Guest post by Maureen Ladouceur, vice president, Health Systems Products, Marketing and Services, Quantia, Inc.Maureen Ladouceur
According to a recent Physicians Foundation survey, 82 percent of physicians believe they have “little influence on the direction of healthcare.” At the same time, data suggests that physicians are the ones driving 80 percent of our increasingly unsustainable national healthcare spend.
There’s been plenty of speculation on the reasons physicians are feeling so disenfranchised – including their frustration with having to do things that don’t appear, to them, to have anything to do with good medicine. Things like onerous documentation, EHR training and quality report cards are just a few examples. Further, physicians are being asked to learn about marketing, customer service, leadership, management and cost effectiveness that have more to do with taking care of the system than taking care of patients.
In most cases it boils down to this: there’s too little time, too many distractions and too much change to the clinical and administrative guidelines that go along with being a practicing physician.
So how can health systems overcome these very real obstacles and engage their physicians in ways that keep them current and aligned? For starters, any physician engagement strategy has to be digital if it’s going to scale. And to be sustainable, it’s got to be convenient, credible and enjoyable—while giving physicians a voice (and thus, gaining their buy-in) on topics that will impact the future of their practice, their organization and the overall healthcare system.
Health systems looking to engage their physicians in ways that foster ongoing learning and inspire change can leverage a few proven best practices:
Make it convenient
With an estimated half of current medical knowledge becoming obsolete every five years, even the most experienced physician can’t keep up with all the changes in healthcare. Yet many bristle at the idea of spending time away from the office at symposiums, or submitting to onerous exams on content that may or may not be relevant to their practice.