Skip to main content

What Hospitals Need in 2011: Insurgents With Gumption!

Today, several related themes point the way to R&R - Resolutions and Revitalization - in 2011. 

First, Seth Godin contrasts status quo-destroying insurgents and committee-pleasing incumbents.  Says Godin,
"It takes guts to be an insurgent, and even though the asymmetrical nature of challenging the status quo is in their favor, often we find we're short on guts. ... and then the incumbents prevail."
So, resolution #1: More insurgents!

Second, Anthony Cirillo muses about hospitals staying relevant, given that many are ceding first mover status on key industry opportunities;
"Frankly I see behavior from hospitals. It is easy to hide behind the "complexity" of hospitals and the "it's hard to turn a battleship on a dime" mentality. So we have business as 'fee for service' usual while others are progressively plowing ahead.

"There is no lack of gumption from those outside of the hospital arena. If Lowe's management can figure out why it makes sense to (send cardiac patients) to Cleveland Clinic, it is only a matter of time before others do the same calculating.

"Maybe hospitals are moving and changing--but just too slowly."
Thus resolution #2: More gumption!

Cirillo sees hospitals' changing roles being forced upon them by unmet challenges and unforeseen events, unexpected competition, untraditional ideas and their own fear.   My view is that, increasingly,  hospital admissions are seen as process defects elsewhere in the system, and insurgents see fortunes accruing to those correcting the defects.

Think about it.  How many things have to go wrong OUTSIDE of a hospital for an admission to occur?  And if the best, safest and cheapest length of stay is ZERO, well, fix the defects, cut off the admission before it happens.  The long-term threat to hospitals' business model ought to be clear.

So much for business as usual.  It's the end of deliberate, incremental change.  Insurgents are storming the ramparts.  Barbarians are at the gates. 

The real question is whether hospitals have sufficient gumption to think like insurgents, to mount their own strategy of counter-insurgency.  I'd like to think so.  I'd like to help.  But I'm afraid it's a question about which the jury is still out.  Stay tuned.


Popular posts from this blog

Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth!

After they invent The Next Big Thing with assistance from The Geek Group and Inventables.   Let's continue our journey through innovation, production and reinvention, shall we?

After this post about my interest in creating a tinkerer's paradise, I heard from Casey DuBois, a Linkedin connection, about The Geek Group, a Grand Rapids, MI not-for-profit that's way ahead of me.  (No surprise there!)

From The Geek Group's website:
"Imagine if you could go to the workshop of the Mythbusters and hang out as one of the gang. Or what it would be like at spend your free time working in Bill Nye's labs, or hang out with Mr. Wizard. That is what the Geek Group is for. Instead of being just a face on a television, we are a real brick and mortar facility with all of the equipment, labs, and tools that most people only see on television. This is a place where you can not only get up close and see giant robots, lightning machines, lasers and all other manner of science and rese…

Behind Every Resume Is A Potential Customer...and Karma.

I recently heard from an executive colleague who, thanks to a merger, found herself looking for her next opportunity. Her story, probably depressingly familiar to many of you, was all about the big black hole of rudeness and non-responsiveness that so often sums up employers' attitudes toward candidates.

This colleague, thinking she'd see the healthcare world from a new vantage point, pursued opportunities with consultants, IT vendors, architects and other suppliers who, far from appreciating her solid resume, were like the 3 Stooges of clueless.

So back to a senior health system role she went, WHERE SHE NOW INITIATES AND MANAGES RFPs FOR SOME OF THE VERY SAME COMPANIES who wouldn't talk to her as a candidate, but profess their LOVE for her now that she's got money to spend on their services.

Not gonna happen. Any guesses who's off the RFP list?

I smiled when I heard her story, imagining the BusDev people working hard to grow the revenue pipeline, all the while b…

The Answer For Lower Healthcare Costs Is...

...Customer Service.

From the New York Times: Seattle's Iora Primary Care is a new model of primary care, seeking national scale and venture capital funding.  Though the ambition may be outsize, the concepts are not new. Daily team huddles. Health coaches. Taking satisfaction surveys seriously and mining results for actionable insights. Employer and payer partnerships. Pay-for-performance not volumes. Loose-tight operations (wellness options are "loose" - i.e. varying from site to
site, while EHR alignment is "tight" and non-negotiable.)

According to the article:
"...small change(s) can make a big difference in a patient’s health — what good is the perfect drug if the patient can’t swallow it? — but the extra-mile work it took to get there can be a challenge for the typical primary care practice in the United States. Harried by busy schedules and paid on a piecework model, many doctors rush from visit to visit, avoid phone calls and emails that …