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Calendar for Safety

Safety topics from the National Safety Council, are organized by season. Check out Agricultural Safety during planting and harvest seasons, or the other categories: Healthy Living (includes Halloween safety), Environment, On the Road (including Cell phone safety, Distracted Driving), and School Bus Safety

CDC Injury Facts – CDC Injury Center

Traumatic brain injury/concussion (2.5 million TBI-related ER visits each year), prescription drug overdose (opioids killing 47,600 people in 2017), falls, mass casualties, alcohol-related injuries, distracted driving injuries, teen drivers and car accidents, fires and burn injuries, motor vehicle crashes, poisoning, suicide, and violence, and prevention opportunities and more

Consumer Guide to Prevention – USPSTF Recommendations Editor's Pick

Recommendations from the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) for more than 100 Screening tests, Preventive Medication, and Counseling activities. Individual Consumer Guides for all different types of cancer, obesity, high blood pressure, speech and language disorders, hearing loss, chronic kidney disease, depression, diabetes, abdominal aortic aneurysm, sexually transmitted disease, osteoporosis, and much more. Counseling for alcohol misuse, diet and physical activity. Updated 2019. the USPSTF is an independent, volunteer panel of national experts in prevention and evidence-based medicine. Updated 2019

Falls Can Kill Seniors – CDC facts

Falls caused about 3 million trips to the ER, and over 800,000 hospitalizations for older people. Head injury and hip fractures were the most common reasons for fall-related hospital stays. Find out steps you can take: home safety, exercise, eye exams, and medicine use. Unintentional fall death rates have been rising in the last 10 years (see graph)

Flu – Preventing Seasonal Flu (Influenza)

CDC’s guide for preventing the flu, including who should get the flu shot, and how vaccination is the single best way to prevent the flu

Healthy People 2020 – Goals

Healthy People 2020 is the US government’s set of national objectives to prevent disease and promote health. There are hundreds of objectives in 42 areas, including Cancer, Physical Activity, Diabetes, Nutrition and Weight, Tobacco Use, Substance Abuse, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Immunizations, Chronic Kidney Disease and more. New topics & goals for genomics, global health, dementia/alzheimer’s, adolescents, older adults, preparedness, sleep, healthcare-associated infections and others. Interesting objective is to reduce the number of measles cases from the baseline of 115 (2008) to 30 by 2020.  This year (as of May 3, 2019), the US has confirmed 764 cases.

Men: Checklist for Staying Healthy at Age 50+

Find out what steps are recommended to stay healthy at age 50 and older. Includes list of screening tests and preventive medicine for men. AHRQ at US Dept. of Health and Human Services March 2014 now archived

Prevention Makes Common "Cents"

Detailed report by US Department of Health and Human Services (September 2003) addressing the cost of disease and illness. Specific sections are included on Overweight and Obesity, Diabetes, Cardiovascular (Heart) Disease, Asthma, and Tobacco Use. Metabolic Syndrome also discussed

Prevention Priorities

Rankings of preventive services and scoring each for cost effectiveness. HealthPartners Institute, working with the National Commission on Prevention Priorities (NCPP), sponsors this information.

Suicide Prevention: Crisis – Call 1-800-273-8255

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be reached toll-free at 1-800-273-8255 (1-800-273-TALK). There are over 150 crisis centers across the country, and you will be routed to the closest possible crisis center in your area. Special services for Veterans, Native Americans, LGBTQ+ and others. Provided by the US Dept. of Health and Human Services

Women: Checklist for Staying Healthy at Age 50+

Find out what steps are recommended to stay healthy at age 50 and older. Includes list of screening tests and preventive medicine for women. AHRQ at US Dept. of Health and Human Services April 2014 now archived

