"The Ronan Report" provides insight about the activities at the Western Maryland Health System in Cumberland, Maryland, and about the changes taking place in healthcare today from a CEO's perspective.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Let's Talk Meetings

Last week, we completed our quarterly Let's Talk meetings with the WMHS staff.  These meetings are the equivalent to town hall meetings for employees.   We have a series of meetings throughout the week whereby I give a presentation on the state of the system and then open it up for questions, comments, rumors or concerns.  For this set of meetings, Tom Dowdell, COO, covered two of the meetings as I was out of town; thanks Tom.  The entire executive team is in attendance along with the Compliance Officer to listen and to raise any issues that they feel may be important.

It is routinely time very well spent for both groups and myself.  It is especially important for the staff to know what is happening related to health care reform and payment reform and how each will impact WMHS in the coming fiscal year.  The meetings included a presentation on the newly approved strategic plan, wage and benefit adjustments, employee fundraising campaign results ($240K raised with 26% of our employees participating), the WMHS successes of FY '11 in physician and advanced level practitioners recruitment (70 in the last two years); pt. satisfaction results exceeding target in every area; door-to-provider times in the ED at 24 minutes on average last week, door-to-balloon times in the Cath Lab at 36 minutes; details on our new Wound Care program expansion and the addition of two hyperbaric O2 chambers; two new primary care centers opening in the Summer and Fall;  all of the IT infrastructure improvements (physician order entry, electronic health record, new systems in the OR, ED and Home Care), doubling the capacity of the Observation Unit, the expansion of our Carelink program and our efforts in improving employee and community wellness. 

In closing, I had the opportunity to show the attached cartoon as an illustration of how important it is to ready for anything and, in our case, it's change.

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