When a health organization’s top leaders get excited about data analytics, you know the C-suite is breaking out of its old habits. And what are they excited about? The numbers that show the correlation between specific measures and improvement in patient outcomes.
Data analytics and the insights they provide require open minds to a new model of achieving outcomes. Some C-suite members are resistant. They prefer the old model based on anecdotal evidence. And that’s too bad because data is in. Expect to see the head IT team member at the next executive meeting.
Data is the way to reshape organizational practices for maximum quality at minimum cost. Often, the organization’s survival depends on it.
The New Healthcare Leader Is Data Savvy
But it’s especially important for healthcare leadership to understand data determinations, analyze the metrics, set benchmarks to a specific goal, and take appropriate action, given the data, to achieve the changes they seek: improved safety and great efficiency, for example. Then, they must keep tabs on the progress.
The modern team of chiefs worries about data security, patient satisfaction, cost efficiency, and population management in the healthcare system, all data-driven solutions.
Analytics are especially important in the growing fee for value reimbursement model for physicians and health organizations, where patient outcomes and satisfaction as well as efficiency are critical to survival. Everyone from the C-suite down are expected to produce more for less—satisfaction, that is, for less money. Or risk lower reimbursement levels and low patient ratings on public sites.
Welcome to the New Kids on the Block
In fact, a new C, the Chief Experience Officer (CXO), is now an integral part of 58% of health organizations surveyed by The Beryl Institute in 2017. The CXO oversees the quality, efficiency, and empathy of an organization, which entails superior communication and connection as foundational to building and maintaining trust and respect between health care providers and their patients and families. The CXO is in charge of ensuring the human quality exists throughout an organization in everything and everyone down the chain from provider to patient.
The CXO’s job also requires understanding the data enough to translate and communicate it into action—and what technology works best for patients’ experience of healthcare in the daily lives as well as in extraordinary circumstances. For example, convenient patient access through telemedicine, EHR’s, text messages, and virtual visits allows patients to feel more connected to their doctors and less frustrated with the health care system overall.
Patient satisfaction surveys data are also within the purview of the CXO. Communicating that data to medical staff and implementing plans in response to those surveys, the CXO coordinates data, satisfaction, safety, quality, and cost to optimize patient and employee satisfaction for the benefit of the whole operation.
The Ever Expanding C-suite Is Data Driven.
As data storage and security become increasingly important, the Chief Data Officer (CDO) fills a seat in the healthcare C-Suite. In fact, 57% of healthcare organizations have CDO’s. They manage data and leverage analytic tools. Similarly, Chief Health Information Officers (CHIO) hones the data for patient outcomes.
Other officers, like the Chief Medical Information Officer (CMIO) and the Chief Nurse Information Officer (CNIO) coordinate medicine and IT to drive outcomes. And the quality and safety chiefs responsible for patient experience are the Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) and Chief Transformation Officer (CTO), who, of course, work with the CXO. They oversee standard of care.
Industry, innovation, medicine, IT, and business combine in these C titles to make hospitals and other large healthcare organizations run smoothly as a vital service and business. They need to navigate the tricky waters of data breaches, financial penalties for poor patient experience, and overall efficiency for viability.
So, more than 40 years ago, the C-suite was the CEO, and a little later, the CFO and the CEO. Later, marketing and strategy officers came into the fold. The C-suite transformed in many businesses, including healthcare. But the CDO will be the mainstay of the suites of the future—in healthcare and everywhere. That’s because harnessing data is the key to most organizations’ survival.