Other Helpful Listings

California – 2018-19 HMO, PPO, & Medical Group Ratings Report Card Editor's Pick

Two Kaiser Permanente HMO Plans received the highest ratings. The lowest rating went to Aetna Health of California HMO. Compare 10 largest California HMO health insurance plans: Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross HMO, Blue Shield, Cigna, Health Net, Kaiser Permanente Northern and Southern CA regions, Sharp Health Plan, United Healthcare and Western Health Advantage. Compare 6 of the largest PPOs: Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross, Blue Shield, Cigna, Health Net Life Insurance Company, United Healthcare. Clear, simple star system (5 stars = excellent; 4 stars = very good; 3 stars = good, 2 stars = fair; 1 star = poor) used for overall rating. Actual performance scores are not given, but may be available through NCQA. Quality measures (based on HEDIS scores) for asthma, cancer screening, child health, chlamydia screening, diabetes, heart care, maternity care, behavioral and mental health, and other expected care. Member satisfaction stars also shown. Complaint rates reported for health plans in a separate report. Nearly 200 Medical Group ratings also provided by county for the larger groups of doctors. For example, nearly 60 different Kaiser Permanente medical groups are included; Sutter, Scripps, Sharp and many more.  Prepared by the California state Office of the Patient Advocate (OPA), published November 2018.

CDC Vaccine Contract Price List

If you’re interested in knowing the vaccine cost for pediatric or adult vaccines (contract prices to CDC and private sector cost per dose), the CDC website has the vaccine contract price list. Vaccine prices for influenza, DTaP, Hepatitis A and B, Hib, HPV, Meningococcal, MMR, Pneumococcal, Rotavirus, Tetanus and Diphtheria, Varicella, and Zoster. Shows manufacturers Sanofi Pasteur, GSK Glaxo Smith Kline, Merck, Pfizer, Grifols, Seqirus USA, Dynavax, AstraZeneca. The most expensive is HPV9 at $178.15 (CDC price), $227.93 for private sector. Updated September 1, 2019. Prices do not include doctor’s office visit cost

County Health Rankings 2019 – All States Editor's Pick

Compare your county health status to the rest of your state, on the latest results for smoking, obesity, alcohol use, preventable hospital stays; primary care, dentist and mental health provider rates, percent uninsured (as of 2016), alcohol impaired driving deaths, severe housing problems, social associations, and much more. Very interesting information on health behaviors and health outcomes. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Univ. of WI Population Health Institute

Florida Health Insurance Plans – Quality Ratings & Satisfaction Editor's Pick

Find Member Satisfaction and quality ratings for cancer screening, diabetes, prenatal care, well child care, children’s dental care, high blood pressure for HMOs, Medicare HMOs and Medicaid. Aetna, AvMed, Better Health, Capital, CIGNA, Clear Health Alliance, Community, Coventry, Florida Health Care, Freedom Health, Health First, Health Options, Humana, Magellan, Molina, Neighborhood, Positive, Prestige, Simply, Staywell, Sunshine, United Healthcare, Children’s Medical Services and others. Data reflect services received in 2017. Search by county. Additional member satisfaction for PPOs including Capital Health (highest member satisfaction), Florida Blue, Golden Rule (lowest member satisfaction), Aetna, Cigna, Humana, United. Easy to read.

Georgia Health Insurance Plan Ratings and Comparisons 2018

Scroll to the bottom to find External Quality Review Organization (EQRO) which lets consumers read about performance of health plans in GA.  Very difficult to navigate. Compare quality ratings and member satisfaction scores for Medicaid, Amerigroup Community Care, Peach State Health Plan, WellCare of Georgia and The Georgia Families Amerigroup 360. Covers access to care, dental visits, opioids at high dosage, ER visits, diabetes care, prenatal care, 7-day followup after mental health admission, member opinions and more using 2016-2017 scores. Other reports are at this website that may have more information. Released in 2018 by Georgia Dept. of Community Health at dch.georgia.gov

Maine Doctor and Medical Group Ratings, 2015

Maine Patient Experience Matters from the Maine Quality Forum coalition. Compare health center, doctor & clinic ratings (primary care, specialists and pediatrics) for patient satisfaction, getting timely appointments and communication. Percent positive understates what is shown. In the fine print, it says these are Top Box scores, which means the percent of people who gave the highest possible ratings of 9 or 10. Scores from Aug. 2014 to Feb. 2015, which is the most recent available. Partners include Maine Health Management Coalition, DHSS, Maine Quality Counts, & Muskie School of Public Service

