The industry 5 healthcare execs aim to become more like

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The healthcare industry is unique, from the patient care to economic aspects.

However, there are lessons health system executives learn from other industries, including airlines, restaurants and big tech. Here are five healthcare leaders describing the company or industry they most aspire to emulate in the future.

Q: If you could make your hospital or health system more like one other company or industry, what would it be?

Kimberly Russo. CEO of George Washington University Hospital (Washington, D.C.): At GW Hospital, we strive consistently to deliver more tomorrow than we do today. Given the constant focus we have on pioneering innovative methods and reaching new heights, I would compare the academic healthcare industry and our hospital to that of the aerospace industry. Similar to space exploration, we are always looking for new ways to push beyond current boundaries and venture where others have not been before, in the interest of benefiting mankind.

Victor Giovanetti. Executive Vice President of Hospital Operations at LifePoint Health (Brentwood, Tenn.): At LifePoint Health, ensuring high quality care and patient safety is our top priority. We often look to the aviation industry for inspiration when it comes to safety, in particular, because the pilots and flight crew must adhere to strict safety protocols. There are many standard safety checks that take place before, during and after each flight, which is a primary reason that air travel is the safest mode of transportation today.

Importantly, the safety checks and protocols are completely hardwired into the daily routines of airline staff members, and there are clear expectations and responsibilities associated with each person's role. This consistent discipline and accountability is imperative to keeping travelers safe, and it has been proven to work time and time again.

From our perspective, healthcare can learn a lot from aviation, particularly when it comes to implementing quality and safety practices in such a way that they become automatic and deeply embedded in the daily work of providers and clinical staff. This is a key component of becoming a highly reliable organization.

Matthew Fenty. Director of Partnerships and Strategic Alliances at St. Luke's University Health Network (Bethlehem, Pa.): There are bits and pieces of other industries where I wish we would act more like, but no one in particular. All of our 15,000-plus employees, from surgeons to environmental services to IT, are focused on one mission: to provide excellent patient care where our patients need it the most. Other industries might move faster or take bigger risks, but we can't forget that if we break things or fail, there are serious consequences.

Mike Cottle. IS Director of Newton (Kan.) Medical Center: Chick-fil-A. Their customer service culture is unparalleled by any industry. In healthcare patient safety and customer service are paramount. In healthcare technology we have the opportunity to affect both of these domains significantly. Finding a way to emulate their model and apply it to our environment would be a great boon.

David Jacofsky, MD. Founder of The CORE Institute and HOPCo (Phoenix): There are aspects of Amazon that serve a model for efficient healthcare delivery. In one stop, you have complete pricing transparency, and complete quality transparency (in their reviews), so the consumer can determine the value of a given product or service. In order to bend the cost curve of healthcare delivery, we owe it to patients to be more transparent about the costs and quality of our services, and how that compares to competitors who may, in fact, be charging high prices while delivering poorer outcomes.

Join us for the Becker's Hospital Review 3rd Annual Health IT + Clinical Leadership + Pharmacy Conference, May 19-21, 2020 in Chicago. Topics include artificial intelligence, telehealth, data analytics, clinician burnout, population health, pharmaceutical care and more. Learn more and register here. For more information about exhibitor and sponsorship opportunities, contact Maggie Dunne at


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