Dr. Harrison said he wants to explain to hospitalists how Intermountain Healthcare is positioning itself to be sustainable in the future.
“I’ll talk specifically about how hospitalists are positioned to impact health care delivery,” he said. “At Intermountain Healthcare, we have recently restructured in two streams of businesses: Specialty-based care, which is our hospital-type services and specialist services providing high-level acuity care, and community-based care, which is really the services that are designed to keep people healthy and out of our hospitals as much as possible.”
According to Dr. Harrison, hospitalists at Intermountain Healthcare “live right at that intersection of those two streams of care, so they’re uniquely positioned to influence both health care quality and the cost of health care, as well as keeping people healthy.”
He hopes HM19 attendees will leave his keynote with an understanding of the need to be proactive and responsive in this new health care environment.
“They’re going to have to be courageous, bold, and agile to change,” Dr. Harrison said. “They need to always be thinking about how to create more value for their patients, including the experience that they provide not only for patients but among colleagues within their group, and then within their health system.”
The need to transform with the challenging environment we’re in is just one part, he added. “You’ve got to take that philosophy and apply it to the budget constraints that health care systems are facing. You have to implement a model that allows front-line caregivers to contribute their best thinking and their best ideas so that the whole system can progress forward together. Those who are closest to the work on the front lines can contribute to innovation, but they have to be realistic – considering their budget restraints and the pressures that they’re facing.”
The key for Dr. Harrison is that there really is a need for change and that, in the country as a whole, there exist perverse incentives that make it easy to not do the right thing.
“We need to totally rethink the way that we look at health care so that the focus is keeping people well, only doing those things that add value so that care can become affordable,” Dr. Harrison said. “One of the things that voters said when they came out of the polls in November 2018 was that they were concerned about the cost of health care. For those of us working in health care to ignore that is just wrong – it’s something that we need to pay attention to and do something about.”
Influencing Lives Earlier, More Effectively and More Affordably
Marc Harrison, MD
Monday, 8:40 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.