Posts filed under ‘About ICSI’

Social Determinants Helped Determine My Health in 2013

The fifth annual County Health Rankings, prepared by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, recently came out. Minnesota fared quite well nationally. But I was more interested in my county–Washington. We ranked #8, which was near the top among all Minnesota counties.
The report was more relevant to me this year because the Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement has been focusing on both health care and health improvement. So I was aware that the University of Wisconsin work estimates that “health care” accounts for only about 20 percent of our “health” and longevity.

Continue Reading March 28, 2014 at 12:27 pm

There’s Still Time to Join ShareEBM Research Grant

MC_stack_4cThe goal of this project is to promote evidence-based patient-centered care in the primary care setting. We have developed a set of tools, including decision aids, to facilitate a conversation between the patient and clinician that incorporates the best research evidence and the patient’s preferences and values. We have also developed a ShareEBM implementation toolkit.

Our study will have two arms; one arm in which decision aids are passively disseminated and one strategically implemented with the study team assisting the adoption (ShareEBM Plus). Participating practices in both arms will have full access in perpetuity to the decision aids most pertinent to the primary care of patients with diabetes and concomitant chronic conditions (hypertension, depression, statin use, aspirin use, osteoporosis). Learn more about participation requirements and join us today!

December 16, 2013 at 12:27 pm

ICSI Receives RWJF Award to Promote Integration of Health Care and Public Resources

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) has awarded ICSI $150,000 to help promote greater integration of health care systems with public health and other community resources for health improvement. As part of the grant, over the next 18 months ICSI will develop multiple papers, two videos and an assessment tool that support health care system/public health integration. ICSI will also create an advisory committee to provide input and direction for this work.

Learn more about ICSI’s work to build sustainable, healthier communities.

October 10, 2013 at 1:05 pm

Gary Oftedahl:Thriving, not just surviving, a time for sharing and learning

Slightly over a year ago, I referenced the sense of “drinking from the fire hydrant” in discussing the challenge of incorporating all the information flooding our senses as we work on transforming health care. ( At the heart of this was an invitation to attend the annual ICSI/IHI Colloquium, as an opportunity to hear from many of those involved in the ongoing efforts. Over 500 of our friends and colleagues–an attendance record–took advantage of that event, which was a great success.

Continue Reading March 16, 2011 at 1:55 pm

Gary Oftedahl: The Challenge of Being a Catalyst

Admit it, we all like to be recognized for a job well done. Whether being sited at a local meeting, seeing our name linked to a successful outcome, or being published in a peer-reviewed journal, those of us in health care have many of the same human needs as demonstrated by any others in our society. We all like to be associated with a “winner” and, when possible, have others thank us personally for our hard work and creativity. That’s why it’s often times really, really hard to be a catalyst, but also sometimes really, really important.

Continue Reading December 9, 2010 at 5:27 pm

Jim Trevis: Are You Still Following Your Medical Dreams?

I’ve been feeling exceptionally good recently. Part is due to my son being selected as one of 50 college students to get a scholarship to the Telluride Film Festival. My daughter Laura, the world changer, spent four months in her beloved Guatemala. My wife, who thinks our yard is a northern Tara, will soon have pictures of her perennial gardens in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. And at an advanced age (call me Grandpa Moses of the literary field), I’m self-publishing my first novel and so far four people want to buy a copy.

Continue Reading September 9, 2010 at 4:54 pm

Gary Oftedahl: Who is that person?

Have you ever looked in the mirror, and been forced to do a harsh reality check? Who is that person, what happened to the young vibrant person who I know resides in my memory? Is that really the way others see me? It’s a humbling experience, which is why I’ve migrated away from spending too much time in front of such an apparatus.

Continue Reading August 19, 2010 at 11:43 am

Gary Oftedahl: Getting our ACT Together

“It’s all about the culture.” How many times have we heard that statement when trying to address the changes necessary in health care? In fact, isn’t it likely that irrespective of the arena, a disconnect between strategy and culture is a recipe for failure, and often disaster. To paraphrase many who work in this area, “culture eats strategy for lunch everyday.” Yet over my career in health care, and more specifically in the area of quality improvement, we have continued to attempt to implement new programs, new strategies, new approaches, only to see them disappear into the abyss of “failed opportunities” and lamented the lack of a culture that supports the activities.

Continue Reading July 29, 2010 at 12:09 pm

Gary Oftedahl: Wish you were (had been) here…

My esteemed colleague and leader of ICSI, Kent Bottles (@KentBottles), has highlighted the keynotes from the recent ICSI Colloquium. (

It was my ninth Colloquium as an ICSI staff member, and in my mind the most memorable—for many reasons. The only missing element was…….or at least some of you. The energy, the passion, the excitement, the conversations reverberated through the halls, going on long after the sessions ended.

Continue Reading May 12, 2010 at 8:16 am 2 comments

Kent Bottles: We Need Both Evidence-based Medicine and Patient-based Medicine

Sometimes I feel as though I am trapped between two worlds that should know each other better and that definitely need each other. And yet, these two worlds seem to be made up of good people who mean well, but who also talk past each other. They really do not understand each other at all.

Continue Reading March 15, 2010 at 11:36 am 2 comments

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