Remaking American Medicine

The Medical Center at Augusta University served as a national model for Patient and Family-Centered Care  as seen on the PBS series, Remaking American Medicine. This four-part series explored the health care quality crisis in the United States, and the innovative solutions being undertaken by providers, patients and families to transform care. The four programs aired on PBS in October 2006.

The final program, “Hand in Hand,” singled out Augusta University as a nationally recognized organization where partnership among patients, their families and health care providers is our guiding vision.

The series consisted of:

Program One - Silent Killer
Every year at least 98,000 Americans die -- and countless more are injured -- as a result of medical errors.  This program begins by profiling the efforts of Sorrel King, whose 18-month-old daughter Josie was killed at one of the most respected hospitals in the world, Johns Hopkins.  King has gone from grieving victim to engaged activist, partnering with Johns Hopkins to make safety a top priority at the institution.  Now she has joined forces with Dr. Donald Berwick, a nationally recognized patient safety advocate, to save 100,000 lives in American hospitals.

Program Two - First Do No Harm
This program focuses on the impact of medical errors in two hospitals and follows the efforts of physicians who are challenging their colleagues to live up to their oath to First Do No Harm.  In Pittsburgh, Chief of Medicine Dr. Richard Shannon is confronting an epidemic of hospital-acquired infections that are shattering the lives of their victims.  Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey is engaged in an effort to totally transform the way the institution delivers care.  The goal is to ensure that the people trusted to provide safe and effective medical treatment do not harm patients.

Program Three - The Stealth Epidemic
Chronic diseases like diabetes and congestive heart failure affect nearly 100 million Americans, and treatment of these illnesses consumes nearly 70 percent of all health care resources. Yet doctors are often unable to prevent needless suffering or even death, and these failures are threatening the viability of our entire health care system. This program looks at groundbreaking efforts in two very different communities -- Los Angeles, Calif. and Whatcom County in the state of Washington -- that are fundamentally transforming the physician-patient relationship ... and offers a glimmer of hope for patients across the country that are struggling with their chronic conditions.

Program Four - Hand in Hand
As medicine continues to become more and more technologically sophisticated and the systems that deliver medical care become more complex, the relationship between providers, patients and families is more important than ever. This final program tells the story of patients and families who have formed a unique bond at Medical Center at Augusta University to transform the institution into a nationally recognized facility where partnership is a guiding vision to the care it delivers.

For more information on “Remaking American Medicine”