John Nance, JD, and Kathleen Bartholomew, RN, MN
Quality and Safety can only be achieved in a hospital to the degree that its Board of Directors possesses a clear and accurate picture of the current culture of safety and delivery of quality care within that organization. Recent research shows, for example, that the CEO, physician or nurse’s perception of patient safety within the hospital varies greatly depending on where they are positioned on the organizational chart.
A Board of Directors cannot make the critical decisions necessary by relying on perceptions. In his book, “A Whole New Brain,” Daniel Pink, (keynote speaker for the National Patient Safety Foundation this year) advocates strongly for the integration of Left and Right brain information in order to gather the most accurate information possible. Quite often, by the time facts and figures (left brain) reach the Board of Directors, they have been filteredreorganized or interpreted by well-intentioned preparers. Yet, statistics only represent half of the storyonly half of the information available. A Board’s effectiveness is strictly dependent on whether or not it receives the total picture. Stories from physicians and nurses on the front line often provide an invaluable source of right-brain information that is illuminating to Board members.
Through a proven method of gathering accurate information, Bartholomew and Nance collect data from nurses and physicians from a fresh perspective, and then analyze and summarize results. Bartholomew and Nance shine at painting a clear and accurate picture of your current hospital culture. As the aviation analyst for ABC and author of 19 books, Nance had spent the last nine years speaking to physicians all across the country about the application of aviation principles to medicine. His urgent message to physicians is to be leaders, not commanders. Physicians respond well to his call to action; to his very accurate observation that they carry a great deal of power within hospitals and are able as a group to lead systemic change.
A well-known (but often over-looked) business mantra is “culture kills the best of strategies.” Bartholomew is a national expert in physician-nurse and nurse-nurse relationships. The author of three books on the subject and a national speaker for seven years, she motivates healthcare leaders to harness the maximum amount of power within organizations and understand the strengths and weaknesses of their particular culture within the larger healthcare context.