Vancouver physician uses Webbased patient monitoring

first_imgMost of America’s health plans follow care recommendations established by the Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set, a tool created by the private, nonprofit National Committee for Quality Assurance.Dr. Terry Williams has 1,940 patients.Some haven’t checked in for years. Others require consistent medical oversight for things like chronic disease, constant pain or medication management.Now the Vancouver physician is part of an innovative Web-based system designed to improve care for all his patients.Called the panel support tool, it can keep tabs on high-maintenance patients and reach out to people who go to the doctor only when they see blood spurting.“It’s all about better and appropriate care for the patients,” said Williams, a family medicine physician at the Kaiser Permanente medical center in Orchards.And there is a big gap in care, according to a study published recently by Kaiser researchers.“Patients in the U.S. receive only about half of the preventive and follow-up care now recommended by national guidelines,” said Dr. Adrianne Feldstein, senior investigator at Kaiser’s Center for Health Research in Portland and lead author of a study published in The American Journal of Managed Care.The panel support tool addresses that shortfall by comparing the care the patient is receiving to what’s recommended by national guidelines.With the world’s largest nongovernmental set of electronic medical records, Kaiser can sift information for an individual patient, or sort out groups of people with a specific condition.last_img read more

Republican senators request local party suggestion to fill vacancy

first_imgMat-Su Borough Assembly member Randall Kowalke is pictured in the assembly portrait. Gov. Bill Walker named him to the vacant state Senate seat vacated by Mike Dunleavy, but Senate Republicans want someone suggested by local Republicans. (Photo courtesy of Matanuska-Susitna Borough)The Republican members of the state Senate said Tuesday they want Gov. Bill Walker to ask Senate District E Republicans for more suggestions on who should replace Mike Dunleavy if he won’t pick one of the existing three nominees.Listen nowSenate President Pete Kelly and Majority Leader Peter Micciche said in a letter to Walker that it would unfair to either confirm or reject Walker’s appointment of Randall Kowalke to replace Dunleavy.Walker responded in a letter by saying he has no intention of delaying the process by requesting more names while Kowalke’s appointment is still pending. Walker, a former Republican turned independent, said members of the Republican-led Senate majority urged Kowalke’s appointment. The governor also said that if the Senate Republicans reject Kowalke, he would forward another name.Walker appointed Kowalke on Friday, instead of one of the district party nominees. They are Rep. George Rauscher, teacher Todd Smoldon and organic food worker Tom Braund.Traditionally, governors have filled vacancies with one of three nominees nominated by district parties. But Walker also didn’t pick one of House District 40 Democrats’ original nominees after Dean Westlake resigned.If the Senate Republicans don’t act on Kowalke, the position will remain vacant.State law gives the governor 30 days to appoint someone to fill a vacancy. The person must be from the same political party as the previous office holder, and the sitting members of the chamber from the same party must approve them.State law doesn’t limit the amount of time Senate Republicans have to confirm Walker’s appointee.last_img read more