Healthcare leaders have a lot on their plate, but with simple steps like putting a physician in charge of hospital management, and prioritizing focus on patient care from top to bottom hospital professionals, they can improve their hospital fundamentals.
Management Strategies for Healthcare Leaders
The state of healthcare is leaving its leaders with their work cut out for them. The healthcare industry is wrought with complaints: the service is too slow, the wait times are too long and the receptionist is difficult to get ahold of. This has to do with the shift in how patients see themselves when they receive care, as studies show that more and more they think and behave more like customers than patients of medical professionals.
Steps to Innovation
In a world run by the internet and internet devices, healthcare innovation is falling behind. People expect scheduling a medical appointment to be about as time consuming as scheduling a hair appointment; although this may be an unrealistic expectation, there are many aspects of medical visits, such as pricing, that should not be so difficult to figure out. People expect user interface in the healthcare industry to be, not only a possibility, but an imminent expectation.
Healthcare innovation is no easy task. Although innovation happens regularly through medical advancements and breakthroughs, these are often not seen on the patient side, as new medical trials and practices often take years to become common practice. According to the University of Cincinnati, “Radiology and imaging have become hotbeds for technological innovation, and 3D printing appears to be one of the latest and more progressive to take shape in these industries in recent memory.” Like other medical advancement, 3D printing in radiology will likely be far more pronounced once insurers and the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services begin to reimburse radiology departments for the use of 3D printers.
The customer is always right, even if the patient isn’t, and considering that patients often pay hundreds of dollars to see medical professionals, some would argue that they should be treated as customers. Patients who behave like customers are behind the trend of consumer-driven electronics as a growing feature in electronic medical device manufacturing. Patients want their money’s worth of service and care, and they want it to be as efficient as their internet of things devices will allow. Most importantly, they want to know they are prioritized and that their health is in good hands, which is demonstrated through receiving the most patient-centered care.
Healthcare leaders must know how to manage a hospital, and it’s not actually feasible or correct to allow patients to run hospitals, although it is one perspective of healthcare management that leaders should take into consideration. According to Medical News Today, “At the organizational level, the results of the survey showed 77 percent reported that a commitment to the patient and family was a part of their culture and a key reason for their high performance.” While this may seem like a basic standard of care, the application of this level of care must be carried from hospital receptionists to top level management.
It can be difficult to imagine any role that top hospital executives can play in patient satisfaction, however, studies show that hospital quality scores are approximately 25 percent higher in physician-run hospitals than in those run by non-physicians. Many hospitals today hire management professionals to run hospitals rather than physicians, which in turn, causes some hospitals to be run more like businesses than care facilities. This has a negative impact on patient satisfaction levels, as it can cause patient care details to be missed in order to prioritize hospital upkeeping details.
Patient care will always be one of the top factors in distinguishing the best hospitals from the rest. However, preventative health care should continue to be a top priority in and out of hospitals. An investment of $10 per person in health promotion programs that encourage exercise, offer sound nutritional advice, and help those addicted to tobacco products quit could cut annual U.S. health care costs by $16 billion. Health promotion should continue to be a priority for healthcare leaders in order to keep costs down.
Healthcare leaders have a lot on their plate, but with simple steps like putting a physician in charge of hospital management, and prioritizing focus on patient care from top to bottom hospital professionals, they can improve their hospital fundamentals. While embracing healthcare innovation is no easy task, budgeting to make room for inevitable and highly valuable medical advancements will help hospitals stay current with their practices. Preventative care should never be overlooked in the healthcare hospitals provide, and while hospitals are made to care for people, it’s important to give patients the tools to take care of themselves. By applying the research for successful hospital management, healthcare leaders can ensure they are doing what’s best for their staff and their patients.