The NMHC Operating Model: Benefitting Patients and Physicians
November 5, 2018 | 5 min. to read
Northwestern Medicine is the shared strategic vision of Northwestern Memorial HealthCare and Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine to transform the future of health care and become one of the nation’s premier destinations for patient care. We aim to be a premier, integrated academic health system where patients come first.
To that end, we have established a 10-year strategic plan with three top strategic goals we are striving to reach by 2020:
Deliver exceptional care by providing the highest quality, most effective and safest care while exceeding expectations for access, care coordination and service.
Advance medical science and knowledge through discovery, translation and dissemination of knowledge.
Develop people, culture and resources to foster a culture that values innovation; recruits and develops world-class talent in health care, medical education and research; and utilizes best practices to achieve new levels of collaboration, management and productivity.
To achieve our mission, vision and goals, NMHC is built on the operating model RREG, which stands for Relationships, Reliability, Efficiency and Growth. We track our performance in these areas with monthly NM Scorecards.
Relationships are critical in health care. Patients, employees and physicians all want to be seen, heard and valued. That is why we work so hard on Patient Engagement, Employee Engagement and Physician Engagement initiatives.
Patient Engagement. NMHC maintains a systemwide Patient Engagement team that oversees initiatives and tracks performance across the system. Additionally, we have Patient Engagement team members within each region.
Employee Engagement. We understand that our success hinges on having a well-trained workforce dedicated to our Patients First mission. We attract, and keep, excellent employees through a range of initiatives, such as town hall meetings, surveys, goals and incentives, and career advancement opportunities. We work hard to recognize employee achievements and encourage educational pursuits.
Physician Engagement. We strive to provide physicians with the support and resources they need to provide excellent patient care every day, including access to the most advanced equipment and support from a highly competent clinical staff. We want to create a health system where physicians are professionally satisfied and well served. We do understand that many forces in health care place greater demands on physicians, so our journey must address those challenges. We also try to ensure that physicians are served through educational offerings. Grand Rounds events and research opportunities will help keep you on the leading edge of health care, and a variety of committee service opportunities ensure your voice is heard.
We monitor our performance in the area of Relationships by striving to achieve top-decile performance in:
Inpatient Likelihood to Recommend (LTR)
We also track additional areas like Ambulatory Surgery LTR, Emergency Department LTR and Hospital Outpatient LTR.
As healthcare providers, we must deliver care and services that are safe, effective and timely. We have instituted safety initiatives, such as Safety Always , that have positively impacted the number of Serious Safety Events. Daily Safety Huddles give representatives from across the system the opportunity to elevate and address concerns that impact reliability. Our involvement in leading-edge research and our access to the most advanced treatment enables NMHC physicians to deliver the most effective care. And our Nurse Navigator programs help ensure patients receive the care they need, when they need it.
We monitor performance in Reliability through the following measures:
Patient Safety: Serious Safety Event Closure Rate
Patient Safety: Infections
Effective Care: Mortality
Effective Care: 30-Day Unplanned Readmissions
Effective Care: Achieve 4-Star CMS Ratings at All Hospitals
Efficiency Being part of a health system brings with it financial advantages that allow us to operate with increased efficiency. A larger system brings with it more shared resources, saving our patients and our organization time and money. For example, the recent move by Kishwaukee Hospital and Valley West Hospital to begin sending specimens to HealthLab rather than Mayo Medical Laboratories in Minnesota is saving both time and money, and their physicians and patients are now able to get same-day or next-day results. We monitor performance in Efficiency by looking at:
Net Operating Income (goal to achieve targets outlined in our Long-Range Financial Plan)
Net Operating Cash Flow (goal to achieve targets outlined in LRFP)
Maintenance of Aa2/AA bond rating
Growth When we effectively address Relationships, Reliability and Efficiency, we exceed patient expectations, leading to Growth. That growth comes in many forms:
A larger patient population
Expansion of existing facilities
Additional staff and physicians
Affiliation with new organizations
As long as we remain rooted in the R-R-E, the G will continue to benefit everyone within NMHC and the communities we serve.
James Adams, MD Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, Northwestern Memorial HealthCare
Our goal is to make sure the content in Physician Focus is engaging and relevant for all NMHC physicians. If you have questions, comments or ideas for upcoming issues, please contact your CMO:
Mark Daniels, MD Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Northwestern Medicine Delnor Hospital Iran Hafiz, MD Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Northwestern Medicine Northwest Region
Jeffrey Kopin, MD Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Northwestern Medicine North Region
Michael Kulisz, Jr., DO Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Kishwaukee Hospital and Valley West Hospital
Kevin Most, DO Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Northwestern Medicine Central DuPage Hospital Marianjoy Rehabilitation Hospital
Gary A. Noskin, MD Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Northwestern Memorial Hospital
Phillip E. Roemer, MD Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Northwestern Medical Group