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El Paso-centric info and commentary from the Center of North America

Archive for June 24th, 2009

Healthcare scorecard, El Paso v McAllen

From the Washington Post, an interview with Atul Gawande, the author of New Yorker article comparing the medical systems of El Paso and McAllen. An excerpt from the interview:

The interesting thing to me is not that McAllen is different from elsewhere. it’s that El Paso is different than McAllen. They have the incentives to go in that direction! My hypothesis is that communities have local anchor institutions that foster values and norms that make the medical system successful. My sense is that in McAllen it was about a few institutions striking out in different ways that set the norm for what others did.

In the early 90s, McAllen was the same cost as El Paso. Three years later, they jumped into the top 10 or 20 and never really left. The first thing to really leap in price was home health care and it happened, it seems, because a few home health agencies came on the scene and began offering doctors something serious for their involvement: extra salaries as medical directors who don’t really do much. McAllen is also on the leading edge of for-profit innovations. They were early with a specialty hearts center, for instance, and cardiovascular operation rates began climbing. Then you had physician-owned imaging centers and physician-owned surgery centers and everything began going up a lot.

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Written by newspapertreeelpaso

June 24, 2009 at 1:17 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Health care, even for the border folk, is the talk of the town in DC

From the office of U.S. Rep, Silvestre Reyes, and taking place at a time when people are streaming in and out of Washington, D.c. to lobby on health care reform:

4TH ANNUAL BORDER HEALTH CONFERENCE IN WASHINGTON

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The 4th Annual Border Health Conference will be held tomorrow, June 24, 2009 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the South Congressional Meeting Room in the Capitol Visitor’s Center. The conference will address issues such as the recruitment and retention of health care professionals; public health issues unique to the Southwest Border; and the future of medicine along the border as Congress debates health care reform. Congressman Silvestre Reyes will participate in the conference. For a complete list of participants and panelists, please see the final agenda below.

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Written by newspapertreeelpaso

June 24, 2009 at 1:04 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

White, liberal Austin? Ask Socorro. Meanwhile, Westlake responds to racial taunting allegations.

Some discussion in Austin about the state high school baseball championship between the Austin-area Westlake and Socorro. A blog entry yesterday had some of the discussion. You can view some of the comments below.

Meanwhile, here’s the follow-up today, in which the Westlake folks issue a non-apologetic apology:

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Written by newspapertreeelpaso

June 24, 2009 at 12:25 pm

Posted in Uncategorized