Tag Archives: Business

The Next Wave

I was traveling recently and, as I typically do, I bought a copy of Fast Company magazine to read on the plane. I don’t subscribe, but I find that it often has interesting articles on the intersection of technology and business. In the July/August issue, there was an article about GE and its CEO Jeff Immelt that I think has important parallels with the current transformation of healthcare delivery. Continue reading The Next Wave

Providers in the Insurance Game

I have come to believe that fee for service (FFS), at least in its current incarnation, is an unsustainable model of financing health care. Pick up any newspaper or journal and you are likely to see that I am not alone. The reasons are as numerous as the faults of the present health care landscape – high costs, poor quality of care, unhappy patients, and unhappy providers. Continue reading Providers in the Insurance Game

Raising Daughters

I have always thought that I have learned more from raising two kids with my wife than I have from anything else I have ever done, including the study and practice of medicine. I suspect that many parents feel the same way, since it is pretty common for people to speak of the transformative impact of parenting.

A lot of my lessons have been generic – what really matters to me, what it means to take responsibility – but as my children have grown, I have also learned some very specific lessons. One such important lesson I attribute entirely to having daughters, and to having grown up in a household with a brother and no sisters. I have learned about what it means to grow up female. And as my children have become adults, I continue to learn about what it means to be female in our society and in the workplace. Continue reading Raising Daughters

Physician Leadership

I had the privilege recently of teaching a course on “physician leadership” as part of the North Shore –LIJ “Physicians High Potentials” program. For those of you who are not familiar with the program, it provides training and coaching for physicians in the health system to enable them to take on formal leadership roles, and covers topics as diverse as how one’s own personality affects communication with others and health care financing.

At the start of the session (which I taught with Dr. Vicki LoPachin), I tried to give a brief overview of why physician leadership is so important, and why I believe it is an extension of the more traditional “healer” role of physician. My argument, which drew heavily from the work of Richard Bohmer, went something like this:

Physicians have always felt a keen professional obligation to improve the health of their patients. In the current parlance, we have always tried to improve patients’ outcomes. For most of recorded history – indeed until recent decades, physicians practiced mostly as independent craftsmen (and yes, they were almost always men) with a general ignorance of causes of disease and limited therapeutic options. Patient outcomes, to the extent that they could be improved, depended on what we knew and what we did to and for patients. Continue reading Physician Leadership