ClickCare Café

Can Leadership Benefit Healthcare Collaboration?

Posted by Lawrence Kerr on Wed, Jan 03, 2018 @ 06:01 AM


The new year is always a time of reflection and taking stock. For us at ClickCare, we’ve taken the opportunity to step back and look at what is most needed in healthcare.

In 2018, we believe one of the things that is most crucially needed in healthcare is: leadership.  As healthcare becomes increasingly volatile, politicized, and competitive, leaders within medicine are needed more now than ever. And in 2018, we look to leadership to advance the cause of collaborative health care.

So we were intrigued to come across a series in the New England Journal of Medicine Catalyst called Lessons in Leadership. Two pieces stood out to us as especially important, and we’re going to look at them in a two-article series this week.

In Transformative Collaboration Across the Care Continuum, Dr. Slocum looks at the profound importance of teams in healthcare (as well as challenges they face). Of course, the role of teams and collaboration in healthcare is increasingly recognized as crucial to improving both care and metrics.

But there are a myriad of challenges to effective collaboration and team-based healthcare. In fact, Dr. Slocum identifies challenges like, “bridg[ing] the divides of geography and discipline” and “making cross-disciplinary collaboration between clinicians and researchers a day-to-day endeavor.” In summary, she said, “Collaborative relationships across settings are critical to optimizing care, yet they are very difficult to achieve.”

While there is a lot of truth to the challenges that exist for teams, we know for sure that it’s certainly not impossible, or even “very difficult” to achieve collaboration and strong teams across settings. Before we started ClickCare, I worked with the Craniofacial Team — an interdisciplinary group of providers, truly across the continuum of care — to collaborate on very complex cases. We got together once a month to discuss our cases and used whatever communication tools we could to collaborate outside of our meetings. The collaboration took a bit of work, sure, but it was easeful and effective.

And now, with iClickCare, we watch our colleagues create strong, agile, effective teams using the simple app to collaborate. It's work that regular providers do, every day. It's true leadership, shown by everyone from aides to super-specialists.

The truth is: we have the technology to collaborate and support our teams.  The next challenge is to develop leaders who are willing and able to:

  • Assert themselves and their ideas without fear of reprisal
  • Create an environment that empowers others to do so as well.
  • Do so in the current hostile environment of 
    Payment distrust (insurance companies, CMS and fraud - real and imagined)

Yes, the technology and innovations (like new programs) are important. We wouldn't have created iClickCare if we didn't think the technology and tools were crucial. But more important than tools are the leaders who use them. And every healthcare provider regardless of your title or training  can be a leader this year, starting today. 


For more stories of everyday leaders and healthcare collaboration, download or free Quick Guide: 

ClickCare Quick Guide to Medical Collaboration

Tags: medical collaboration, collaboration leadership, healthcare collaboration

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