We are now in the second week of a census surge to begin the new year. If you have been watching the news, this is not a middle Georgia phenomenon but is country-wide. There are now 46 states with widespread flu, and that, coupled with the extreme cold, has hit everyone hard, especially the very young and old and those with chronic illnesses like COPD and asthma. This is compounded with widespread travel over the holidays helping spread the flu and people being closer together indoors because of the extremely cold temperatures. We have seen a significant increase in ED flu swabs over past 2 weeks. Over the past 7 days, we’ve seen 34 positive swabs (an increase from 13 swabs 2 weeks ago). It is critically important that each of you follows strict infection control measures like washing your hands in and out of patient rooms, masks if you are not vaccinated for the flu, and following all infection control measures for those patients that require more than standard precautions. Protect our patients, and protect yourselves with great hand washing hygiene.
Thanks for the great teamwork over these two weeks where many of you have come in early, stayed late, worked extra and worked in units other than your home unit. We are grateful and our patients are grateful to have dedicated professionals who always put the patient first. Now is a great time to show your gratitude by posting those “Thank You” notes to each other on our recognition wall at https://coliseumcares.isrewards.com/Company/CHSPoints/Login.
Earlier this week, Greg and I traveled to Savannah with the other Georgia CEOs to get briefed on important legislation related to healthcare with our HCA lobbyist team. The Georgia CEOs along with our Division President, Hugh Tappan, received updates on the upcoming elections for Governor and Lt. Governor and who we think has the best chance at being elected…and how that might impact our industry and company. There are currently two important bills being introduced during this session. The first is around deregulation/reform of the Certificate of Need process that governs investments in our hospitals like new equipment and services and the expansion of facilities (adding beds). The second is frequently called “surprise billing” or “balance billing”. This refers to the cost left for the patient when a hospital or a physician is out of network for the insurer. We are watching these closely and providing input to our local legislators to be sure we get what is best for our hospitals, community, patients and physicians. Staying involved and connected to the political process is vital to our success as a health system.
Just a quick reminder for CMC staff that our HCA Employee Engagement Check-Up Survey began Jan 8th and ends Jan 19th. Your input is very important to your leadership team – and to your co-workers! So far, approximately 25% of you have participated. Please take a few moments to provide us feedback on our progress.
We frequently mention striving to have a culture of patient safety. What does that mean? “Patient Safety cultures are consistently safe, create a blame-free environment, encourage collaboration, and have an organizational dedication to safety.”
Beginning on January 30th and ending in late February, we will ask you to take our annual AHRQ patient safety survey. Why do we do these surveys? Here is the why:
- Raise awareness about patient safety issues
- Fulfill directives or regulatory requirements
- Diagnose the current status of safety culture
- Evaluate specific patient safety interventions or programs
- Conduct internal and external benchmarking
- Track change over time.
We will provide more information as these dates move closer but thanks in advance for participating and helping us provide a safe environment to care for our patients.
I know for many of you die-hard Georgia Bulldog fans Monday’s game was a heart breaker. As a leader, I am always observing how other leaders guide their organizations, whether it is a Fortune 500 CEO or a football coach like Kirby Smart. So, as I reflected on the game I found a few valuable observations on leadership from the Georgia Bulldog football team. Here are my observations from Georgia’s run at a National Championship:
- Doesn’t take long to reach elite performance if everyone believes in the vision and works toward it.
- Kirby Smart took UGA to the National Championship game in his 2nd year.
- If everyone works together and stays focused on the goal, great things happen.
- UGA won their first SEC championship since 2005 and finished #2 in the nation.
- You don’t have to have the best players to do great things, but you have to have the right players with the right attitude.
- Not a Heisman trophy winner, but a true freshman QB led his team to the National Championship game.
- Everyone must be ready and willing to contribute to the team.
- Jake Fromm was called on to lead his team after an unexpected injury to the starting QB. What if he hadn’t been prepared?
- There are leaders among us waiting to be recognized and have a chance to make an impact.
- No one would have expected Jake Fromm to lead with the poise and maturity he exhibited as a true freshman, but Kirby Smart was willing to take a chance on him.
- Don’t let setbacks serve as an excuse or take you away from your vision.
- When the starting QB went down, UGA could have made excuses about why they shouldn’t be SEC or National Champs. Instead, they went to work looking for a solution.
- Relying on support from others will elevate your performance.
- There is no doubt that UGA’s dedicated fans helped motivate and elevate their team’s performance!
- Not reaching your goal is not failure.
- Though UGA didn’t win the National Championship, they learned a lot about their strengths and weaknesses and where they need to grow to achieve their goal.
- Learn from where you’ve been, come back stronger; be a force to be reckoned with.
- UGA’s players, staff, and their loyalty to one another coupled with their vision for the future will deliver continued success.
Marketing pulled all these thoughts together into a short video…check it out:
Go dawgs! Sic’em! Woof! Woof! Woof!
Thanks again to everyone for the teamwork and focus on our patients!