N E W S R E L E A S E
Novermber 18, 1997
Patricia Q. Schoeni
THE QUALITY OF HEALTH CARE: A GROWING PROBLEM
Washington, D.C. (November 18, 1997) — “Serious problems of quality persist in our health care system despite the fact that we are spending one trillion dollars a year to provide care in this country,” said Henry E. Simmons, M.D., President of the National Coalition on Health Care.
“We are pleased to see that the Journal of the American Medical Association, in its latest issue released today, is highlighting the nature and magnitude of the quality problems in the U.S.,” Dr. Simmons added.
The National Coalition on Health Care recently released a study on quality that was conducted for the Coalition by a group of researchers at the respected RAND Corporation. The findings of the study indicate that, although a trillion dollars a year are spent on health care, many people are receiving more care than they need, many are receiving less than they need, and many are receiving the wrong kind of care. In addition, preventable and harmful errors are occurring frequently. This is true across the country, across different types of care and providers, and in different settings, including the nation’s preeminent health care institutions.
“It should not be a matter of when, where, or if, you receive care that makes the difference between whether you live or die,” said Dr. Simmons.
The study was conducted with support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. The National Coalition on Health Care is the nation’s largest and most broadly representative health care alliance working to improve America’s health care. The Coalition is a nonpartisan organization comprised of almost 100 members organizations representing 100 million Americans in large and small businesses, labor unions, and the nation’s consumer organizations, religious faiths and primary health care providers.
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