Midwest the Model for Health Care? YES!

US Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius made a trip to Rochester Minnesota, along with Congressman Kind and Governor Doyle, to talk about how we can apply the lessons learned by Mayo and Gundersen Lutheran to help lower costs while raising the quality of health care.

Sebelius visited Gundersen Lutheran and Mayo in Rochester, Minn. She also was joined by Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle and U.S. Reps. Ron Kind of La Crosse and Tim Walz of Minnesota at a forum with 75 local seniors at the Southside Neighborhood Center in La Crosse.

Gundersen Lutheran provides some of the highest quality, most efficient and low-cost health care in the country, the secretary said, and she plans to use some of the best practices from Gundersen and Mayo.

“The secretary’s visit sends a message that we are players in helping her and America do health care better,” said Dr. Robert Nesse, Franciscan Skemp CEO and president, who was with Sebelius at Mayo and in La Crosse.

She said she was impressed with Gundersen Lutheran’s patient-centered programs, such as end-of-life care, wellness and prevention, coordinated care and integrated electronic medical record.

I’m glad to see the federal government taking this step and recognizing what is one of the most high quality and low cost health systems in the country.

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