It’s Not About The Box Improving Care at Group Health with People, Process and Technology

October 15, 2012

The Care Management Institute Annual Meeting

Filed under: Uncategorized — Matt Handley @ 3:02 pm

Kaiser’s Care Management Institute (CMI) is a remarkable organization – the engine for identifying/developing clinical content for spread across all of the KP regions – and Group Health gets to participate.  I am very lucky to have been a participant at the founding of CMI 15 years ago, and the organization continues to evolve and improve.

Jack Cochrane’s starts with a summary of the accomplishments of KP and GH – tops in Medicare and commercial, and learning how to improve faster and faster.  But excellence isn’t enough – we need to deliver those outcomes (or even better outcomes) at a lower price, if our society is to continue to excel.  We need an inflection point – away from “bending the cost curve” to lowering the cost of care.  How can we get there?

And then a pivot to a really revealing story.  I had not heard this one before – the 9-11 commission, trying to explain how so many smart people in different three letter acronyms (CIA/FBI/FAA, etc) allowed the events of 9-11 to happen – turned to health care.  The analogy they used is a group of specialists in a hospital – all well intended, but the right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing.  Seriously.  It is in the report.  When they needed an analogy for a disorganized effort that fails to achieve the desired outcome despite people being quite smart – they use healthcare.  But we don’t need to spend more time on blame-storming – we need to turn to solutions.

We need to be learning organizations – we need to learn and spread faster.  And that means learning from others also.  We need to work less on defending how things are and look to more transformative ideas.  It can be argued that the biggest thing that KP has strategically is a lead.  Smart people are about to adapt away from the fee for service model – there will be darwinian winners that are just as good at reimbursement for value as they were at fee for service.  If we don’t accelerate our own work we will be following shortly.  We need to be the conveners of innovators, with leaders resolved to help us evolve to new models of care.

Pretty cool to hear his words, feel his commitment and passion, in a room filled with the people who will lead us in the coming years.

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