Maryland HMO & Health Insurance Plan Ratings 2017

Compare Aetna, CareFirst BlueChoice, CFMI & GHMSI; Cigna, Kaiser Permanente, KPIC, MAMSI, MD-IPA, Optimum Choice and United Healthcare on member satisfaction (CAHPS), getting appointments, flu shots, and many clinical measures of care such as Diabetes, breast cancer screening, behavioral health, well child care. Check both Consumer Ratings & Clinical Ratings. Other Medicaid HealthChoice plans (Amerigroup, JAI, Maryland Physicians Care, Medstar, Priority Partners, University of MD Health Partners) are listed separately. 2017 Performance Report by Maryland Health Care Commission uses 2016 data

Memory Screening: Who Participates in Screening Events and Why (pdf)

Memory Screening survey by MetLife for institutions and people concerned about Alzheimer’s disease. No outcomes or referral rates appear to be included in the study, but report describes who attends these screenings and how they learn about the screenings. Report dated October 2006

Minnesota, ND, SD, WI – Physician Clinic Ratings – HealthScores Editor's Pick

Compare side-by-side (5 measures at a time) over 500 participating medical groups, hundreds of clinic locations and urgent care centers in Minnesota, Fargo, Grand Forks, Sioux Falls, and some Wisconsin communities for diabetes, knee replacement, vascular care, mental health (depression), cancer screening, controlling high blood pressure, heart (coronary artery) disease, asthma, vaccinations, appropriate care for children with colds and sore throats and more. Some clinics also have patient satisfaction scores. Medical groups include Allina, Altru, Apple Valley, Aspen, Avera, Brainerd, Children’s Physician Network, Dakota Clinic, Edina, Fairview, Fergus, Grand Itasca, Gundersen, HealthEast, HealthPartners, Lakewood, Mankato, Mayo Clinic, North Memorial, Northfield, Olmsted, Park Nicollet, Ridgeview, Sanford, St. Cloud CentraCare, St. Luke’s, St. Mary’s Duluth Clinic (Essentia), Stillwater, United, University of Minnesota, Winona Health Services, and more; OB-GYN clinics and Orthopedic clinics. Report by MN Community Measurement (founded by the MN Medical Association and seven non-profit health insurance plans). Annual data, but report doesn’t specify what year (unclear why that is a secret).  Otherwise, the interactive format is easy-to-use.

MN Physician fees, office visit cost, colonoscopy, more

Find how much physicians charge for over 100 professional services in Minnesota, ND, SD, WI through Minnesota HealthScores’ Cost Report feature. Compare prices over 150 participating medical groups, and hundreds of clinic locations in Minnesota, and some border communities, for doctor office visits, lab tests, colonoscopy, endoscopy, minor office surgical procedures such as ear wax or wart removal; immunization, psychotherapy. Obstetric services, including inpatient delivery. Medical groups include Allina, Altru, Apple Valley, Aspen, Avera, Brainerd, Children’s Physician Network, Dakota Clinic, Edina, Fairview, Fergus, Grand Itasca, Gundersen, HealthEast, HealthPartners, Lakewood, Mankato, Mayo Clinic, MeritCare, Innovis, North Memorial, Northstar, Olmsted, Osceola, Park Nicollet, Regina, Ridgeview, Sanford, St. Cloud CentraCare, St. Luke’s, St. Mary’s Duluth Clinic, Stillwater, United, University of Minnesota, Winona Clinic, and more; OB-GYN clinics, Report by MN Community Measurement. Does NOT include facility charges which are in the thousands for colonoscopy or childbirth. Interactive easy-to-use format. Costs shown are claims through BCBS, Health Partners, Medica, and Preferred One in 2017. Unclear if it’s price before or after discounts

New Jersey 2016 HMO Performance Report – Compare plans

Compare six health insurance companies (HMO/POS and PPO/EPO) from Aetna, AmeriHealth, CIGNA, Horizon, Oxford and United, on quality ratings related to asthma, COPD, cancer screening, heart care, hypertension, diabetes, new moms, immunizations, mental health; frequency of imaging tests for lower back pain, cardiac cath and tonsillectomies; well child care, more. Easy to read; fast response. Pub. by NJ Dept. of Banking and Insurance, May 2017

