Healthcare Scales Mediocrity


Scale. How do we scale. How do we accelerate adoption? How do we ensure that people will adopt the business, the model, the technology?

In healthcare we discuss “scale” on a daily basis.

We discuss population management as a way to scale care across our country. Focusing on segments of the population that are diagnosed with cancer, obesity, arthritis, alzheimer, and many other “chronic” diagnosis.

We talk about EHR and EMR. How do healthcare organizations and physician offices purchase, implement, and take advantages of the power of an electronic health or medical record. How do organizations roll out the technology, how are they interfacing with other software, and how do they get the culture to accept it.

We focus on new technologies like DaVinici and robotic assisted surgery, or MR, or Ultrasound, or CT, or X-ray, or other medical devices. We seek guidance on new clinical uses, new reimbursement opportunities, and ways to improve our clinical workflows, efficiencies, and outcomes.

We attend medial conferences, read journal articles, and go on site visits to share “best practices.”

Before many of us make a decision, we want to see the “proof” that someone else has made the same decision, they have been able to implement, they have been successful, and that they can share their process and ‘secret’ sauce with us.

Yet at the same time, I can walk into any healthcare organization or physician office and hear the administrators and staff say things such as,

“We are an exception to the rule”

“Our organization and physician structure is different than everyone else”

“Our process and workflow is special”

“We do things differently because of how we serve our community”

“We use national guidelines as a reference to develop our own unique clinical pathways”

In a world where each healthcare organization is special, unique, different, and creates their own way of doing things, why do leaders pay so much attention to learning, sharing, and adopting “best practices?”

Other then the “Teflon” effect (Teflon effect: adopting a process or technology that others in similar positions have made to displace blame in the event the project fails) to rationalize your decisions, leaders need to take a stance and lead.

We need leaders to make the tough decisions and do what is right for the communities they serve.

Sharing “best practices” equates to trying to make a round peg fit into a square hole.

Adopting “best practices” scales mediocrity.

Healthcare needs less mediocrity.

As always, you can feel free to contact me at: CANCERGEEK@GMAIL.COM or follow me on twitter @cancergeek



One response to “Healthcare Scales Mediocrity

  1. It’s a tricky balance for programs that soley rely on Medicaid/Medicare to get away from “best practices” or evidence based practice. These practices often drive funding. Adopting a innovative piece of tech is a huge risk a company/county/state program. Going against the grain is important but comes with risk. I think people are out there willing to take risks but not for the sake of the programs they run. I think best practices or I sometimes call them “treatment in a can” have their limitations. I think it is how you adopt these best practices to meet YOUR needs and those you serve is what matters.

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