EMERGING LEADERSHIP STRATEGIES

BY PRESIDENT & CEO DR. STEVEN A. ESTRINE

 

“Leaders must make investments to enhance the individual’s transformative experience by providing personalized, high-touch, transparent and technologically advanced care, as CEOs report that clients’ evolving behaviors related to virtual care experiences and expectations for convenience are driving organizational change and technological enhancement.”

 

Several weeks ago, I discussed the need for strategic, tactical, and technical actions within behavioral health and social service organizations (insert hyperlink to Part 1 of Steve’s message). This week, I want to expand the discussion to the topic of emerging leadership strategies you may find helpful as you navigate the daunting challenges brought to light during the pandemic.  

A new look at positioning healthcare organizations for future sustainability, even in today’s uncertain environment, is critical. We believe a combination of measured and targeted planning coupled with an innovative vision will allow for future success for organizations. Today’s disruptions demand leaders who are willing to take intelligent risks to move the needle in response to client-demand for exceptional, increasingly personalized care. Sustainable implementations of innovative client-oriented strategies are possible, provided that leaders aggressively embrace this element of uncertainty with responsive data-supported solutions. 

To achieve sustainability, the ability for providers and healthcare systems to enhance quality of life and improve well-being in a population at present without compromising or impeding long term goals, we believe innovative behavioral health leaders should focus on several key areas and move away from a “bean counter” approach to patient care, a concept originally nurtured by the need to enroll patients vigorously into specific licensed reimbursable services in order to cover the provider’s expense of care provision.

To counter this, we support the establishment of quality data dashboards leading to real-time, actionable measurement of patient care and provider service effectiveness, followed by the strengthening of personalized, integrated care delivery systems so that patients and families can eventually access services through a single point of entry. 

Not only will this strengthen the need for revenue cycle management, it will also provide impetus for a variety of bundled payment systems to come into focus in order to most effectively capture the financial support needed for treatment of patients with comorbid issues. 

To change this environment, clients and funders now require increased transparency regarding the cost and quality of care, and technology that improves timely access, whether in-person or through an online interaction between the patient and caretaker. Most fundamentally, patients seek interactive experiences with the behavioral health agencies that dignify each individual client, making her/him/them more than a number to generate revenue.

Leaders must make investments to enhance the individual’s transformative experience by providing personalized, high-touch, transparent and technologically advanced care, as CEOs report that clients’ evolving behaviors related to virtual care experiences and expectations for convenience are driving organizational change and technological enhancement. 

For staff to provide comprehensive integrated care, there is a need to understand social determinants of health and how these variables affect patient care outcomes. To remain competitive, organizations must commit to transforming their traditional methods of care engagement and delivery of service, while providing distinctly more patient-focused experiences for their clients. 

To achieve this transformation, we believe organizations must have a blueprint for creating and sustaining change through a Performance-Based Model. This model is not a linear one-and-done progression, but rather a nonstop cycle that drives and monitors alignment, accountability, and reliable execution throughout the organization. With this focus, strategic plans can be operationalized to create concrete and actionable implementation plans throughout an organization through the formation of both population-specific data sets reflecting population-specific characteristics and care outcomes and through the formation of data sets that accurately capture the spectrum of behavioral health and resiliency services offered by agency staff and partner agencies.

Another key to this process is the commitment to patient involvement in the planning, implementation and evaluation of behavioral health services. Allowing and encouraging a committee of consumers to share their experiences with the agency’s evaluation staff will identify barriers to timely access to services and provide potential solutions to the process of agency transformation. 

In the end, this interactive process will lead to improved patient care at less cost.