Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Lee Corso makes first public speaking appearence since stroke

ESPN Analyst, Lee Corso, visited Oklahoma yesterday to speak to a group about life after his stroke. Corso suffered a stroke in May 2009 and this was his first public speaking event since that day.

Consider these statistics from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association:
  • Each year about 795,000 people experience a new or recurrent stroke. About 600,000 of these are first attacks, and 185,000 are recurrent attacks.
  • On average, every 40 seconds someone in the United States has a stroke.
  • When considered separately from other cardiovascular diseases, stroke ranks No. 3 among all causes of death, behind diseases of the heart and cancer.
  • On average, every three to four minutes someone dies of a stroke.
You can see an interview with Corso on the website here.

White Paper Lays Out the Benefit of Registries

Patient registries—databases of clinical information critical to evaluating care processes and outcomes—can play a critical role in measuring quality and cost of health care, yet they are often limited by shortcomings in design and function. Using registries to advance performance measurement and ultimately improve care will involve finding solutions to what are currently common registry limitations.

The Robert Wood Johnson recently released a white paper that describes solutions for leveraging both administrative and registry data to make additional performance results available, as well as further increase registry use for performance measurement and other purposes.

Read the full report here.

At the beginning of this year a new rule took effect from the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS Final FY 2010 Rule) which focuses on improving stroke patient care in hospitals. It requires hospitals submitting Medicare claims for stroke to let CMS know if they participate in a database registry for stroke care, such as that maintained by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines-Stroke (GWTG-Stroke) quality improvement initiative.  
Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke puts the expertise of the American Stroke Association to work for hospital teams, helping to ensure that the care they provide to stroke patients is aligned with the latest scientific guidelines.
Most hospitals that implement the Get With The Guidelines-Stroke quality improvement program realize measurable results. It’s a difference that shows in the lives of patients and their families, in the satisfaction felt by caregivers empowered to do their best and in the financial health of participating hospitals.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Good News for Child Nutrition Both at Home and in D.C.

Last week the Edmond Sun and Oklahoman published a story about Edmond Public Schools taking a significant step towards improving the health of their school children by providing healthier lunch options. This comes on the heels of the U.S. Senate passing the $4.5 billion "Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act" this past Thursday, which expands children's access to federal nutrition programs and will improve the nutritional quality of school lunches. The legislation marks the largest investment in child nutrition programs since their inception.

Oklahoma is facing a serious health crisis affecting our most important assets – our children. Every year the children in our state are becoming increasingly overweight because of decreased physical activity and poor nutrition. And, sadly, as troubling as this is for our children’s current health, this is just the beginning of a possible lifetime of poor health and complications from being overweight and obese.

Overweight and Obesity are leading risk factors for cardiovascular diseases, and every year more children are diagnosed with Type II or “adult onset” diabetes, something relatively unheard of just a few years ago. Cardiovascular diseases will cost Americans nearly $352 billion this year, and almost $100 billion of that is the result of obesity.

We must make the choice to invest in the future of our children and their health, rather than let them slip into a life of lethargy and poor health. My hope is that all schools follow the example of Edmond and takes steps to provide healthier food for their children.

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