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Fisher named director of TDI

Elliott Fisher is working to apply research he and others at TDI have conducted to improve the delivery of care. "It is an important moment in health care," he says.

Elliott Fisher, whose name is familiar both to Dartmouth and to health-care policymakers across the country, has been appointed director of the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice (TDI). Fisher currently serves as director for population health at TDI and as the James W. Squires Professor of Medicine and Community and Family Medicine at Geisel.

Dean Chip Souba described Fisher as one of the nation's top thinkers in health policy and the science of health-care delivery. "Under Dr. Fisher's leadership, the faculty will continue to tackle the most important and vexing social problems confronting developed and developing countries," Souba said.

Fisher has accumulated a long list of accomplishments during his career, including leading groundbreaking studies showing that higher health-care spending does not necessarily lead to better health outcomes or better care. This research, along with other studies by Fisher and his colleagues at TDI, challenged—and eventually changed—conventional wisdom about health-care spending. Fisher has also served as co-director of the Dartmouth Atlas of Health Care, which has disseminated research carried out at TDI through the publication of reports on variations in health-care delivery across the country.

In recent years, Fisher has applied new knowledge about health care to policy. As one example, he helped create the concept of the accountable care organization (ACO), a new model for the delivery and payment of health-care that moves away from the fee-for-service model long prevalent in the U.S.

Fisher is looking forward to the challenge of helping to improve the nation's health-care system. "It is an important moment in health-care," he said. "Rising health-care costs are now recognized as the major threat not only to federal, state and local budgets, but also to personal incomes. We know that much of that spending is wasted on high administrative costs, exorbitant prices, and avoidable discretionary services. Emerging models of payment and care delivery offer the promise of both better care and lower costs."


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