Entering Shared Risk for Community Hospitals Through Physician Engagement

Greg Stock (Chief Executive Officer, Thibodaux Regional Medical Center), Mark F. Hebert, M.D., F.A.C.S. (Surgical Specialist, Thibodaux Regional Medical Center )

Session Overview

Small community hospitals are the life-blood of medicine in the United States. By and large, however, their CEO’s are not physicians, but businessmen who must deal with the realities of local board, budget, and political pressures. CEO must balance long-term goals with these short-term pressures while rarely feeling secure in their roles as CEO. Thibodaux Regional Medical Center has historically used Lean principles to wring out cost and achieve improvement. Formerly done by in-house staff with little physician involvement, the administration has engaged more with the physicians within the last year and it is changing Thibodaux’s culture for the better. As Thibodaux attempts to enter to enter the shared-risk market and it is critical to bridge any gap in trust between the affiliate physician-lead groups and the administration. Empowering clinicians to lead the improvement process, Thibodaux has already realized improvements around early recognition of septic patients. Mortality rates were already good, but Thibodaux is now poised to reduce the rate by another 25 percent; truly demonstrating a “never satisfied” improvement culture. Greg Stock, CEO, Thibodeaux Regional Medical Center and Dr. Mark Hebert will share how the correct methodology enables senior leaders and physicians to more readily and easily partner and collaborate. Most importantly, they will discuss critical need for trust and engagement between the administration and physicians. The relationships are healthier than they have been allowing for more collaboration, alignment of incentives, and team building. And finally, the two will review the positive returns a community hospital can achieve (hard and soft cost savings, improved patient care, positive cultural change, etc.) when physicians and senior leadership use each success as a building block to drive long-term, sustainable change in the future.

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