Question: Our hospital and MEC members just won summary judgment upholding denial of reappointment to a physician whose behavior was disruptive for years. This has consumed everyone’s attention for too long. Our new Vice Chief of Staff suggests developing a Physician-Hospital Compact based on his experience at another hospital. Could this help put this all behind us?
Answer: Many hospitals and physicians have found that the process of working together on developing a Compact has helped the board, management team, physician leaders, and both independent and employed physicians develop better lines of communication and prepare them for the dramatic changes facing organizations today. Litigation such as you have experienced may not feel much like a victory after years in court. A Compact can build on the hospital’s mission, vision and values statement to provide a framework for the future, in terms of principles of appropriate behavior that all applicants for appointment and reappointment would sign. That may help avoid this kind of litigation but, more importantly, foster trust and commitment to common goals.
We think that a carefully crafted Compact is a worthwhile idea, and can help focus efforts to improve care for patients and also improve the process of providing care. A successful Compact must include not just Guiding Principles, but also Action Steps to make them happen.
Join senior partners Linda Haddad and Barbara Blackmond as they discuss the benefits of a Compact, and how to develop one that yields measurable results, at our audio conference on May 22, 2012.