Taking Action Express: MN Earns an “A” in Transparency; Join Us in January; No More Hollow Resolutions…

December 22, 2014

ModernThe Weekly Buzz: 2014 Report Card on Transparency of Physician Quality Information is Here

At a time when consumers are expected to pay an increasingly large share of their health care costs, access to information that helps them make care decisions is critical.

Spending on medical care varies dramatically depending on the clinics that Minnesotans choose – from $269 to $826 per patient per month – according to a first-of-its-kind analysis designed to make patients wiser shoppers and doctors more accountable for the cost of care, as reported in this new Star Tribune article.

Additionally, the Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute (HCI3) released its second annual State Report Card on Transparency of Physician Quality Information this month, which shows how well states performed in providing objective and useful quality information to residents. Although Minnesota earned one of only two “A”s in the entire country, there is still a lot of work to be done. Take a look at the report to find out how other states are doing at providing public quality information to consumers. Read more about how The Action Group is contributing to continuous improvement in transparency statewide.

PrintSpecial Open Action Group Meeting in January

The Action Group’s first meeting of the year will be set aside to reflect on the accomplishments and key findings of 2014, and to set forth our plans to continue advancing toward our goals in 2015. Current members are encouraged to bring friends or colleagues who are contemplating membership in 2015. If you are not yet a member and would like to receive an invitation, please contact us at info@mnhealthactiongroup.org. There is no cost to attend, and we will be serving a hot breakfast.

wsjLosing Weight Needs to be Much More Than a Hollow New Year’s Resolution

Last week, Taking Action Express featured a new report by the McKinsey Global Institute, which revealed that the global cost of obesity has risen to $2 trillion annually. In response to the obesity epidemic, employers are experimenting with increasingly aggressive, personalized approaches to weight loss for workers. From wearable technology, to health care coverage for weight-loss surgeries and drugs, to mental-health counseling, the goal is to get obese employees to normal weight, or even overweight, to save employers an average of nine percent of the money they spend on health care or lose in productivity due to sick time, according to this new Wall St. Journal article.

In response to high member interest in continuously improving employer-sponsored wellness and weight loss programs, the final Action Group member meeting of 2014 featured special guest speaker Jerry Noyce, president and CEO of Health Enhancement Research Organization (HERO), who discussed successful wellness incentive design and recent Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) lawsuits. To learn more, click here to read his blog.

actionbriefProstate Cancer Action Brief Now Available

As a member of the National Business Coalition on Health, The Action Group makes well over a dozen Action Briefs available to members and non-members. Topics vary widely, from shared decision making, to chronic and serious health conditions, to patient safety, to price transparency, and all include actionable workplace support strategies. This new Action Brief on prostate cancer is now available at mnhealthactiongroup.org.





Thought for the Week

“Tackling weight loss raises thorny issues at the office, and employers are working hard to avoid being seen as targeting certain workers. About 71% of employers representing 600,000 workers said that overcoming stigma and embarrassment represented the biggest hurdle to an effective corporate weight-loss program.”

From an October 2015 Northeast Business Group on Health Survey