EvergreenHealth in Kirkland selected for Harvard project

EvergreenHealth - Contributed art
— image credit: Contributed art

EvergreenHealth has been selected as one of just 32 national and international health care organizations to participate during the next 12 months in the Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s Joint Replacement Learning Community, supported by Harvard Business School faculty.

The Joint Replacement Learning Community brings together a small number of highly visible provider organizations to measure and improve costs and outcomes for knee and hip replacements with the aim of ensuring high-value care, according to the institute.

“We are honored that EvergreenHealth is participating in this important work," said Robert Malte, EvergreenHealth CEO. "It will help further the high-quality care our orthopedic surgeons already provide. We know that major joint replacement is the most common condition among the Medicare population. Programs like this one, to improve both cost and quality for joint replacement, will benefit a large number of our patients and all of us who have a stake in lowering medical costs while ensuring the absolute best in safety, quality and service."

During the the next year, faculty from the Harvard Business School will partner with the Joint Replacement Learning Community to share best practices and consider ways to maximize quality and costs using the school's Time-Driven, Activity-Based Costing approach. Institute faculty will consult with all of the organizations as they work together on continuous improvement, rapid-cycle testing and outcomes measurement.

While the work will focus on hip and knee replacement, the methodologies can be broadly applied to other procedures and serve as a precursor for bundled payments, according to the institute.

The EvergreenHealth team participating in the initiative includes:  Kirk Hanson, Project Leader; Dr. M. Sean Kincaid, Medical Director EvergreenHealth Surgical Services; Dr. Ray Baker, Medical Director of EvergreenHealth’s Spine and Musculoskeletal Services; David Humes, Financial Analyst, and Lynn LaBoda, Manager of Decision Support, from the Finance Department; and Dr. Mark Newman, Medical Director Quality, and Wendy Schrempp, Program Manager, from the Quality Department.

The EvergreenHealth orthopedic surgeons participating include Jeff Stickney, MD; Craig McAllister, MD; Bruce Rolfe, MD; Robin Fuchs, MD; and David Badger, MD.

More information about the Joint Replacement Learning Community and a complete list of participants is available at


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