Magazine article The Nation's Health

Kizer to Be Presented with APHA's 2008 Award for Excellence

Magazine article The Nation's Health

Kizer to Be Presented with APHA's 2008 Award for Excellence

Article excerpt

Kenneth W. Kizer, MD, MPH, will receive the 2008 APHA Award for Excellence for his distinguished achievements in transforming the operation and quality of the U.S. Veterans Affairs Health Care System.

Kizer, who was VA undersecretary for health and chief executive officer for the Veterans Health Administration from 1994-1999, is now chair of Medsphere Systems Corporation in Aliso Viejo, Calif. He is credited with reorganization of the VA health care system, decentralizing operational decisionmaking and implementing equitable resource allocation, universal primary care, performance measurement, a pharmacy benefit program and a computerized patient record system, among other accomplishments.

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"Dr. Kizer transformed the VA health care system from a hospital-focused, specialty-based care to a patient-centered primary care through a series of operational as well as quality improvement measures," wrote APHA member Linda W. Tsan, MD, MS, MM, co-chair of the APHA Medical Care Section's Veteran's Health Committee, in a letter nominating Kizer for the Award for Excellence.

After working at VA, Kizer continued his efforts to improve the quality of the nation's health care, serving as president and chief executive officer of the National Quality Forum in Washington, D.C., from 1999-2005. While there, he developed a unique public-private partnership of more than 300 organizations representing all segments of the health care industry to bring consensus on standards for measuring and reporting health care quality. …

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