Get a Life

By Judith Welles

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Get a Life: Good news

Two items caught my interest this week.  They show some of the positive efforts of corporations and government in investing funds to improve health. 

Despite the economy, many employers have figured out that promoting the health and wellness of their employees pays real dividends in productivity. 

According to MSNBC’s Eve Tahmincioglu, a survey of some 500 human resources and benefit executives by professional services firm Towers Perrin found that 50 percent of companies have or will introduce or increase investments in wellness and health promotion in 2009 and 2010.

Meanwhile, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is putting out news of “success stories” in health care. We all know that medical errors and infections arising from health care sicken and kill thousands of patients every year. A grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality made patient care safer in over 100 hospital ICUs in Michigan.

The project targeted catheter-related infections that ICU patients can get while in the hospital.  While it may sound fairly simple, getting clinicians to use a checklist when they insert catheters reduced the infections 66 percent throughout the state of Michigan. That meant saving more than 1,500 lives and $200 million in the first 18 months. 

For every dollar invested by the federal program, approximately $200 was saved.

Let’s give a hand to AHRQ for its good news.  If you know a success story, please tell us about it.

Posted by Judith Welles on Jul 15, 2009 at 12:12 PM


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