Steve’s Weekly Wrap-Up

When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light, for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself. Tecumseh

As we enter the Thanksgiving Day weekend I want to thank all of you who will be here serving our patients rather than being with your family. I recognize that this is valuable time but want you to know how valuable you are in the care of our patients on these holidays. I hope that you will still find time to connect with your family and friends and have the opportunity to reflect on those things you are thankful for this year. I know our patients appreciate the care you will be delivering them and are thankful you are here to serve them.

My special thanks to Jackie and Clara for the great hospital Thanksgiving meal on Monday. It was great and everyone I spoke with enjoyed it immensely. Great job FNS!!!!

This week Lance Jones and I spent several hours discussing our individual hospitals and Coliseum health System’s strategic plans. It’s our desire to leverage the resources of the health system and HCA as well as our talented staff (yes, that’s you!) to drive our collective efforts to a level never achieved in Middle Georgia. It is however not enough for Lance and I and the rest of the executive team to have a vision for our future state; you have to share in that as well. You told us that in the employee survey. Today, I distributed a form to your Directors so that you can write a vision statement and submit it for inclusion. Once we have input from both facilities we will attempt to capture a Vision Statement that we are all invested in. So I thank you in advance for your participation. Once you have provided your thoughts return it to your director and they will drop them off in Administration. I look forward to your thoughts.

Patient safety has to be part of every thought, process and action we take in caring for our patients.  One of the ways we trend and correct safety issues through the incident reporting system. This system allows Lynn Hamilton, our Director of Risk Management, to trend occurrences and then work with the departments these occur in to improve processes and hopefully eliminate these from reoccurring. I need your commitment to enter safety issues in this system when they happen. Failure to document these puts patients, you and our hospital at risk.

In my last wrap-up I wrote about medication administration and what a high risk activity that is in the care of our patients. Even in the most controlled environment medication misadventures happen through no fault of individuals but system or process breakdowns. We are under-reporting medication errors at CNH at it is putting our patients at risk. If we don’t know the issues we can’t protect the patients by fixing the processes that have broken down. I have received feedback that the reports don’t get filled out because it is too cumbersome. Is that what you would tell a family who had an adverse medication event or even worse death that we knew about and didn’t report it? I have asked Richard, Lynn and Pat to re-engage you and your directors in getting these reported. While I am very proud of the care here I would be naïve to believe we have 3-5 medication errors in an entire month. Here are some types of errors – wrong time, wrong route, wrong drug, wrong dose, missed dose, wrong patient, and missed order. I am asking for you to protect our patients and report these errors daily in the incident reporting system.

We will be conducting a disaster drill as part of our emergency management preparation in early December. This will involve some type of mass patient influx among other scenarios. We will be doing this as part of both campuses so it will test our intra-system communication as well. Please review your EM plans with your Director so you are prepared for the drill.

We are another week closer to being a tobacco free campus. Please be sure you are prepared if you are a smoker. Use the HCA rewards resources, see your physicians to get aids or medication or some other strategy that allows you to make it through the workday tobacco free. We need to role model what we teach the community about health.

This week CNH was number 3 in the South Atlantic Division and CMC was number 2. Even with improved scores we dropped which means it is getting competitive. Let’s continue to improve on our interactions with our patients and become world class at making a memorable patient experience.

Thanks for everyone’s participation in the QRS process last week. We will have our final report this week and will begin putting actions and accountability in place to improve the processes found to have some areas of concern. We need everyone’s focus to put sustainable plans in place to close the gaps in these areas. This process is again to insure we are providing the safest environment for our patients to receive care.

Thanks for sharing your time and talent at CNH!