The article presents main characteristics of development of ambulatory polyclinic care to population exemplified by North East administrative okrug of Moscow under implementation of three-level system according program of modernization of metropolitan health care.
Over a span of four years we studied the number and type of patient contacts with the off-hour emergency service in a municipality in Western Norway. At the start of the period, the service was organised by each municipality, later more municipalities formed a regional service. At the end of the period, a list patient system was introduced.
All contacts from patients as well as activities performed by general practitioners on off-hour emergency duty were registered in four separate periods, from 1999 to 2002.
Simultaneously with shift from a local to a regional system, the proportion of home calls fell from 18% to less than 1%. The implementation of a list patient system combined with a regional system reduced the total number of contacts by 30%. Public expenditure was reduced by 66%.
The combination of a regional off-hour service and a list patient system gives an efficient organisation. The total work-load for doctors is significantly reduced and the quality of medical services improve; financial considerations also support a shift in off-hour emergency service towards regional organisation.
This commentary by Victorian Order of Nurses Canada, written in response to "Getting What We Pay For? The Value-for-Money Challenge," by McGrail, Zierler and Ip, answers four key questions about Canada's home and community care sector: (1) What are our objectives? (2) Where do we achieve good value now? (3) Where and why are we failing? and (4) What will help us do better? We conclude that although the home and community care sector offers great promise in meeting the evolving health and social needs of Canadians, it is not living up to its potential. We propose the development of a national, integrated approach to home and community care to help Canadians remain healthy and independent in their homes. This would represent a wise financial investment for governments and would contribute to the long-term health of Canadians.
The adoption of new medical technologies often generates losses in efficiency associated with the excess or insufficient acquisition of new equipment, an inappropriate choice (in terms of economic and clinical parameters) of medical equipment, and its poor use. Russia is a good example for exploring the problem of the ineffective adoption of new medical technologies due to the massive public investment in new equipment for medical institutions in 2006-2013. This study examines the procurement of new technologies in Russian hospitals to find the main causes of inefficiency. The research strategy was based on in-depth semistructured interviews with representatives of prominent actors (regional health care authorities, hospital executives, senior physicians). The main result is that inefficiencies arise from the contradiction between hospitals' and authorities' motivation for acquiring new technologies: hospitals tend to adopt technologies which bring benefits to their department heads and physicians and minimize maintenance and servicing costs, while the authorities' main concern is the initial cost of the technology.
Computer-based patient record systems have become very common in the primary health service, but their effects have seldom been documented. Three surveys were carried out in the municipality of Sør-Varanger, in 1993, 1994 and 1995, to discover how such a system has affected the running of the municipal medical centres. The most significant changes were organisational. Certain tasks changed hands, others were dispensed with, and new ones were added. Information on patients became more readily available, and services to the public were improved. Many more patients received an answer to questions concerning information in the case record, and far fewer forms had to be filled in manually. Despite this, computerisation had seemingly led to little change in effectiveness, and the total load of work remained the same. The survey also showed that simple extensions to the system could produce marked improvements.
Nurses working in the long-term care (LTC) sector face unique workplace stresses, demands and circumstances. Designing approaches to leadership training and other supportive human-resource strategies that reflect the demands of the LTC setting fosters a positive work life for nurses by providing them with the skills and knowledge necessary to lead the care team and to address resident and family issues. Through the St. Joseph's Health Centre Guelph demonstration site project, funded by the Nursing Secretariat of Ontario's Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, the Excelling as a Nurse Leader in Long Term Care training program and the Mentor Team program were developed to address these needs. Evaluation results show that not only have individual nurses benefitted from taking part in these programs, but also that the positive effects were felt in other parts of the LTC home (as reported by Directors of Care). By creating a generally healthier work environment, it is anticipated that these programs will also have a positive effect on recruitment and retention.
Norway introduced 32 priority guidelines for elective health treatment in the specialist health service in the period 2008-9. The guidelines were intended to reduce large differences in waiting times among hospitals, streamline referrals and ensure that patients accessed the necessary healthcare to which they were entitled for certain conditions. Referral information guided the priorities. As the referral information was key to future evaluation of the guidelines, this study validates the referral information in hospital patient records against discharge diagnoses, because only the discharge diagnosis is recorded in the Norwegian Patient Register (NPR) database, which is used in the main evaluation.
Of the specific conditions from 10 priority guidelines, 20 were selected for review for the period 2008-9 at 4 hospitals in Norway. The ICD-10 diagnoses per disease or condition were given in retrospect by clinicians who participated in the expert groups developing the priority guidelines. Reasons for deviations between referral information and discharge diagnoses were coded into four categories, according to the degree of precision of the former compared with the latter.
In all, 1854 medical records were available for review. The diagnostic precision of the referrals differed significantly between hospitals, and across the 2 years 2008 and 2009. The overall sensitivity was 0.93 (95% confidence interval 0.92-0.94). For the separate conditions, sensitivity was in the range 0.60-1.00. Experience showed that it was necessary to pay careful attention to the selection of ICD-10 diagnoses for identifying patients. The medical records of psychiatry patients were unavailable in some cases and for certain conditions some were unavailable after use of our record extraction algorithm.
The sensitivity of the referral information on diagnosis or condition was high compared with the discharge diagnosis for the 20 selected conditions from the 10 priority guidelines. Although the review assessed a limited number of the total, we consider the results sufficiently representative and, hence, they will allow use of the NPR data for analyses of the introduction and follow-up of the 32 priority guidelines.