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11 Hot Healthcare Buzzwords for 2011

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, January 6, 2011

Look for modifications to the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems survey that ask even more detailed questions about length of wait times, and whether patients feel their care was well explained. Also anticipate better utilization of volunteers (think Walmart greeters) to ask if waiting patients would like something to read or drink, and improved access to entertainment or the web (movies, TV and internet access) to ease patients' anxiety while they are in a healthcare setting.

7. Alignment. This word means many things to many people, but in this context we're talking about standardization of equipment, procedures and supply purchases, programs, and policies.

Alignment can be considered a fighting word, because hospital systems with multiple facilities and autonomous programs that cater to individual physician or administrator preferences may balk at the imposition of limits. But systems that are steering full steam toward these goals believe that they will be the ones to succeed.

8. Respectful Crisis Management. Sometimes, providers make very big mistakes. But how healthcare systems respond to these unfortunate events can determine whether the next mistake is prevented, or whether it embitters staff, family, the public and the community in a toxic cloud of mistrust and blame.

This term actually represents a growing area of scientific research to find the best management strategies that provide productive responses to a critical healthcare error. Responses that unify the team to acknowledge and mitigate harm and prevent a similar mistake from occurring are the ones to adopt. No one benefits if those who made the mistake are so afraid, they won't dare explain what factors contributed to their making it.

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2 comments on "11 Hot Healthcare Buzzwords for 2011"


Wayne G. Fischer, PhD (1/7/2011 at 8:47 AM)
The NEJM article that mentions "creative destruction" is *not* Nov 11th - but rather Dec 30th. Unfortunately, like most who are ignorant of the basics of continual and breakthrough improvement (in quality, safety, costs - whatever...), the authors suffer from the delusion that setting (implicit) goals and redefining incentives will somehow empower *and* enable organizations to transform themselves. Alas,were that thru...

Barbara Watkins (1/6/2011 at 11:56 AM)
Cheryl: You forgot my favorite "meaningful use!" That is a huge buzz word for physicians and EHR. Barb Watkins Administrator Heart & Vascular Center of Arizona