Headlines

Australia - New report reveals out-of-pocket costs for Medicare services This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This report released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) has found that half of the country’s patients pay a contribution to non-hospital medical services. The proportion of patients with out-of-pocket costs varies considerably across the 31 Primary Health Network areas in Australia’s six states and two territories.

Canada - Healthcare system needs to catch up to the requirements of the Google Generation This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Findings released by the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) show that the so-called Google Generation of young adults are Canada’s most eager adopters of technologies to manage their own health. The CMA warns that to address the impact of this generation, policy changes are urgently needed to scale up technology adoption in health care.

Ireland - Minister Harris publishes Sláintecare Implementation Strategy marking important milestone towards delivering health reform This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The Irish Ministry of Health has published an implementation strategy providing a framework for the planned reform of health services in the country. Reforms will include a reorganization of health services administration, a focus on community care, investments in mental health, a national clinical strategy for hospitals, and a rollout of eHealth systems and infrastructure.

USA - Tools for Supporting Social Service and Health Care Partnerships to Address Social Determinants of Health This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS) has identified new strategies to facilitate partnerships between community-based organizations (CBOs) and healthcare institutions that effectively address social determinants of health. The CHCS provides a set of resources and tools to strengthen collaborative activities. They include partnership models, value articulation, and ways to accurately estimate the costs of partnering.

Upcoming Events

Australia - Global Evidence and Implementation Summit 2018
This conference takes place October 22 to 24, 2018, in Melbourne. It will bring together experts from across the world to talk about their experiences in generating and implementing evidence for better policy and practice. Funding agencies, policy makers, practitioners, knowledge brokers, and researchers will benefit from discovering the latest evidence synthesis and implementation science research and practice strategies for improving the lives of individuals, families and communities.

Kazakhstan - Global Conference on Primary Health Care
Co-hosted by the Government of Kazakhstan, WHO and UNICEF, this conference will bring international representatives together to renew a commitment to primary health care to achieve universal health coverage and the Sustainable Development Goals. It will look at workforce issues, disruptive innovations and integrated service delivery, among other topics. The conference takes place in Astana, Kazakhstan on October 25 and 26, 2018.

Reports and Issue Portfolios

Australia - Practical innovation: Closing the social infrastructure gap in health and ageing This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This report from PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PWC) argues that Australia needs a health system model focused on wellbeing as much as illness and a more integrated, preventive and outcomes-focused approach to health care. The report identifies approaches to transform the current health system, improve integration, and implement a facility to fund and support new healthcare partnerships and collaborations.

Brazil - The Brazilian health system at crossroads: progress, crisis and resilience This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Published by BMJ Global Health, this paper analyzes the development of Brazil’s health system since 2000 and the effects of economic and political crises that led to the implementation of austerity policies. Examining changes to health financing, resources and service coverage, it finds that, despite expansion of universal health coverage up to 2014, significant structural problems persist in Brazil’s system.

Canada - Results of the 2018 Health Care in Canada (HCIC) survey This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Since 1998, the HCIC survey has collected data on how the adult public and health professionals in Canada perceive the state of our health care system. The 2018 HCIC Survey edition covers important topics including Pharmacare, medication adherence, wait times, caregiving and the opioid crisis. To learn more about the HCIC Survey and 2018 results please visit the HCIC website.

Canada - Standardising costs or standardising care? Qualitative evaluation of the implementation and impact of a hospital funding reform in Ontario, Canada This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Since 2011, Ontario has phased in hospital funding reforms emphasizing quality-based procedures (QBPs) with pre-set prices per episode of care. This paper explores hospital use of a standard QBP handbook that specifies episode of care pathways, intended to reduce variation in care and cost. Based on interviews with 46 informants involved in QBP design, implementation, and in-hospital support, the paper calls for a more flexible, tailored approach rather than one-size-fits-all handbooks.

Europe - Medical human resources planning in Europe: A literature review of the forecasting models This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This paper aims to analyze models used in Europe to anticipate supply of and demand for physicians. It finds that quantitative forecasting of physician needs is limited to healthcare consumption and rarely considers overall needs and service targets. Horizon scanning enables an evaluation of the changes in supply and demand in an uncertain future, and post-hoc analysis is rarely implemented, but potentially valuable.

Ireland - Independent Review Group – Private Practice in Public Hospitals This hyperlink will open in a new window.
In 2017, the Irish government established an Independent Review Group (IRG) to conduct an impact analysis on separating private practice from the public hospital system. This publication reports on a consultation led by the IRG that asked about existing arrangement of private practice in public hospitals and suggestions for implementing the proposed future separation. It includes submissions from 47 individuals, hospitals, healthcare professional associations and public service unions.

UK - Guide to reducing long hospital stays This hyperlink will open in a new window.
In the UK, over 350,000 patients spend more than three weeks in hospital each year. Published by Improvement NHS, this guide offers practical steps and tactics to support the National Health Service (NHS) and its partners in establishing an optimal approach to managing hospital length of stay. While aimed at acute hospitals, the guide makes reference to how system partners can play a supporting role.

UK - Understanding the effectiveness and mechanisms of a social prescribing service: a mixed method analysis This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Social prescribing reflects the growing role of the voluntary and community sector in health and could help reduce the pressure on primary care services to manage patients with conditions that can be addressed without medical intervention. This research assesses a social prescribing scheme in Northern England in which ‘Wellbeing Coordinators’ offer support to individuals and provide advice on local community services. The study finds a range of positive outcomes as a result of service users engaging with the service.

USA - Advanced Primary Care: A Key Contributor to Successful ACOs This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This evidence report from the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC) examines the contribution of patient-centred medical homes (PCMHs) to the success or failure of accountable care organizations (ACOs) using both qualitative and quantitative methods. The qualitative analysis involved two literature reviews and input from an expert committee. Quantitative analysis is based on the 2014 Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) data set. The authors find interdependence between PCMHs and ACOs in improving population health and lowering costs.

International - The Core Dimensions of Integrated Care: A Literature Review to Support the Development of a Comprehensive Framework for Implementing Integrated Care This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Presenting a review of the literature on care integration design, this research explores prerequisites to successful implementation across different international contexts. The study analyses 710 prior studies and focuses on chronic conditions (COPD, diabetes, and geriatric and mental health conditions), identifies core dimensions of integrated care and distinguishes 175 elements and factors associated with successful implementation.

International - The association between social exclusion or inclusion and health in EU and OECD countries: a systematic review This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Social exclusion (SE), the inability to participate fully in society, is one of the driving forces of health inequalities. Evidence on the subject is pertinent but scarce. This review systematically summarizes 22 studies examining the association between the multidimensional concepts of SE, social inclusion (SI), and health among adults in European Union (EU) and OECD countries.