The North Dakota Experience: Achieving High-Performance Health Care Through Rural Innovation and Cooperation

Source: Douglas McCarthy, Rachel Nuzum, and Stephanie Mika, Commonwealth Fund, Vol. 93, May 15, 2008

From the summary:
Resource constraints and the desire to preserve the local economy have made necessity the mother of invention in North Dakota, driving health care providers and policymakers to try new approaches to care and to institute better practices relatively quickly. Collaboration to support primary care and the concept of a medical home, organization of care through cooperative networks of providers, and innovative use of technology to meet patient needs and hold down costs are examples of how North Dakota is able to provide its citizens with accessible, quality, and efficient health care despite the challenges of a rural setting. Rural communities have a unique context of community trust and interdependence, a social capital that allows them to innovate in meeting patients’ needs. A strong sense of mission, vigilance to process and outcomes, and enhanced communication and collaboration among health care providers are key to improvements made in North Dakota health care.
See also:
Fund Report

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