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Diabetes, heart problems and redundant imaging scans among Johns Hopkins-led performance improvement topics on ‘high-value care'

Press releases may be edited for formatting or style | November 18, 2019 Cardiology CT X-Ray
Experts from 80 medical centers in the U.S., Canada and Norway will convene Nov. 15–17 in Baltimore, Maryland, to share best practices and performance improvement initiatives designed to reduce unnecessary tests, treatments and procedures and improve the overall value of health care.

“Teaching hospitals are coming together to share what we are doing to make healthcare more affordable while maintaining rigorous standards of quality, and to prepare the next generation of physicians to deliver high value health care,” says Pamela Johnson, M.D., vice chair of quality and safety for the radiology department at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Some 200 poster presentations and 60 lectures are expected to be featured at the meeting, a collaboration between the High Value Practice Academic Alliance, which was co-founded by Johnson, and the American Hospital Association.

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The following summaries describe abstracts being presented by Johns Hopkins experts at the third annual Architecture of High Value Health Care Conference. All the summaries are embargoed for the time of presentation.


Approximately 25% of people admitted to community-based hospitals have diabetes, according to Johns Hopkins researchers. “That’s a huge population of people living with diabetes who are currently being cared for in our hospitals,” says Mihail Zilbermint, M.D., chief of endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism at Johns Hopkins Community Physicians – Suburban Hospital. Many are admitted because of medical issues unrelated to their diabetes, but the chronic condition, which affects more than 30 million people in the U.S., can make other conditions, such as heart disease and neurological problems, worse.

Zilbermint says that having a specialized diabetes team available to patients in community hospitals might lead to earlier discharge, a medical concept long thought to increase patients’ quality of life. Most community hospitals, adds Zilbermint, lack comprehensive diabetes care for inpatients.

To address this challenge, Zilbermint borrowed a successful model used at The Johns Hopkins Hospital and other academic institutions, which provides inpatients with care from a team of experts who specialize in diabetes. The team includes an endocrinologist, nurse practitioner, dietitian and certified diabetes educator.

The team saw some 850 patients with diabetes while they were admitted to Suburban Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland. During the year and a half-long study, the length of stay in the hospital decreased by 27% (from 7.8 to 5.7 days) among patients who received care from the diabetes team. However, there was no change in the length of stay for 3,804 patients who did not receive care from the diabetes team.

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