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Medical News & Perspectives
February 21, 2001

Kenneth W. Kizer, MD, MPH: Health Care Quality Evangelist

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JAMA. 2001;285(7):869-871. doi:10.1001/jama.285.7.869

Washington—As president and chief executive officer of the 18-month-old National Quality Forum (NQF), Kenneth W. Kizer, MD, MPH, confronts a huge challenge: improving the quality of health care in the United States.

Formed in response to 1998 recommendations from a commission appointed by President Clinton, the NQF seeks to better health care from within, via consensus building, rather than from without, via regulation. With 110 member organizations after the first year of operation (and a goal of adding 200 more), the NQF brings government, health care practitioners, purchasers, and consumer groups to the same table to tackle a daunting array of issues. First up: projects aimed at reducing medical errors, including a compendium of evidence-based "safe practices" and a list of health care no-nos Kizer calls "never events."

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