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From elsewhere: NC hospital closes, but was it really because of politics?

You know you are early for your flight when...

Posting on the Huffington Post, Jeffery Young writes: North Carolina Hospital Closes, Citing No Medicaid Expansion

A small hospital in a coastal North Carolina community will close its doors within months and its parent company says Gov. Pat McCrory’s (R) decision not to expand Medicaid under President Barack Obama’s health care reform law is partly to blame.

But wait, there’s more…

Other considerations, including outdated facilities, also led to the company’s decision to close the hospital but North Carolina foregoing the Medicaid expansion contributed to the decision, Vidant Health CEO David Herman told The Huffington Post.

I’m not surprised we’re seeing smaller community hospitals struggle. Last week the great Mike Sevilla, MD wrote an op-ed for KevinMD questioning: is the end near for small community hospitals?

Without doubt, I think we’ll see more of these closures. But we have to also pay attention to the root cause, particularly in these still early days of PPACA’s implementation.

Note Mr. Herman’s other considerations —outdated facilities. At some point, buying a multimillion dollar scanner or other required life saving equipment for a 49 bed hospital just doesn’t make sense.

It also may not make sense to operate 49 bed hospitals within an hour’s drive of a larger, more sophisticated facility.

We’re seeing the shift away from the shiny hospital on the hill as the only anchor for providers and care delivery for a community.

That story is a lot more interesting than politics and Medicaid expansion.

I wrote elsewhere: Making the most of your next doctor’s visit — Better Humans — Medium

Making the most of your next doctor’s visit Learn tips from ePatients about ways to hack you visit for better healthcare and a better relationship with your doctor.If you are lucky enough to be fairly healthy, then you may only go to the doctor once a year. Making the most out of your annual physical, or a trip to the doctor can be challenging. There is an emerging trend, known as ePatients, who are empowered, engaged and experts. By learning some of ePatient techniques, you too can improve your help and your relationship with your healthcare providers. Even if your health needs require more frequent visits, there are still some tips and tricks to make sure your questions are answered and your needs met.

via Making the most of your next doctor’s visit — Better Humans — Medium.

Elsewhere: "I fear to be a patient" by Don Berwick

For my elsewhere series, I like to highlight content from others from around the web. Usually, I preface those blurbs and links. Sometimes something is so powerful it can and should stand on its own. Don Berwick is a pediatrician and the current Administrator for the Center of Medicare Services (CMS) by appointment of President Obama.

Elsewhere: Bar or Hospital - it’s people. You have to get to know people. Relationships. Take care of them

In my growing elsewhere series, I've been highlighting content from other sources online. You know, curating, as the hip social media types say. Last week, the LA Times reported that 'hospitals are looking more like luxury hotels'. The article says that a report found that, to patients, the non clinical experience mattered twice as much as the clinical experience. I call it patient experience. In healthcare, it means how we care for someone's complete needs - emotional, clinical, spiritual, etc. Sometimes it is as simple as spotting the guest who needs directions and walking them to the right place. Sometimes it means giving a hug, or sitting and listening. In the end, it is about people taking care of people.

So what do a bar and a hospital have in common? How you treat people is how people will think of you. I'm proud to call An Bui, "Chief Beer Officer" at Mekong in Richmond a friend. I'm proud to call him a friend because he treats me like a friend. An's special gift is treating everyone he meets like someone special, getting to know them and providing the best service he can, every time. This week, is profiling An -- the quote below typifies An and his approach to service. It also shows his affinity for and success with extending his style of service outside the four walls of Mekong using social media.

It’s people. You have to get to know people. Relationships. Take care of them. We’re not perfect. We know we can always improve. But people who come back to us, we always try to take care of. For me, I’m happy. I like people to be happy. At bar, I do my best to keep people happy. Pour good beer, talk to people like family or at least very good friend.

I’m a beer lover. I say Mekong is for beer lovers. We welcome beer lovers and create new beer lovers by focusing on great beer. That’s why I have a lot of friends on Facebook. I love Facebook. Anyone can friend me who has come into Mekong. I enjoy happy friend. Make good recommendations, too. Also, good customers and friends who tell other people about our food and beer and how we get to know you. We have great customers out there who visit us all the time and tell others and post on Facebook and Twitter.