Friday, August 07 | Thought Leadership, Post-Acute Care

Post-Acute Leaders Embrace Change to Combat COVID-19

By Netsmart

As COVID-19 continues to disrupt care in the post-acute industry, leaders approach change as an ally, not an adversary. 

 

To further the conversation around organizational adaptation, Netsmart hosted the CEO Post-Acute ExecCONNECT, a shared conversation that demonstrated the resilience and persistence of the post-acute community. 

 

Below are highlights exploring how executives are embracing change to combat COVID-19. 

 

Change in the face of challenge

 

As Covid-19 continues to impact healthcare facilities, David Ellis, founder of Lincoln Healthcare, argued that senior living organizations must revisit their values, must review and reimagine operations and processes to fit the needs of the current climate. 

 

Ellis urged organizations to be exceptionally communal within the facility. This can be done through re-engineering how residents dine, socialize, exercise and even empathize. This communal attitude by no means suggests decreasing safety measures, but rather implies the need for increased interaction in a time when isolation is on the rise as a consequence of necessary safety measures. “Safe and communal will win over competitors,” said Ellis. 

 

Ellis also advocated for a complete adoption of virtual care to mitigate infection spread and to ensure better care for residents. During an organization’s inaugural days, virtual care was, most likely, not a necessity. Today, virtual care can aid in coordination of healthcare, narrow the network of external providers and help your residents navigate the healthcare system. 

 

Above all, Ellis advocated for the embrace of change. As consumer preferences and societal attitudes evolve, so must organizational offerings and approaches. Ellis enumerated the possible sectors for change, including business models, pricing models, and staff changes, reminding viewers to “be ready to dance on your toes and change quickly.” 

 

Challenges today shape tomorrow’s terrain

 

For John Cochrane, CEO & President of HumanGood, it rapidly became apparent that his organization needed to innovate to combat COVID-19. This innovation, however, was not a singular effort, but rather a sustained drive, one with long-reaching implications for the organization as a whole. 

 

At HumanGood, success in the face of the unique challenges of COVID-19 was going to rely on “gathering, understanding and responding to data,” said Cochrane. While data strategies have long been an industry conversation topic, at HumanGood, the advent of COVID-19 accelerated implementation of this long-discussed need. 

 

With the Netsmart COVID-19 Mobile Screening Solution, HumanGood gained real-time visibility of specific sectors within individual communities. With this sophisticated technology, the organization can identify where and when to deploy resources, as well as track personal protective equipment (PPE) need and usage. This new access to data has drastically changed the way HumanGood sees their communities from a multitude of perspectives. 

 

In addition to incorporating a data strategy, HumanGood diversified their interdisciplinary leadership team, which allowed for better understanding of PPE, Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines and public health information. With a diverse leadership team, HumanGood was able to distill this information into actionable insights that were then shared in the field. Cochrane noted that this team was much more effective and intuitive than traditional hierarchical leadership structures.

 

While both Lincoln Healthcare and HumanGood reacted rapidly to adjust to the demands that accompanied COVID-19, the organizational and structural changes made are lasting. For both leaders, these adaptations reshaped the way care is delivered at their organizations, ensuring improved visibility and a return to the original tenets of care. 

 

 

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