This week’s article in Modern Healthcare talks about the emerging phenomenon of medical tourism (also known as medical travel and medical outsourcing). As with most articles, the conversation focused on the huge cost savings for folks who choose to travel abroad for medical treatment.
For example, a recent McKinsey report found that an aortic valve replacement that costs $100,000 at a U.S. hospital would run about $12,000 at an equally qualified and credentialed hospital in Asia. Wow! But how do you know if you can trust these hospitals from a quality of care perspective?
I’m a big fan of choosing hospitals that can demonstrate their quality of care. So, in addition to making sure that the hospital is accredited by the Joint Commission International (JCI) and International Standards Organization (ISO), look for the hospital that openly and transparently reports its clinical outcomes.
For example, take a look at National University Hospital. It’s a good start, though not comparative and somewhat complicated for the uninformed reader. Do your research by comparing those outcomes to your American counterparts. And if the clinical indicators are not posted on the Web site – ask!
“A new survey suggests that CEOs are rethinking the importance of improving the patient experience and other studies show that consumerism in healthcare—long talked about—might really be coming after all.” To that, I say, it’s about time!
A week ago, knowing full well that I was two years over due for my annual mammogram (shame on me), I made the “smash-o-gram” appointment. To my surprise, my appointment was 2 days later. Not a week. Not a month. Not 6 months. Only 2 days. Wow! For the past 10 years, I’ve been a fan of Imaging for Women, a privately operated practice independently owned by Mark J. Malley, MD, DABR, a board-certified radiologist. The imaging center offers phenomenal service.
Here’s what I mean by that:
From door to door, my appointment took 28 minutes. I received my results at minute 25 (versus waiting a week for a postcard to arrive in the mail). Now consider this: Let’s say Dr. Malley has a concern about the images. You are ushered back into the mammography suite for another look. If anomalies still appear, your next stop is the ultrasound room just down the hall. And yes, you guessed it – results of the ultrasound are immediately reported. No sleepless nights waiting for results. In fact, BEFORE you ever leave Imaging for Women, Dr. Malley will personally counsel you about your choice of specialist and facilitate the referral should you need a consult for breast surgery.
Now, that’s a great patient experience – isn’t that the way healthcare should be?
Twelve business owners from Vistage Group 3416 (a Kansas City executive leadership group) recently joined for four days in Beaver Creek, CO, for ziplining, rafting, fly fishing and some more serious leadership adventures. It was as much a time to escape from the day-to-day struggles of business ownership as it was a time for a deeper dive into it. Our goal is to become better leaders, make better decisions and achieve better results…and achieve better balance in our lives. The retreat gave us insights not only into ourselves, but into our colleagues and how they work, live and play.
So while there’s no “so what” marketing message for today, I did want to encourage you to think about how you can “strategically withdraw” or retreat to take time for yourself. And make it a point to “be present” in the midst of a busy day no matter who you’re with. Make it a priority and part of your personal brand to engage at a deeper level with yourself, your family, friends, staff and business partners. It’s amazing what you learn and what you get back in return.
This August, an estimated 25,000 visitors from across the United States will flood Stanford University and the San Francisco Bay area for one reason: to cheer on the more than 10,000 athletes who will be competing in the 2009 Summer National Senior Games.
The National Senior Games, which is the largest multi-sport event in the world for men and women aged 50 and older, runs from August 1-15. Athletes will compete in 25 Olympic and traditional sports, including swimming, basketball, cycling, track & field, and archery.
The event is sponsored by our client Stanford Hospital and Clinics and their new Outpatient Center. In addition to providing medical care to the athletes and urgent care for spectators during the Games, Stanford will present free lectures and activities to the public. Topics range from maintaining health for active living to achieving peak performance for competitive athletes.
Admission to the Games is free, so if you’re in the area, stop by and cheer on these inspiring men and women! They are a great reminder for us all to celebrate health and fitness at any age.
Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital marks yet another Dobies client that has been named one of the nation’s best children’s hospitals for 2009 by U.S. News Media Group. Lucile Packard placed within the top 20 in eight specialties; 160 hospitals were considered. The specialties receiving top rankings are:
#5 – Heart and Heart Surgery including tetralogy of fallot surgery and pediatric heart transplant
#5 - Neonatal Care
#11 – Cancer including pediatric leukemia, pediatric Hodgkin’s disease and bone marrow transplant
#14 – Diabetes and Endocrine Disorders
#14 – Digestive Disorders
#15 – Respiratory Disorders including pediatric cystic fibrosis and childhood asthma
#20 – Kidney Disorders
#20 – Neurology and Neurosurgery
The rankings will be featured in the August issue of U.S. News & World Report.
About Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital:
Associated with the Stanford University School of Medicine, Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital in Palo Alto, Calif., provides a full range of medical and surgical services to children and expectant mothers from all over the United States. For more information, visit www.lpch.org.