Health Affairs: As the former CEO of Denver Health, a large safety-net health care system in Colorado, where I also served as chief medical officer for most of my twenty-year tenure as CEO, I was a vigorous proponent of using the best available data to create standards of care. I embraced this as an essential pathway to reduce care variation and improve quality. Since a majority of our patients were members of minority communities, creating evidence-based standard care pathways for every person also seemed a way to reduce disparity.
Clearly, I was a believer in a standardized approach to care. But when my ninety-four-year-old mother sustained a fall, my strong commitment to standards waned.
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