Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Sorting Out the Fear From the Facts

From the U.S. Supreme Court to the campaign trail, to the coffee shop, and just about anywhere else, Americans are talking about healthcare.

It is true that healthcare is changing, but healthcare is always expanding and changing. Healthcare is anything but static. New advances in technology, diagnostics, and treatment options are being developed every day. It's a large part of our business to be on top of changing trends in healthcare, even if the waters are especially murky these days.

And, fortunately, we're being trendsetters ourselves at GRMC. We knew this day would come - when our focus on excellent patient experience and outcome would be rewarded. Medicare is now carefully tracking patient satisfaction scores across the country and providing hospitals the opportunity to earn back additional reimbursement based on patient satisfaction surveys. So far, we are meeting those high standards very well. Medicare wants to pay for performance and outcomes rather than just paying for services. These are standards we have been working on all along at GRMC.

Our work in preventive medicine was rather unheard of in hospitals our size when we started these programs 15 years ago. Today, we know that working to stay healthy in the first place and preventing many health issues will help keep healthcare costs down. That's why we offer yoga, Spinning, and fitness programs for seniors and children. Yes, we are working to keep people OUT of the hospital as much as we can. Today, Medicare is also rewarding hospitals for preventing unnecessary hospital readmissions. Every hospital working with patients who use Medicare is working hard to make sure that patients with chronic diseases can live well to stay out of the hospital as much as possible.

At GRMC, we care for our neighbors, friends, and family with the best we can give to every patient, every single day. We frequently hear stories from those who have appreciated the professional and compassionate care they or their loved ones receive at GRMC. Patients rate GRMC highly and we work tirelessly to earn that level of trust and satisfaction. Hand in hand with providing the highest clinical quality healthcare possible, we also ask ourselves, "What can we do to ensure that every patient feels they have had the best possible experience at GRMC?"

Even though the national discussion surrounding the future of healthcare is full of unknowns, you can trust that GRMC is working hard to be the hospital here for you when you need us. If you have specific questions about healthcare reform and how it may apply to GRMC, please feel free to contact me. It's important to me to have these kinds of conversations with you about this subject or other concerns you may have.

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