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GROUP PRACTICE PHYSICIANS KEY CHANGE AGENTS IN HEALTH REFORM

 DETROIT, Oct. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- On the heels of the announcement of Clinton's health care reform proposal, a physician network of the nation's leading group practices is meeting to discuss ways to improve care for patients. Borrowing technicians from industry such as statistical thinking and benchmarking, members of the Group Practice Improvement Network (GPIN) will be meeting Oct. 12-13 in Southfield, Mich., to exchange information on quality improvement efforts ranging from new and less expensive protocols for treating cancer patients to streamlining testing procedures -- all with an eye toward improving quality and controlling costs.
 GPIN is a network of physician and administrative leaders from 58 multispecialty group practices representing approximately 15,000 physicians nationwide. Attending the conference will be representatives from Mayo Clinic, Kaiser Permanente and other nationally recognized group practices including Michigan GPIN members -- Burns Clinic in Petoskey, Henry Ford Medical Group, Metro Medical Group (Health Alliance Plan), and The Detroit Medical Center.
 "Physicians are key catalysts in health care reform," according to GPIN organizer, Vinod K. Sahney, Ph.D. "Profound change in the nation's health care delivery system cannot be affected without involving physicians. With the introduction of health reform and the concept of providing care through local health alliances or networks, GPIN physicians, all of whom are organized in group practices, are examining ways to improve the delivery of care from improving outcomes and patient satisfaction, to reducing re-work and paperwork."
 The meeting presenters are recognized leaders in health care quality improvement initiatives including:
 -- Paul B. Batalden, M.D., vice president of Medical Care, Head Quality Resource Group, Hospital Corporation of America, will share a five-year plan for the continuous improvement of health care.
 -- Donald Berwick, M.D., president and chief executive officer of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, will focus on the importance of effective networking among health care providers and leaders in this time of health care reform.
 -- Elizabeth Armstrong, director of Medical Education for Harvard Medical School, will talk about the unique skills required for physician education and learning. Part of her presentation will focus on the movie, "The Doctor," starring William Hurt.
 -- Henry Ford Health System (HFHS) President and Chief Executive Officer Gail L. Warden, author of several papers on quality improvement in health care and chairman-elect designate of the American Hospital Association, will talk about the role of leadership in quality as a business strategy.
 GPIN was developed by a 12-member committee chaired by William A. Conway Jr., M.D., vice president of Henry Ford Medical Group, and organized by Sahney, senior vice president, Planning and Strategic Development, HFHS.
 Some of the many clinical and administrative process improvements made by various GPIN members nationwide and available for sharing among GPIN members, include improved data management, pain control for terminal cancer patients, reduced waiting times for pediatric visits and prescriptions, alternative methods for evaluating patients with chest pain, guidelines for primary care physician treatment of back pain, and improved tracking and follow-up of patients with breast lumps, among numerous others.
 Kristen Gause, R.N., M.S.N., serves as executive director of GPIN, which is headquartered at HFHS offices in Detroit.
 -0- 10/11/93
 /CONTACT: Doreen Saputo of Henry Ford Health System, 313-876-2882/


CO: Group Practice Improvement Network; Henry Ford Health System ST: Michigan IN: HEA SU:

SB -- DE026 -- 0796 10/11/93 16:54 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 11, 1993
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