SmokeFree Wisconsin said.

The report was conducted by researchers from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, who utilized data from the Survey of the Health of Wisconsin.

To read the entire report, CLICK HERE.

Wisconsin women now get free co-pay benefits

Nearly 47 million women (968,000 in Wisconsin) will now benefit from new health plans that provide certain preventive services free of charge under provisions in the federal health reform law that took effect August 1. The eight co-pay free benefits include contraception, well woman visits and breastfeeding supplies.

Other preventive benefits that new health plans must now cover are gestational diabetes screenings, domestic violence counseling, contraceptive education and counseling, HPV testing, and HIV screenings and counseling.

To read more, CLICK HERE.

11 hospital executives among America’s “Leaders to Know”

On August 8, Becker’s Hospital Review presented a report, listing 300 hospital executives who are among the America’s “Hospital and Health System Leaders to Know.”

Among that list were 11 Wisconsin leaders. According to the release, “The following men and women have shown admirable dedication to the improvement of healthcare delivery at local, regional and national levels. Some leaders have held their positions for a few months, while others have been at the helm for more than 20 years, but all have demonstrated great promise and skill to the American healthcare landscape.”

Wisconsin hospital executives on the list:

  • Joan Coffman, President and CEO, St. Joseph’s Hospital (Chippewa Falls)
  • Faye Deich, RN, COO, Sacred Heart Hospital
  • Duane Erwin, CEO, Aspirus
  • Dr. Brian Ewert, President, Marshfield Clinic
  • Dr. Dean Gruner, President and CEO, ThedaCare
  • Catherine Jacobson, President and CEO, Froedtert Health
  • Donna Katen-Bahensky, President and CEO, University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics
  • Steven Little, President and CEO, Agnesian HealthCare
  • Dr. Paul Summerside, CMO, BayCare Clinic and AuroraBayCare Medical Center
  • Peggy Troy, RN, MSN, CEO, Children’s Hospital and Health System
  • Dr. Nick Turkal, President and CEO, Aurora Health Care

For details or to see the entire list, CLICK HERE.

This post was researched and written by Trish Skram, media/public relations specialist at Mercy Health System. Feel free to connect with Trish Skram on her Facebook page at Trish Skram “PR Gal” or on LinkedIn.

Leave a Reply