Clinical Linkages’ blog, 21st Century Patients, is resurfacing after a yearlong hiatus. The new format will emphasize the critical importance of supporting the clinician-patient partnership today. Healthcare is in the midst of dramatic changes that are placing considerable pressure on the clinician-patient partnership. Without effective partnering between patients and clinicians, healthcare becomes an impersonal space despite sophisticated technology, medications, and a retail approach of customer service. Patients, families, and clinicians alike recognize that this undercurrent is … [Read more...]
A Revolution is Coming for 21st Century Patients
Colonists and Patients July 4th is for celebrating America’s independence from England. We picnic, enjoy fireworks, and watch parades…its great fun. The Revolutionary war was anything but fun. It was gut-wrenching marches in stifling heat or blowing snow often with only rags tied on the soldiers’ feet because the boots were worn through. It was unthinkable that a people as varied in interests, wealth, and skills could come together for their desire to be free and beat the most powerful army in the world, but they did. Then the real work began, creating a government that would work and live … [Read more...]
What Do Our Patients Know About Their Hospital Care?
If you are a nurse or doctor and practice in a hospital today you understand the feeling of being on a fast train that has gone out of control. You and your patients are living in a rapidly changing environment, and the end point for this very fast ride is an unknown. Yet, you practice to achieve best outcomes for your patients, perhaps with variable resource and staffing. But, if the numbers (those measurements of outcome, satisfaction and other factors) are not in the ballpark, everyone suffers because money is lost to the hospital in which you practice. In a recent post for Forbes … [Read more...]
Patients and Black Holes
Patients fall into endless space everyday….Black Holes are the side effect of modern healthcare. In the early 20th century Black Holes in outer space were seen as a phenomena where matter was absorbed and nothing could escape. If you, a loved one, or even an employee has ever had to deal with a health issue that requires coordination between various professionals it is likely you understand the Black Hole analogy all too well. A recent Washington Post article, “Many doctors, too little communication”,hits on a key factor creating Black Holes, the lack of care coordination. It … [Read more...]
Is Hospital Care Patient-Centered?
Why this question matters to all of us! There is so much political babble surrounding healthcare that we have lost the ability to focus on the core business. The patient is the center of our work but we are in danger of the core business being overrun by competing and confounding factors. Soon it will be 2013 and many aspects of healthcare change will become more apparent, and this is only the beginning. So how do we cope with constant change? We must accept the essential need for people who seek care to become 21st Century Patients. No longer can one depend on simply following … [Read more...]
Patients Have a Voice: Did You Notice on October 1st?
If you listened to the Monday morning news with your coffee, the “dry” story about Medicare’s new payment structure to hospitals may have slipped by you, especially if are not “in the industry” or do not have Medicare insurance. But this is a significant story, particularly when we consider the importance of taking an active role in understanding our healthcare. Effective October 1st hospitals will be rewarded in dollars… or NOT… according to the outcome measures for 12 specific patient problems such as heart attacks, pneumonia and the use of antibiotics. The measures are designed to see … [Read more...]
Influencing Change in Today’s Hospital Care
Although regulators and payers influence many of the actions surrounding patient care, particularly in the hospital, the unadvertised and underused driving force for positive change comes from these important groups: These groups are . . . Patients & Families Clinicians Employers Their power comes from shared goals. (1)They want to achieve good outcomes from the care that is rendered. (2) They seek to prevent harm and (3) control unnecessary costs that are associated with medical mistakes, such as healthcare acquired infections. This is called “patient-centric” care. … [Read more...]