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Boston doctors launch new journal

A pair of Boston physicians with experience working on national health policy are launching a new journal focused on changes in the health care system, including new payment methods. Drs. Sachin H. Jain and Amol Navathe expect the first issue of Health Care: The Journal of Delivery Science and Innovation to be published next summer.

Jain and Navathe began planning the journal, which will be published by Elsevier, while in D.C. together last year. Jain, who now sees patients at VA Boston and holds posts at Harvard Medical School and Merck & Co., was an advisor to Dr. Donald Berwick, then administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Navathe was a medical officer in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. He is a physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and has appointments at Harvard Medical School and The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

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“We were struck by the fact that there were sort of gaps in the research that’s being produced,” Jain said. “There’s so much change in the world in health care right now, but there aren’t a lot of venues to publish about that change.”

Another gap they noticed was between researchers and policymakers, he said. The journal’s leaders plan to coach researchers about how to get their work into policymakers hands and will host forums to that end.

Jain said the journal will emphasize case studies as a means of exploring how people are changing the way health care works. And the group is looking for research from relative newcomers to publishing, including people who might lack the background or academic connections to get their work into top journals.

Health Affairs has been publishing about health policy for two decades, and the New England Journal of Medicine includes work about health care delivery. But, Jain said, “there’s a totally new health care context that’s developing. We need more than just one or two great journals in this space.”

The journal’s board of directors includes several health policy experts from Massachusetts. Among them are Institute for Healthcare Improvement President Maureen Bisognano, Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates Vice President for Clinician Development Dr. Les Schwab, and Dr. David Blumenthal, the chief health information and innovation officer at Partners Healthcare who will become president of the Commonwealth Fund starting in January.

Chelsea Conaboy can be reached at cconaboy@boston.com. Follow her on Twitter @cconaboy.
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