Round and Round We Go
Today I want to give you an update on Leadership Rounds. I've written about this activity a couple of times. Part of our clinical quality improvement efforts, it's a monthly gathering in which more than 100 leaders fan out in small groups across the organization to check in with staff.
When it began about 18 months ago, Leadership Rounds was on the first Tuesday of each month and was limited to the hospitals. Since then, we've added night and weekend rounds and extended the coverage to ambulatory areas and even to the shuttle buses during peak commute times.
Even in the wee hours of the morning, we've had strong participation from our leaders, who include everyone from chairs of clinical departments to deans to business administrators.
Through my own experience I can confirm that Leadership Rounds has turned into one of our very best forms of communication. As time has passed, staff have become more and more comfortable opening up and sharing their thoughts and experiences.
Key questions we want to answer during these excursions: What are the things that may be getting in the way of you doing your job? How can we enhance your experience and, by extension, the experience of our patients?
As much as anyone else who participates in these rounds, I am acutely aware that we have to be relevant to staff members. We're intruding on your day, and in some cases at the very start of your day. If you tell us about an issue that needs attention, then it's critical that we are responsive within a reasonable amount of time and that change happens.
That's why I'm so encouraged that we are seeing progress in a number of areas that are frequently mentioned by staff as concerns. They include:
- Enhanced security presence in vulnerable areas on the main campus and its perimeter. These measures include placement of panic buttons and security officers in clinical areas.
- More housekeeping support at peak times to speed up room turnover. For example, a new discharge operations manager is overseeing the patient discharge process and new employees have been added to clean discharged patient rooms during busy periods.
- Better support for distribution of supplies and linens, particularly during weekends.
- Improved clinical coverage, especially during non-peak times, to make sure patients receive tests and procedures in a timely manner.