“If you build it, he will come,” a voice famously whispered in Field of Dreams. It drifted on twilight’s current until it reached Ray Kinsella, who stood silently watching the sun set at the edge of his gilded cornfield. It was a voice that urged him to transformation; it dared him to dream and inspired him to act.
Have you heard the voice?
Across the country, the human and financial costs of medical error hurt patients, providers, and institutions. A 2013 review from the Journal of Patient Safety estimates that each year in the United States alone, between 210,000 and 400,000 hospital patients suffer some type of preventable harm that contributes to their deaths.
Now more than ever, “zero harm” must be more than aspirational words, but the central, unequivocal, and measurable focus of risk management and patient safety work. Risk management has the potential to transform the safety of healthcare: to generate actionable risk intelligence, to enable faster adaptation of targeted solutions, to mitigate loss and create value, and ultimately to reduce harm and improve patient safety.
But where do we start? The world around us is evolving, and sweeping reforms in healthcare, economics, and politics can create seemingly insurmountable challenges. The idea of change can be daunting when we aren’t sure where it might bring us, or how far we must travel along its winding road. But changes must be made; our patients’ lives depend on it.
So we start by rethinking our positions and our priorities, reexamining our values and processes, and then reorganizing ourselves: our teams, our structures. The Risk Authority Stanford’s new book, Inside Looking Up, is a scholarly, practice-based work for leaders in healthcare and those invested in reconsidering, reassessing, and enhancing traditional risk management practices. It helps readers discover who can be an innovator, why it matters, and how listening to and acting on the call for change can achieve greater heights of success than they’ve ever imagined.
Inside Looking Up offers insight on how a commitment to innovation– through buy-in, collaboration, and dedicated resources– can help risk managers build a better playing field that benefits everyone involved. Among other themes, it explores:
- How traditional practices can situate a new paradigm in healthcare
- Why innovation is a process which requires structure, and how that structure can affect new ecosystems
- How effective collaboration can help a vision take hold
- The importance of cross-industry tool integration in design thinking and decision analysis
- How to use personal and professional motivation to drive a culture of safety
- How to embrace and sustain lasting change
It’s time to start listening closely to the voices calling for change; time to usher in a new dawn of healthcare risk management in which the care and safety of patients is true north. Innovation is the compass that will guide our way.
With expert insight from lawyers, clinicians, finance strategists, safety engineers, and patient communication specialists, The Risk Authority Stanford team is committed to improving the effectiveness and efficiency of care delivery systems– and we know that we are not alone.
It’s time to charge forward, together.
Inside Looking Up will be available at booksellers in March 2016. To learn more or to download an excerpt from Inside Looking Up, click here.
By: Jeff Driver, CEO
Jeff has more than 25 years of experience as a risk management professional and has managed the enterprise risk in community, tertiary, and academic medical centers. A frequent speaker and author on risk management issues, Jeff has expertise in incorporating and managing subsidiary insurance companies, assuring organization corporate compliance, claims and litigation management, patient safety and loss control, employment practices consulting, and the development, reorganization, and implementation of alternate risk financing programs.
Jeff currently serves as the chief executive officer of The Risk Authority Stanford, and as the chief risk officer of Stanford Health Care and Stanford Children’s Health. Before joining Stanford, he was chief risk officer and director of regulatory advocacy at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston.