Hospitals must restructure care in order to reduce costs

Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter says that hospitals and doctors must structure their processes around patients’ conditions, not around medical specialties in order to address cost issues, according to Boston.com. 

The article states that hospitals and health care systems across the country are experimenting with ways to increase value and redesign care, including: 

  • Brigham and Women’s Hospital is redesigning care in areas including cardiovascular disease, cancer, women’s health, neuroscience, and musculoskeletal practices.
  • Partners Hospitals in Boston are shifting more basic health care to affiliates in the suburbs, and keeping more complicated procedures at the larger teaching hospitals.
  • MD Anderson in Houston has developed a network of satellite clinics in the Houston for patients to receive chemotherapy and radiation, and patients only have to go to the main campus for critical procedures.

Porter also says that measuring outcomes and cost for every patient is crucial to lowering the cost of health care.

(Sources: Boston.com, http://boston.com, February 6, 2011)