Monday, May 30, 2016

Recognition for Our Work on the Triple Aim; Honoring Our Heroes

It is a great source of pride for me to attend a regional or national conference, seminar or symposium where our healthcare system is being recognized as a leader. Last week, I was in attendance at the Institute for HealthCare Improvement’s (IHI) Leadership Alliance spring meeting in Washington, D.C. with leaders from 40 other healthcare organizations in the country.

During the meeting, I was asked to be part of a three-person panel from the Alliance to present evidence that support from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) was helping us achieve the Triple Aim: Better Health, Better Care and Lower Costs for a population of people (….and we have added the fourth aim of More Joy for those providing the care). I presented our data at improving health and care while lowering cost through our patient-centered medical homes and the phenomenal work of all of our team members in the hospital. Also on the stage with us were Acting CMS Administrator Andy Slavitt and Acting Principal Deputy Administrator, Deputy Administrator for Innovation & Quality, and Chief Medical Officer, Patrick Conway, MD, MSc. The week before, Dr. Conway had come to GBMC to participate in our Lean Daily Management walk. When I told them about our accomplishments and how support from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation had really helped us transform care it was clear that they were pleased. The don’t frequently hear words of thanks and praise. I was really proud when Dr. Conway told the 200 or so people in the room how impressed he was with all that the GBMC HealthCare was doing and when he thanked us for helping CMS to learn daily improvement.

Kudos to Our IT Department

I am very excited about implementing EPIC, our new clinical and administrative information system, because when we go live each patient will only have one record in our system and it will make it easier to treat everyone the way we want our own loved ones treated. We have a lot to do between now and October 1st when we go live. But, I want to take a brief moment to thank Dave Hynson, GBMC’s Chief Information Officer, and his team, for all their hard work in getting us ready to go live. This is such a huge undertaking, but, Dave and his team have been doing an incredible job not just with EPIC’s implementation, but, with the everyday issues that come up across the GBMC HealthCare landscape. Thanks to all in our IT department who are working on EPIC and beyond!

Thank You Beth and Albert!

I recently had the opportunity to visit the Sheila K. Riggs Department of Radiation Oncology to make a special announcement. One of our most tenured and beloved physicians, Dr. Albert Blumberg and his wife, Beth, had done a wonderful thing for the staff of the Department of Radiation Oncology, and it was my honor and pleasure to make the formal announcement.

Beth and Albert, in a magnanimous gesture of gratitude have established the Beth and Albert Blumberg Radiation Oncology Staff Development Fund.  For more than 30 years, Dr. Blumberg has cared for thousands of patients who have come to GBMC for their care.  This wonderful gift is one way that the Blumbergs have decided to say, “Thank you!” to the Radiation Oncology staff who have made possible the Department’s and Dr. Blumberg’s success in delivering life-saving treatment.

The new fund will allow the Department Chair, Dr. Rob Brookland, to allocate critical dollars in support of requests by staff who are seeking continuing education.

Dr. Blumberg summed up the genesis of their decision to create this perpetual endowment, “This gift is to reinforce to the people I care about how much I really care about them.”

As I made the announcement about the Blumberg gift to a gathering of the Department’s staff, many were drying their eyes or visibly fighting back tears of admiration and joy for the Blumberg’s generosity and desire to recognize and reward them.

This very special occasion highlights the power of an effective team – the staff of the Sheila K. Riggs Department of Radiation Oncology is an amalgamation of people from diverse backgrounds who share one guiding principle: they support each other to ensure that every patient is treated like a member of their family.

Beth and Albert, GBMC salutes you for your many years of service, the team that you have helped to build and your amazing gift that will continue to give back to our staff so that they can grow in their careers and help our patients for a long time to come.

Honoring Our Heroes

Today is Memorial Day and it’s a special day during which we honor those who have given their lives during military service to our country.  Many of our GBMC employees have family members in military service and some are veterans themselves. We all have friends or family members whose lives of service included the ultimate sacrifice. So, on this Memorial Day holiday let’s make time to honor all of our veterans and their commitment to safeguard our security and be mindful of our heroes — living and dead. Let this be a moment to recognize with appreciation and respect our nation’s champions.

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