ASQ health care experts share reform advice

Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 10:01 am

Recent studies estimate that health care systems in the U.S. waste $600 to $800 billion annually. The Milwaukee-based American Society for Quality (ASQ) recently released the results of a poll conducted with U.S. health care quality improvement experts that shows that solving payment problems and restructuring malpractice suits/tort reform top the list of areas that would help eliminate waste.     

“For years, the health care sector has ignored some of the key factors leading to waste, said Peter Andres, ASQ president. “Health care legislation must start ensuring incentives and requirements for sustained use of waste reduction tools and continuous process improvement.”

According to the ASQ poll, health care quality experts believe payment systems like billing, coding and insurance claims would be one of their first target areas. The poll indicates that addressing those issues is critical in order to reduce the massive overload of billing and insurance paperwork that is causing added expense as well as frustration and delays for patients and doctors. In addition, the limited information-sharing that currently exists in the health care system creates re-work and serious errors in some cases. 

This issue was closely followed by the need to establish tort reform and limit liability claims against physicians in order to decrease the cost of liability insurance paid by physicians which is generally one of their greatest costs of operation.

The online poll was conducted with 120 health care quality professionals who are members of ASQ (The American Society for Quality), These quality experts work in a diverse range of health care organizations from hospitals to public health departments. While quality improvement methods have proven successful in manufacturing environments, these management methods have recently been applied in health care, as well. 

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