How to Streamline Health Care Delivery

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<p>Our modern health care system has spawned many specialized fields, including "patient advocacy," which offers guidance and even classes on "navigating the health care maze." But it simply shouldn't be so hard for patients to make sure that, for instance, their blood test results reach the right doctor's office in time for their appointment, or their cardiologist knows the names and amounts of the drugs their primary care doctor prescribed.<br><br>In a <a href="/aboutus/aboutus_show.htm?doc_id=680551">new column,</a> Commonwealth Fund president Karen Davis, Ph.D., and Anthony Shih, M.D., M.P.H., assistant vice president for the Fund's Quality Improvement and Efficiency program, explain that much of the problem lies with the fragmentation of our health care system, which drives low-quality, inappropriate, and inefficient care in a country filled with highly skilled health care professionals. In the column, Davis and Shih review the benefits of large physician practices and integrated delivery systems by highlighting Geisinger Health System, Denver Health, and the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation--all of which have been able to innovate while improving care and lowering costs.<br><br><strong>The Commonwealth Fund wants to hear your thoughts on health care delivery. Please submit a comment by clicking on the "Post a Comment" button on the right side of the publication page on our Web site.</strong></p>