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In the United States, one of six children under the age of 21 suffers from a chronic condition, yet only half receive the care they need. Often, the care is episodic, oriented toward acute events, and does not include the longer-term, longitudinal elements critical to achieving better outcomes.
As the number of children and adolescents living with chronic disease rises, improving the healthcare system’s ability to deliver effective, evidence-based care will become increasingly important.
Within the Anderson Center and across Cincinnati Children’s, we believe that our biggest opportunity to improve overall child health lies in improving clinical and functional outcomes for children with chronic disease. The key is the linkage of clinical application to research, the use of improvement science principles to guide our efforts, transparency as we share our progress, and most importantly, the placement of patients and their families at the center of our work.
In combining these elements, we push the boundaries of what is possible and increase the likelihood that our patients will optimize their health and well-being and be able to play, go to school and socialize in the way that all children deserve.
As part of our 2015 strategic plan, we have set a goal of measuring and improving care and outcomes for more than 100 chronic conditions. Currently, we are focusing on more than 80 of those conditions. In chronic care work, measurement is not simply a method to determine the effectiveness of our efforts, but a goal in itself. Within the field of chronic conditions, disease-based data are limited, and for the majority of conditions there is little information on how well kids do and the quality of care they receive.
At Cincinnati Children’s, we believe we are uniquely positioned to lead the field in improving chronic disease outcomes.
We have a fundamental belief in the importance of improving chronic disease outcomes. We put families at the center of our work.
Research plays a central role in our work to improve chronic disease outcomes and push the boundaries of existing knowledge. And we have a culture that supports innovation.
We have committed institutional investment with alignment across organizational entities.
Our nimble clinical systems incorporate new knowledge into the practice of treating chronic conditions. We use learning networks to accelerate the pace and reach of our work.
We have the ability to apply improvements at large scale across conditions and have a track record of pioneering the application of quality improvement to chronic disease outcomes.
We use a system that provides cross-cutting support across chronic diseases for key aspects of care, such as self-management and care coordination.
Another approach that we use is a sequenced roadmap that allows disease-based clinical teams to optimize care and push boundaries to achieve the best for our patients.
> Cincinnati Children's offers condition-specific outcomes for families and others to evaluate.
> Key driver diagrams: caring for children and adolescents with a chronic condition. See system level and team level (.pdf).
> Self-management support for healthcare professionals (.pdf)
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