March 1, 2019

Shared Decision Making: Plans for 2019

When I talk with my doctors about my health and especially about my daughter’s health, I want and expect them to be respectful, base what they say in available evidence, and to help me understand the pros and cons of any decisions. Lucky for us we live in Washington State where our Health Care Authority…

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February 1, 2019

Introducing our Revised Lumbar Fusion Bundled Payment Model and Warranty

For the past year, our Accountable Payment Models workgroup has been reviewing evidence, hearing from community members, and revising our Lumbar Fusion Bundled Payment Model and Warranty. At our recent Bree Collaborative January meeting, members voted to adopt the bundle and warranty. Our goal in this revision was to respond to changes in the evidence…

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January 1, 2019

New Year, New Perspectives

The final comic strip of Calvin and Hobbes speaks to the understated genius of author Bill Watterson. Calvin and the tiger Hobbes are walking in a waist-deep field of snow discussing how “the world looks brand new…like having a big sheet of white paper to draw on.” Calvin turns to Hobbes and says “It’s a…

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December 1, 2018

Behavioral Health, Equity, and Opioid Prescribing: Looking Back at 2018

Our average life expectancy in America has declined again, as it has done for the past few years. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released data showing that this trend is largely driven by increases in deaths by suicide and drug overdose. These two areas have been key parts of our work over…

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November 2, 2018

Dear Daughter: Building a Healthier Future for You

I spent the last three months on maternity leave getting to know my daughter. She came into the world like most babies, unwillingly leaving behind a nicer, easier place for the cold and the bright of a hospital room. I can’t say that my first thoughts were of how the health policies we create now…

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October 1, 2018

Supporting People with Chronic Pain Through Collaborative Care

Since early this year, the Bree Collaborative has been looking at ways to best organize care to support people with chronic pain. One of the systems with the best evidence is through collaborative care. Collaborative care is based in primary care and uses a team-based care model with a care coordination or care management function,…

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September 1, 2018

Born in the USA: A hard look at how we care for moms and babies

Being born in the United States is risky – for both mom and baby. More than 50,000 mothers have life-threatening complications every year. Birth outcomes for both mom and baby depend on where you live but also on race. It should not be the case that black mothers are three to four times more likely…

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August 1, 2018

Taking Action to Address Increasing Suicide Rates in Washington State

Suicide rates have increased in almost all 50 states and in all regions of Washington State. The health care community in Washington State has been concerned about the too-high suicide rates for years. Suicide is a preventable outcome, and our community is working to address this public health imperative through our Suicide Care workgroup. The…

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July 1, 2018

Wear Sunscreen

Sun protection has always been big in my family. We tend to burn instead of tan and are prone to skin cancer. Knowing this about myself has made me more vigilant. This was my first lesson in the fallibility of the human body and in my taking charge of my own health. Summer is often…

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