Maximizing profits, or at least not operating at a loss, has long been at the forefront of business objectives for the healthcare industry. It’s important, however, for healthcare practitioners to look at just how much risk can or should be taken to reach their objectives. A question that many healthcare organizations are asking themselves is if more healthcare medical errors can be averted by proactive risk management.
It’s important to understand the role of risk management in the healthcare industry, and know where it fits into your operations. Risk management is generally reactive, when it should instead be proactive. Proactive risk management in the healthcare industry may avoid some losses and expenses that could otherwise impact your bottom like.
One problem that healthcare practitioners face when it comes to risk management is how to determine its “value”. How can you quantify what doesn’t happen because it was prevented? The healthcare industry is focused on benchmarking and measurement. So, how can a business case for risk management be made? One method suggested by healthcare professionals is to study the relation between a decrease in malpractice claims and patient relations policies. Collecting this type of data is useful in assessing the value of risk management in the healthcare industry, but it’s also important for leaders in the healthcare industry to increase their visibility when it comes to risk management issues. There are a few ways this can be done:
- Participate in Board of Director meetings and provide education on internal risk management issues, how the issues are being addressed, and industry trends.
- Meet regularly with Senior Leadership to discuss your activities and how your efforts are affecting patient safety and the bottom line.
- Be responsive to your stakeholders’ requests for assistance.
- Make rounds and be a resource so that your staff knows who to come to with risk management concerns.
These are just a few ways to increase your visibility on risk management issues. It’s also a good idea to be active in professional associations and organizations, and follow through on your professional commitments, making it a priority to meet deadlines.
At Sinclair Risk & Financial Management, we can provide your healthcare facility with insurance and Risk Management strategies to protect the financial strength of your operation. We also provide Commercial Insurance coverages for the healthcare industry as well as a variety of other specialty industries. Please contact us for more information at (877) 602-2305.