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'The Business of Health Care Report'

Controlling the Cost of Care

Click to hear the taped broadcast.

I’m Doug Hawthorne, CEO of Texas Health Resources, with “The Business of Health Care Report.”

Inpatient hospital care in Dallas–Fort Worth costs 10 percent less than the national average, according to our analysis of data from the Institute of Medicine. So why do we keep hearing that D-FW is a high-cost area for health care?

Part of the answer is that post-acute care services drive the largest share of costs above the national average. Home health services are 240 percent compared to the national average, long term care is 300 percent and hospice care is 150 percent of the national average.

The problem comes from a lack of coordination across the continuum of services. Texas Health is working with physicians, employers, payers and other health systems to coordinate services across the continuum and bend the cost curve.

We recently announced a partnership with LHC Group and Methodist Health System of Dallas for coordinated home health services.

Texas Health is also strengthening the role of primary care physicians by offering data-gathering and analysis tools that enable them to develop ongoing, proactive relationships with their patients. We believe this will help them manage their population of patients more efficiently and intervene before health issues become serious. They will be better equipped to provide the right services at the right time in the right place.

For our faith-based health system — Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Harris Methodist and Texas Health Arlington Memorial — I’m Doug Hawthorne.

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