CMOs: Evidence-Based Medicine's Best Advocates
You can bet that as more research like this is published, showing that doing more of something provides no additional benefit, insurers and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will likely be watching closely, evaluating, and figuring out ways to incent hospitals and surgeons to adopt practice guidelines incorporating such findings—barring any extenuating circumstances.
In some cases, the penalties for noncompliance might be financial. But long before financial penalties for deviation from evidence-based medicine protocols, some hospitals and physician groups have been phenomenally successful in adopting them.
In fact, that's how many hospitals have successfully integrated evidence-based medicine protocols—by finding ways to have the physicians police themselves. And that is the challenge of leadership.
Just because new research is published and vetted is not sufficient to engineer change. Change can only come from a respected CMO who has the confidence of leaders on the surgical team. If he or she can convince them through research that certain practices are better for the patient and that the physicians will be evaluated on how closely they adhere to them, they'll change.
Peer pressure works.
Philip Betbeze is senior leadership editor with HealthLeaders Media.
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