Prescription Drug Abuse – Kids Editor's Pick

Excellent videos and practical advice for parents who want to prevent problems of kids – teenagers and children – misusing prescription drugs. A growing problem addressed by the nonprofit organization Partnership for Drug-Free Kids

Rhode Island – Top Ratings for Health Insurance Plans (NCQA)

Tufts Associated HMO plan earned the top 5.0 rating from NCQA. Based on Quality, Member Satisfaction and accreditation results. 2017-2018 Ratings

Texas – Guide to Texas HMO Quality 2017 (OPIC)

Lengthy (270 pages) but valuable report showing detailed clinical quality comparisons between HMO health insurance plans for indicators such as asthma, childhood immunizations, cancer screening, heart care, high blood pressure, diabetes care, prenatal care, mental health care, flu shots, antibiotic utilization rates, rates of physician board certification, and more. Compare HMOs Aetna, Allegian, Cigna, Community First, Community Health Choice, FIRSTCARE, HMO Blue Texas, Humana, Molina, Scott and White, Superior and United Healthcare of Texas. Pub. by TX Office of Public Insurance Council

Utah HMO and PPO Health Insurance Plan 2018 Ratings

Compare Utah HMOs and PPOs – health insurance plans Aetna, Altius, Cigna, Deseret, Educators Mutual EMI, Humana, PEHP, Regence Blue Cross Blue Shield, SelectHealth, United Health Care, and Medicaid plans (Health Choice, Healthy U, Molina, SelectHealth CHIP) on member satisfaction, antidepressant medications, back pain, cancer screening, and high blood pressure; diabetes, prenatal & maternity, preventive care, well-child visits & immunizations, and more. Shows actual performance rates. 2018 Performance Report published by utah.gov uses 2017 data

Virginia – Compare HMOs (Quality and Satisfaction) Editor's Pick

Easy to use tool to compare insurance plan ratings: Aetna, CareFirst BlueChoice, HealthKeepers (Peninsula & Priority), Innovation Health Plan, Kaiser Mid-Atlantic, Optima, Optimum Choice, United Healthcare MidAtlantic and River Valley. Choose measures for access, asthma, ADHD, heart, diabetes, arthritis, immunizations, medications, mental health care (best plan for 7-day follow-up is Kaiser at 70%, compared to HealthKeepers e.g. at just 47%), preventive care, spirometry for COPD, prenatal, maternity and newborn care; weight assessment, well child visits and childhood illnesses, member satisfaction for 2016 and more. Also includes Board certification rates for some types of physicians, number of enrollees, and financial data. Of note, the largest plan HealthKeepers, was also the lowest rated in member satisfaction.

Wisconsin Collaborative (WCHQ) – Compare Physician Group Ratings Editor's Pick

Compare Wisconsin physician clinics on 30 measures related to satisfaction with getting a timely doctor’s appointment, patient recommendations on clinics; scores for diabetes, heart care, high blood pressure, HPV vaccine, smoking & osteoporosis screening, pneumonia shot, screening for Breast Cancer, Cervical Cancer & Colorectal Cancer; Ischemic Vascular Disease care, BMI, Depression screening, well child visits and more. Includes Affinity, Aspirus, Aurora, Bellin, Ascension Columbia St. Mary’s and Wheaton, Associated Physicians, SSM Dean, Mayo Clinic Eau Claire and Franciscan La Crosse, Fort Healthcare, Froedert, Gundersen Clinic, Marshfield Clinic, Mercy, Meriter Unity Point, Monroe, Prairie Clinic, Prevea, Primary Care Associates Appleton, ProHealth, Reedsburg, ThedaCare, UW Health, Wildwood and others. Some medical groups report scores by individual clinic location. The Sort-by-Rank option helps you see better performers on the top of your list for some items. Easy to read reports by WI Collaborative for Healthcare Quality (WCHQ); 2017 and 2018 data

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