Tuesday, August 18, 2020

A Conversation with Erlene Washington

Last month, I highlighted our soon to be new advanced primary care site at Padonia Station. The practice will serve the entire family, from newborns to elders. It will be staffed with a team of physicians, advanced practitioners, nurse care managers, care coordinators, and support staff. We are looking forward to adding urgent care early next year.

GBMC Health Partners at Padonia only one of many exciting new initiatives and changes taking place within our physician company. Recently I caught up with Erlene Washington, CPA, vice president and chief operating officer at GBMC Health Partners, to get an update. Erlene joined GBMC in the Spring of 2019 and she has been a great addition to our team bringing her experience and insight in physician practice management.

Q: How did your background prepare you for this role?
A: I have a strong financial background, and this has helped me to understand the “why” and to find solutions to problems with optimal results, both from an operational and a bottom-line perspective. 

Q: How’s the job going so far and what were your first impressions of GBMC and GBMC Health Partners?
A: So far, I have thoroughly enjoyed working at GBMC. The best part of the job is the concentration on the Four aims (Better Heath, Better Care, Least Waste and More Joy). These aims guide my work every day. It has been wonderful working with various teams and colleagues from across GBMC Health Partners and the GBMC HealthCare System. I look forward to sharing ideas and working side by side with my team daily.

Q: What have been some of the toughest challenges during this COVID-19 pandemic?
A: The toughest challenge has been keeping our patients and staff safe, while still providing outstanding care. We have been able to overcome this by using a combination of telehealth, social distancing, and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), while working to secure supplies such as masks, gowns, and wipes, which have been in high demand worldwide. 

Q: What can you tell us about our soon to be Patient Centered Medical Home Model at GBMC Health Partners at Padonia and how is this location going to be different than the others within the GBMC Health Partners family?
A: Our Padonia office is a 14,123-square foot, state-of-the-art, multi-specialty facility housing primary care, urgent care, gynecology, urogynecology, and orthopaedics, with the opportunity for more subspecialties. The facility will offer Imaging and Labs along with 23 exam rooms with interactive 47-inch touch screen monitors using voice activation. As in our Family Care Associates office, we will utilize The Virginia Mason model with no waiting room and on- and off-stage rooming. Patients have the option of checking in using geo-referencing check-in technology (Hello Patient) and self-cleaning kiosks. 

Q: What is the one major aspect of GBMC Health Partners at Helping Up Mission (HUM) that you would want potential patients from the community to know?
A: If you are in need of a provider, GBMC Health Partners at Helping Up Mission is a great place to get your care right within your own community. Patients have access to in-office appointments with Baltimore's best specialists at GBMC, and 24-hour patient access to their medical records via their phone or personal computer. At GBMC Health Partners at Helping Up Mission, we will be accountable with the patient for their health. The physician-led team will deliver immunizations, cancer screenings, and physical exams as well as personalized care coordination to manage acute and chronic illnesses. 

Q: What do you see in the future for GBMC Health Partners?
A: We will work hard to see that GBMC Health Partners continues to grow, offer the best care to our patients, and provide the most joy to our staff. 

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