The Cult of Healthcare - A Warning to New Arrivals

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Student / New to Profession

Ronald McDade
Performance Improvement
MedStar Health

This session provides a light-hearted introduction to the culture of healthcare performance improvement. Using models of leadership, organizational structure and process management, attendees will learn how healthcare varies from other service and industrial organizations and theory, and will discuss tips for successfully implementing improvement in healthcare.

Many education programs in performance improvement and change management focus on industrial models for implementing change. As such, their lessons are based on the for-profit industrial and service sectors. In those industries, performance management and improvement has deep history and refined techniques. Accountability and authority are generally clear and aligned with performance incentives.

In healthcare, the culture has evolved from the faith-based, not-for-profit environment, and as such has exhibits a culture different from typical industrial organizations. Adding the intricate relationships between hospital and physician, finance and quality, and corporation and community further complicate change management in our environment.

Understanding that within healthcare there is a continuum, from the fully-leaned or for-profit organizations to ones with more traditional healthcare operations, this presentation will compare and contrast "typical" healthcare change management from that commonly seen in the literature and academia. Among the topics discussed will be organization and governance structures, constancy of purpose, tools and techniques necessary to ensure sustainable change, communication patterns, alignment of incentives and the like.

The presentation will conclude with the audience sharing their observations in a facilitated discussion.