A Communitywide Intervention to Improve Outcomes and Reduce Disability among Injured Workers in Washington State

Authors


Thomas Wickizer, Department of Health Services, Box 357660, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-7660 (e-mail:tomwick@u.washington.edu).

Abstract

One pressing challenge facing the U.S. health care system is the development of effective policies and clinical management strategies to address deficiencies in health care quality. In collaboration with researchers at the University of Washington, the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries has created a communitywide delivery system intervention to improve health outcomes and reduce disability among injured workers. This intervention is currently being tested in two sites in western and eastern Washington. So far, it appears to be possible to engage physicians and health care institutions in quality improvement initiatives and to form effective public-private partnerships for this purpose. Furthermore, collaborating with university researchers may help enhance the scientific rigor of the quality improvement initiative and create more opportunities for a successful evaluation.

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