What does it take to be innovative? Entrepreneurs and business leaders strive to craft novel solutions to combat daily challenges in their industries, and we know that hospital leaders are no different. When we talked to a group of Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) from top hospitals about the challenges they face, innovation was a hot topic. Many CFOs wished that hospital departments would come to them proactively with cost-effective ideas and ways to increase the volume in the anesthesia department.
True innovators look at processes and tools that already exist and ask, How can I make this better? In a hospital, innovations can help reduce waste, cut costs, or increase efficiency. They also can help hospitals meet new regulations in the changing healthcare landscape. At Sheridan, we encourage our physicians at client hospitals to constantly examine their current processes to realize positive change. Here are some of the innovation tips we live by:
- Identify your pain points. The old saying goes, “the squeaky wheel gets the grease” – so isolate that one issue or procedure that causes the most problems, and drill down until you have a solution.
- Ask better questions. Broad questions can be intimidating and hard to answer, so get specific. Instead of asking how to reduce hospital costs, look at a specific process and ask how you can make it better.
- Examine current standards. Look at your existing processes to see if you can take advantage of any economies of scale?
- Ask for help from a trusted partner. Take advantage of your partnerships with physician groups. When you work with an anesthesia group that is aligned with your hospital’s needs, you have an immediate resource to champion positive change. Get tips for how to evaluate a hospital partner in this video.
What do you think – do you have any additional tips for encouraging innovation in a hospital? Share them with us on Facebook!