It’s that time of year again. A new year is upon us. It’s resolution time.
I must admit, somewhat sheepishly, that I am a bit of “resolver.” What can I say? I like to resolve. I like to think about resolutions. I like to plan resolutions. I like to regale my uninterested wife with my resolutions. And I am, in fact, actually quite good at all phases of resolving, with one small exception—the follow-through.
You see, while I love to plan changes in my life, I’m horrible at making changes in my life. There’s nothing too shocking about that, I suppose. Most people fail when change is required. What is interesting, though, is that years of failure have yet to imbue me with the sense to stop resolving. I mean, how many times can a man fail at resolutions before he stumbles upon a resolution to stop resolving—a resolution I’d surely fail at?
But what are perhaps even more interesting are the things I’ve apparently resolved to do. I say “apparently” because not only do I typically not remember making the resolutions, but most often I also can’t even fathom why I’d resolve such things in the first place. But clearly I do. In fact, every year, I commit to about 10-20 resolutions. I actually write them down, threaten to make my wife read them, then stow them safely in my desk drawer, only to unearth them a year later to discover that I actually resolved to write a children’s book. True story; I just reviewed my resolutions from last year. I don’t remember why I put that on the list. But I did. And, of course, I failed—but I did, in fact, read a children’s book. Maybe that’s what I meant.
Over the years I’ve also resolved to make a hole-in-one, get better hair, and read War and Peace (on the toilet, during medical school). Fail, fail, and fail. The last one’s a great example of good intentions and no follow-through. Driven by the numerology (1,296 pages+1,296 days of medical school, excluding the last semester, of course, as most of us did=one page per day!) and the symbolism (medical school+grueling+war=challenging, long, grueling book about war) of the goal, I was ultimately undone by an inability to reliably differentiate a Bezukhov from a Bolkonsky, and constipation.
I bring this all up because it is time again for New Year’s resolutions. So here, in no particular order, are my 2012 resolutions.
Oh, That’s How Full Feels!
In 2012, I resolve to finally have a fully staffed HM group. From our group’s origins in 2003 to our current 30-member group, we have been intermittently understaffed to various degrees—a feeling I know most of you have experienced. For a couple of years we were fully staffed, but recent hospital expansions again place us at risk of being understaffed. As most of you know, it is exceedingly difficult to move the clinical, quality, and efficiency goals of a group forward without enough boots on the ground. So, if you’re in the market, the skiing in Colorado can’t be beat!
I resolve to position our hospitalist group for the coming value-based purchasing world. We all know that the future belongs to those who can provide fundamental value—that is, higher-quality care at lower cost. This has been HM’s mantra the past decade. 2012 is the year I resolve to see our group fully realize this.