Straight Talk - "The Road to Continued Success"

July 5, 2012

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Now that the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the Affordable Care Act, we can begin to better define the requisites that will lead to the continued success of NCH as a thriving healthcare system.

Those requisites were spelled out at a meeting I attended, sponsored by Truven (formerly known as Thomson Reuters Healthcare). Former Utah Governor and Secretary of Health and Human Services Michael Leavitt offered his perspective on embracing seven core characteristics that will determine the best healthcare systems five years out.

  1. Capacity to improve the health of individuals and whole populations; not just repair shop healthcare. Systems must focus on wellness, prevention, instilling good habits in young people, addressing end of life care, and other community health-promoting activities.
  2. Brand name recognition.
  3. Access to capital.
  4. Aggregating lives, relating to taking into consideration the needs of entire populations to improve health and wellness.
  5. Managing risk, especially in understanding that 5% of the population uses 50% of the healthcare so we must provide value to these individuals, while providing for others in need.
  6. Sufficient footprint in the community.
  7. Collaborative IQ—embracing relationships with large multispecialty clinics and insurance companies—to become “strategic aggregators.”

Studer Group Medical Director Dr. Stephen C. Beeson added another important variable—“having a team of physicians aligned with the organizational efforts to execute outcomes in quality, safety, cost-effectiveness, patient experience, and evidence-based care.”

All of this has great relevance to NCH. For 12 years, we have been on a good journey with more than 600 physicians, 4,000 colleagues, and 1,200 volunteers to serve our community. We have broadened the perspective and reach of our two-hospital, 715-bed system, improving quality, and thus adding value.

Integral to this journey is adding new talent and expertise. We have done this again most recently with the addition of John McGirl as Chief Human Resources Officer.

John is an expert in employee engagement in highly customer-focused service industries. Formerly, John served with Royal Caribbean International as Vice President of Human Resources, with more than 40,000 international employees. As healthcare practitioners, we are service workers engaged in a noble practice. John’s perspective from another industry will help us attain one of our three primary goals—enhancing the patient experience. (Our other two goals are improving our community’s health and adding “value,” defined as quality divided by cost.) John will be the catalyst in improving patient and family satisfaction and, by extension, the satisfaction and engagement of us all.

Please welcome John as we all work together to assure the continued success of NCH and with it, the long-term success and good health of our community.

Allen S. Weiss, M.D., President and CEO

You may contact Dr. Allen Weiss
and The NCH Healthcare System
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