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  • Commonwealth Fund Says Americans Are Sicker, Skip Care More Than Citizens of Other High-Income Nations Modern Healthcare by By Shelby Livingston—Despite major coverage expansions under the Affordable Care Act, Americans are sicker and have more trouble affording care than 10 other high-income countries, a new survey shows. Moreover, almost half of the poorest U.S. adults can't get the care they need, and many resort to the emergency room for treatment, according to the Commonwealth Fund study.  The non-partisan group surveyed almost 27,000 adults across 11 high-income countries about their health and experience with their country's healthcare system. The nations surveyed included Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Read: In New Survey of 11 Countries, U.S. Adults Still Struggle with Access to and Affordability of Health Care

  • How AHRQ's Low Profile Threatens Work on Health Care Best Practices Modern Healthcare by  Elizabeth Whitman—AHRQ—pronounced “arc” by wonks—is quietly lauded by fans and vocally scorned by detractors. Its mission of figuring out how to improve the healthcare system is all the more daunting for its relatively puny annual budget that for several years has hovered around $430 million. But research supported by AHRQ, sometimes solely so, has transformed the underpinnings of a sector that not only directly manages life and death but also encompasses nearly one-fifth of the U.S. economy. The HHS agency's anonymity might be inherent in the nature of its work, but its obscurity has serious implications as federal healthcare policy is thrown into tumult with the election of Donald Trump to the presidency. “If an airbag goes off in your car, you know it saved your life,” said Michael Millenson, a national healthcare consultant who also teaches at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine. “If a physician does a checklist before your surgery and finds a problem that could've killed you, not only will you not see it because you're asleep, but nobody will attribute that to a government effort to get checklists used in operating rooms.”

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