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Tracy Carver, MPA, has worked with HealthInsight Oregon (formerly Acumentra Health) since 2011. Currently, she manages the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Everyone with Diabetes Counts initiative and the Integrating Evidence-based Self-Management Education into Patient Care Special Innovation Project in Oregon. She also manages HealthInsight Oregon’s integrated physician office team and is a leader for companywide physician office integration design and operations. Previously, Tracy served as a quality improvement specialist focused on medication safety initiatives. Before joining HealthInsight, Tracy worked for the Oregon Health Authority coordinating initiatives focused on community-based approaches to self-management, health literacy, disparities and reducing the burden of chronic disease. She has more than nine years of experience leading innovative quality improvement and population health initiatives. She holds a Master of Public Administration degree from Portland State University.

Changing the Conversation from Health Care to Health

Senior man sitting with his daughter and grandson

I was excited to hear Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), speak at this year's Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Quality Conference about the importance of moving "upstream" and strengthening the relationship between community-based prevention services and health care. This is a topic near and dear to my heart, as I started my career working in public health to help communities improve the systems that support community health and prevention. Now that I work in health care quality improvement, I see daily the health care community's challenges and opportunities in not only providing good health care, but helping people achieve health.

Most of us who work in health have learned that there are significant limitations to what the health care system can achieve alone. Our systems of care must change to meet the growing burden of chronic disease.

Cardiovascular diseases, pre-diabetes and diabetes are at a record high. According to the CDC, cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death in the United States. Nearly one in 10 Americans has diabetes, and without intervention, this number will likely continue to grow. More than one-third of American adults have pre-diabetes, an estimated nine out of 10 of don't know they have it. The good news is many risk factors for these conditions can be prevented or managed with lifestyle changes between visits to the doctor. Success, in many cases, depends as much on lifestyle as it does on quality care.

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