C-Suite Strategy for Successful Change: Integration is the key to reinvent healthcare
Recently, Becker’s Hospital Review convened 20 CEOs from a diverse cross-section of healthcare delivery systems around the U.S. The purpose was to learn what they (and other C-suite leaders) are doing to successfully adapt to the unprecedented change our industry is experiencing and to also examine the myriad challenges they face along the way.
One significant conclusion: in order to create successful and integrated delivery models, it’s imperative that healthcare systems break through legacy silos and acknowledge the important co-existence of horizontal and vertical integration—across boundaries of care, within and outside of a hospital structure.
The first step is defining “integration” for that health system. The next step is building a team of senior leaders who can identify potential obstacles and create a vision of what integration entails. This team approach differs from the past when senior leaders typically oversaw their respective business units and provided some input into system-wide decisions. But to succeed today, true integration requires a team of those leaders with the common goal of diminishing traditional fragmentation in order to create a successful integrated and patient- centered delivery model.
Some direct outtakes from the Becker’s article addressing this issue:
- Wrestling with an array of complex issues, including infrastructure requirements, organizational structure, partnerships, efficiencies and culture is central to the job of architecting a delivery system positioned for long-term viability.
- Building delivery systems focused on access, quality and the patient experience requires alliances previously unimagined or impossible, often extending care across vast geographical regions
- An increasing number of hospital CEOs are hiring outside expertise to guide them through a multi-year process of culture change
Quarterly meetings with executive teams are becoming standard in order to align interests, priorities and sharpen the focus on what is important, and everyone from employees, to managers and physicians are pulling together in order to truly integrate.
The Becker’s recap closes with this quote from the head of a faith-based hospital network in the Midwest, “The national change is creating energy. The challenge is harnessing that energy to move healthcare in a direction that clearly benefits today’s delivery systems — and, most of all, patients and communities.”
It takes an integration to do that.