Verizon commits to HHS healthcare quality initiative

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Verizon Communications Chairman and CEO Ivan Seidenberg has announced the company’s support of four goals proposed by Health and Human Services that aim to improve healthcare quality and reduce costs through increased use of technology and providing more information to consumers. HHS Secretary Michael Leavitt recently called for private employers to support four cornerstone goals aimed at improving the quality of care and lowering costs, including: adopting standards for connecting health information technology; adopting quality-of-care reporting; providing costs of health services in advance; and providing incentives for quality care at competitive prices.

"The secretary's efforts and the participation of the business community are essential to solving the health care crisis, because they bring together the purchasing power of the public and private sectors to move this important initiative forward," Seidenberg said. "These four goals are not a panacea. But they are necessary steps to help the health care industry catch up to the innovations in technology and competition that have empowered consumers and increased the efficacy, value and efficiency of products and services in so many other areas."

For the announcement, Verizon provided one example of how technology can help make the delivery of health care more efficient and cost-effective: the Children's National Medical Center in Washington which uses Verizon's fiber network to transmit electrocardiograms from anywhere in the United States to the homes of the center's neonatal cardiologists.