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St. Joseph's Hospital Health Center

Advancing Excellence

Mar 31 2014
Rounding: Seeing through Different Lenses
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The typical week these days includes too much email, lots of  mail and many calls. All things that while important, only allow you to see through very limited lenses and keeps us behind a desk. We have learned over the years from following the work of Quint Studer how important rounding is to leaders and to the organization. I took a few hours this past weekend to come in on a Saturday afternoon to do rounding.

I spoke to several  families, asked nurses and housekeepers lots of questions about how they do things and who they call with concerns, and looked for safety and environmental issues.What I found is lots of very pleased families who made comments about the great care people received in the ED, OR and on the floors. "Where do you find these great nurses?" was repeated more than once! The facility looked wonderful, sparkling floors and no boxes in the halls!

There were a few problems I observed, including doors propped open that needed to be closed, and a few things in places they did not belong. I found a few people smoking in places they can no longer smoke due to a new state law that prohibits smoking anywhere on a hospital campus.All these things required me to do something about them, including calling a supervisor, saying something to the person in the wrong area, or sending a note to the head of facilities. I asked myself why didn't someone else correct? How do we all act like owners and speak up when we see something out of place or treatment that we know is just not right?

It's hard. Sometimes people are not happy with the questions or comments I raise to them, particularly smoking, but I do it because I care about our patients and our employees. It's often more comfortable to just walk by and ignore, but we can't. Medicare also has very specific conditions they expect us to uphold to participate in receiving reimbursement. For example, there is a Patients Bill of Rights

Clearly not everyone is comfortable confronting a problem to a person and that's understandable. So pick up a phone or send an email to a supervisor, head of a department, security, or corporate compliance, even my office! Our patients and your colleagues need you to be an advocate. I love it when an employee takes the time share an idea about improvement. Thanks for all you do every day across our organization to be passionate about patient care. Watch the environment, look for quality and safety issues and act.


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