$4.2 Million Grant Program to Support Health Care Organization Implementation of Choosing Wisely® Recommendations

    • January 8, 2015
Woman getting a dental x-ray by a female technician.

Philadelphia, Pa.—The ABIM Foundation has received a $4.2 million grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) to continue advancing its Choosing Wisely campaign, which focuses on reducing the use of unnecessary tests and treatments in U.S. health care. The funding will expand the campaign to engage health systems, hospitals and medical groups to work with regional health organizations and physician-led groups.

Launched in April 2012, Choosing Wisely encourages physicians and patients to discuss which medical tests and procedures may be unnecessary for their condition, and in some instances, can cause harm. Since then, more than 60 medical specialty societies have created lists of tests or procedures they say are overused or inappropriate in their specialty, and that clinicians and patients should discuss.

Choosing Wisely showcases physician leadership in addressing overuse and waste and challenges the health care community to make greater progress embedding the Choosing Wisely recommendations into everyday practice,” said Richard Baron, MD, president and CEO of the ABIM Foundation. “With this new support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, we intend to expand the program by facilitating partnerships among physician organizations, multi-stakeholder groups and delivery systems to systematically work together to reduce wasteful care.”

Seven grantees will be chosen to work for nearly three years to focus on at least three areas of waste or overuse cited by specialty societies in the Choosing Wisely lists. All grantees will focus on reducing the use of antibiotics for viral infections and will select at least two additional tests or treatments from more than 300 Choosing Wisely recommendations already identified.

Grantee applications are due by March 20, 2015.

“In order to achieve a national Culture of Health, it is important that we ensure physicians and patients have conversations about what tests and procedures are truly needed and address the challenge of overuse within our health care system,” said Susan Mende, BSN, MPH, senior program officer at RWJF. “Choosing Wisely has dramatically raised awareness of this issue, but we must turn awareness into action.”

The ABIM Foundation will also create a learning network to unite grantees from this and other Choosing Wisely programs, along with stakeholders from across the health care system that are working toward the campaign’s goals of reducing overuse and waste. The learning network will allow past and current grantees to learn from one another and enhance effectiveness. 

In addition to the work of the grantees, the new funding from RWJF will support Consumer Reports and its role in leading patient education and outreach for Choosing Wisely.

Today’s announcement marks the second grant from RWJF to the ABIM Foundation to advance the Choosing Wisely campaign. Since April 2013, 21 projects led by state medical societies, specialty societies and regional health collaboratives have helped educate physicians about the recommendations and build skills to have conversations with patients about the care they need.

 

About the ABIM Foundation

The mission of the ABIM Foundation is to advance medical professionalism to improve the health care system. We achieve this by collaborating with physicians and physician leaders, medical trainees, health care delivery systems, payers, policy makers, consumer organizations and patients to foster a shared understanding of professionalism and how they can adopt the tenets of professionalism in practice. To learn more about the ABIM Foundation, visit www.abimfoundation.org, read the ABIM Foundation blog blog.abimfoundation.org or connect with the ABIM Foundation on Facebook and Twitter.

 

About Choosing Wisely®

First announced in December 2011, Choosing Wisely® is part of a multi-year effort led by the ABIM Foundation to support and engage physicians in being better stewards of finite health care resources. Participating specialty societies are working with the ABIM Foundation and Consumer Reports to share the lists widely with their members and convene discussions about the physician’s role in helping patients make wise choices. Learn more at ChoosingWisely.org.

 

About the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

For more than 40 years the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has worked to improve health and health care. We are striving to build a national Culture of Health that will enable all to live longer, healthier lives now and for generations to come. For more information, visit www.rwjf.org. Follow the Foundation on Twitter at www.rwjf.org/twitter or on Facebook at www.rwjf.org/facebook.

Media Contacts

Melissa Blair

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (609) 627-5937

Additional Media Contact: John Held

ABIM Foundation (215) 446-3572

Culture of Health blog

Intensifying the Spotlight On Health Care of Dubious Value

RWJF Senior Health Policy Adviser Susan Dentzer describes Choosing Wisely as a program that shifts the spotlight onto many of the tests and treatments that both providers and patients should question, if not abandon completely.

Read the blog post