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Costs are a major concern for patients, clinicians, providers, commissioners and governments (Akerman 2015). Claims have been made that the Learning Healthcare System can help to solve the cost crisis in healthcare (Institute of Medicine 2010). At the same time, the considerable costs of implementing, maintaining and administering the required infrastructure have often been overlooked (O’Hanlon 2015).

Many of the claimed savings have face validity. For example, the potential for earlier diagnosis, more personalised treatment regimes, fewer medical errors and cheaper research methodologies would seem to suggest significant potential for direct and indirect savings. However, there has been little robust economic evaluation of the elements of Learning Healthcare Systems that already exist and little economic appraisal of the elements that have been proposed (Simpson 2015).

There will be some scepticism about potential savings following the failure, so far, to realise the efficiency gains that had been hoped for from EHRs (Simpson 2015). Economic evaluation and appraisal work is urgently required to complete the case for or against the development of the various components of the Learning Healthcare System.


Biobanks and Electronic Medical Records: Enabling Cost-Effective Research

By E. Bowton, J. R. Field, S. Wang, J. S. Schildcrout, S. L. Van Driest, J. T. Delaney, J. Cowan, ...
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Dr Shaun O’Hanlon Interview

By Dr Fergus Fairmichael. Background Dr O’Hanlon is EMIS Group's Chief Medical Officer. He started with EMIS in 2006 as ...
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Dr Lisa Simpson Interview

By Dr Tom Foley, Dr Fergus Fairmichael. Background Dr. Simpson is the President and Chief Executive officer of AcademyHealth. Before ...
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Dr Christina Åkerman Interview

By Dr Tom Foley. Background Dr Christina R. Åkerman is President of ICHOM. Between 2008 and 2014, she served as ...
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Care Cost Inflation

By RAND Corporation. Despite recent signs that efforts to slow the growth of U.S. health care costs are working, health ...
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Conceptualising and creating a global learning health system

By Charles Friedman, Michael Rigby. Abstract In any country the health sector is important in terms of human wellbeing and ...
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Value in Health Care: Accounting for Cost, Quality, Safety, Outcomes, and Innovation: Workshop Summary

By Institure of Medicine. Abstract The United States has the highest per capita spending on health care of any industrialized ...
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A Rapid-Learning Health System

By Lynn M. Etheredge. Abstract Private- and public-sector initiatives, using electronic health record (EHR) databases from millions of people, could ...
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