Daily Message

Sept. 23, 2014: Speaker tells N.J. Healthcare Leaders: ‘You Are Right in the Center of the Action’

Marking its 12th year facilitating collaborative efforts to improve quality of care and patient safety throughout the state, NJHA’s Institute for Quality and Patient Safety held its Annual Leadership Summit. More than 125 healthcare professionals participated in thought-provoking discussion with some of the industry’s leading experts.

Dr. Maulik Joshi, president of the American Hospital Association’s Health Research and Educational Trust, kicked off the daylong event, encouraging governing boards, strategists and quality professionals to move the quality and patient safety agenda forward. To achieve a transformational change, Board members must be fully engaged with their executives in pushing quality improvement, he said.

Said Dr. Joshi, “Engage trustees in quality and reducing harm at a level that has never been asked before.”

Others leading presentations included Dr. Tarek Elsawy, chief medical officer at the Cleveland Clinic Community Physician Partnership and Quality Alliance, who shared the organization’s shift toward total cost of care and modeling of care coordination; Dr. James Bonnette, executive vice president from Advisory Board Consulting who discussed the macroeconomic changes in healthcare today; and VeLois Bowers, Christus Health’s vice president of diversity and inclusion, who engaged participants in a dialogue on aligning inclusion efforts with the strategic priorities of the organization.

The featured speaker of the day was Dr. Mark McClellan, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. A former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Dr. McClellan previewed some of the issues to watch in the next phase of open enrollment under the Health Insurance Marketplace. Critical issues include: the performance of the federal Web site; the effectiveness of the federal site’s data sharing with states and plans; whether consumers will re-enroll; and whether increased awareness will attract even more enrollees for 2015 coverage.

Dr. McClellan also explored the monumental changes in healthcare today, all striving to achieve better value in healthcare. He cited New Jersey as a leader in many areas, including the population health efforts in Camden to develop medical homes and the state’s initiative to test Medicaid ACOs.

“You are right in the center of the action in these big national economic questions,” he said.

And he said healthcare providers are in the lead position to effect the needed changes.

“There is so much capital that you all have,” he told today’s attendees. “It’s definitely the strongest foundation for real and effective delivery of healthcare reform.”