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Hank Spring 2015

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From the Desk of Henrietta: Proudly Found Elsewhere

Mother holding her baby, with a nurse in the background

Is delivering a baby in Portland that different from delivering one in Denver? Probably not. That's why frontline teams can and should learn successful practices from each other. 

Our Value Compass puts the patient at the center. But—which patient do we mean?

If you are, say, a registered nurse on a telemetry unit, do you mean just your specific patient? Or all the patients in your department? Or at your whole facility? In your region?

What would happen if you took the One KP strategy to heart and considered every patient at every Kaiser Permanente facility your patient?

In this issue of Hank, you’ll find ways to do just that. How? By sharing your own department’s successful practices—and by learning from your colleagues’ triumphs in improving care.

Let’s face it: As at every large organization, there are silos and turf at KP, with attendant rivalries among departments, facilities and regions. That sense of competition on everything from service scores to attendance to membership growth can make it seem like quality is a zero-sum game—that my improvement must come at your expense.

As at other institutions, there’s also a bias against anything “not invented here.” How many times have you heard, “But that won’t work here. We’re—different.” Really? Is the birth of a baby so different in Oakland than in Portland? Is filling a prescription for statins so different in Atlanta than in Denver? Or could the same approaches to improving service and quality work regardless of location?

As an antidote to “not invented here,” try “proudly found elsewhere.” Open your mind, eyes, heart and—yes—ego to improvements from outside your home base. When you view every KP patient as yours, you won’t hesitate to spread what you’ve learned to others and to learn from them in turn.

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