What else do you do with Episode 1? We explain what the podcast is and who it’s for. We also cover the non-profit track of the JP Morgan Healthcare conference. Lots of interesting insights into what lies ahead from the CEOs of 22 non-profit health systems.
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Bill Russell: 00:11 Welcome to this week in health it where we discussed the news information and emerging thought leaders from across the healthcare industry. This podcast is brought to you by health lyrics. This is episode one. My name is Bill Russell, recovering healthcare cio, writer and consultant with the previously mentioned health lyrics. That’s right. This is episode one. This week we’re going to discuss the podcast itself and take a look at the JP Morgan healthcare conference. So let’s get started. Episode one. I’m reminded of a story actually just a quick side note of a story that the CEO of Geisinger shared at the JP Morgan conference and he was talking about he had a meeting coming up with the great grandson of the first patient, uh, for that health system ever for the, for that house. So many jokes to his admin. How do we even know that this guy was our first patient and she is obviously a very diligent person, maybe a CSI fan.
Bill Russell: 01:14 And she went out and produced his medical record which had the number in the upper left hand corner. You guessed it, zero, zero, zero one. She also produced a picture of the person, I think she was going to meet their father in the arms of the founder, so even even medical record number, it has to start somewhere. It has to start at one, so we will do the same. So we’re launching a podcast. Why do this podcast? Well, the answer that is really founded in a pretty simple answer. I was the cio of a $6,000,000,000 health system in southern California experiencing all the things that a large health system cio has to to handle and has to deal with people. Operations, budgeting, strategy, innovation. Each one of those categories for me had like 20 things underneath it. At one point I was using mind maps to just make sure that I captured all the things I needed to be thinking about or working on and it got to the point where I needed to use a four paper just to print it out and fit it all into one piece of paper.
Bill Russell: 02:27 And the point being that the role of the healthcare cio and the role of the CIO is very busy and as a leader in the technology space, my responsibility was not only to ensure the smooth operation of the health system, prepare for the future, but also to stay current and educate as many people as possible in the organization about what we could be doing with technology, what, what, what could, what were the possibilities on top of, on top of analytics and machine learning and blockchain and all these wild technologies that were out there. How were we going to take them and apply them to healthcare. So the job is broad. There’s a lot going on and, um, and there’s an awful lot of people that you have to bring along on that ride with you. So I created this podcast for you, um, for those of you who are tirelessly working on making healthcare better in all the communities around the world.
Bill Russell: 03:28 Uh, it’s really for the health care executives wanting to know more about it and technologies for the cio who wants to hear from their peers and other leaders in the industry. Uh, hear what they’re saying and what they’re doing is for it staff who want to further their career, maybe get a little inside knowledge, how, how ceos think and, and how things sort of transpire within, within healthcare. And obviously it’s for clinicians and healthcare workers at large who are interested in the world of technology and its impact on healthcare. So that’s why we’re doing it. So let’s talk about what we’re going to do every week following this week. Of course I’m going to invite a healthcare executive to join me on the podcast to discuss the news of the week. We’re going to use the news of the week really as a backdrop for creating a dialogue around the, uh, the things that are relevant, the things that are happening in our industry that are impacting our industry.
Bill Russell: 04:27 And we could talk about things that are a very specific around technology, uh, emerging trends and, and those kinds of things. Or we can talk about leadership. We could talk about a lot of different things just to give you a little taste for, um, if you wanted to learn more about digital transformation, there’s nobody better than David Chow who’s the, uh, is one of the leading voices for digital transformation on twitter and on social media. Uh, and he speaks a fair amount. He’s the CIO at mercy children’s in Kansas City and he will be joining the next week. And I’m really, really excited about that. In fact, David has agreed to be a cohost every four weeks taking into account that he has a full time job. He has agreed to join me every, uh, every four weeks on a Friday for about 30 minutes. It’s just to discuss the news of the day and we will share that conversation with you.
Bill Russell: 05:25 Uh, as another part of this story for me is I came into healthcare and immediately put on about 30 pounds within about 18 months of being named the Cio for a health system. Kind of ironic, but this is my gift to those of you that liked to listen to things while you’re on the elliptical, the treadmill, you want a whole bunch of information sort of compacted so that you can, you can hear what’s going on, get good current and just move on with your day. And that’s what we’re going to be doing every Friday, 30 minute conversation with a healthcare leader. Obviously every four weeks it will be David Chow. I’ve invited some of my other friends and I’m really excited for you to meet them, to hear from them, their dynamic, engaging leaders that are doing some really fascinating things within healthcare. And I hope you’ll come back every week.
Bill Russell: 06:15 Subscribe and, um, and join us. Maybe take us to the gym with you. Okay. So now onto the JP Morgan healthcare conference. The conference itself is held in San Francisco at the Westin St. Regis is a huge event that the JP Morgan portion of it maybe isn’t as huge as the, just what happens in the city of San Francisco. There’s a whole bunch of events that have sort of kicked up, uh, in the, uh, in the area, uh, just around the JP Morgan Conference, so you have innovators meeting with money, people, private equity with venture capital and just all sorts of really interesting dynamic conversations going on. I, of course did not go to the really cool fun conference that you get to where you know, you, you get to dress down, wear your jeans and look real cool. I went to the, the uh, the suit and tie crowd on the 32nd floor of the West and St Regis for a day and a half of the nonprofit track and it is as sexy as it sounds, the nonprofit track.
Bill Russell: 07:28 But I have found that to be a really interesting place to hang out, to learn about what’s going to, what’s going on today within the health systems and what’s going on within the industry and where it is going to be going. So let me, um, again, let me paint the picture a little bit for you. Each, each health systems given about 30 minutes, about 30 minutes. I, that’s, that’s a misnomer. They are giving exactly 30 minutes, it’s like a Ted talk, you cannot go a minute over those 30 minutes and it usually starts with the CEO presenting a things like accomplishments and their plans and sharing some really cool stories about what they’ve been able to do for the health in the communities that they serve. And then the last 10 minutes or five or whatever they decide, but it’s usually handled by the, uh, the CFO and the CFO will present a series of slides around the similar.
Bill Russell: 08:24 All the systems will present the same metrics. So you can see, uh, you know, their cash positions, you can see, um, uh, you could see admissions, you’d see all sorts of things. And why do they do this? They do this because it’s an invitation only event. You will have institutional investors and bond holders sitting in the room listening to these health systems to determine whether they’re going to buy the bonds that the health systems are selling. The health systems generally sell the bonds to finance their debt. And as you know, cost a lot of money to run health systems. This is very important to them to get their, their, their financing done at the best rates possible so they present some really interesting information and it’s really kind of cool to see 20 to a health systems, nonprofit health systems in a row. Just get up there and present, hey, here’s what we’ve done and here’s what’s going on.
Bill Russell: 09:16 Let me give you a little feel for who was at the conference this year. Who presented it was kicked off the first day of Baylor Scott and white health. Intermountain healthcare, northwestern medicine, geisinger health system, dignity partners, healthcare system, Cincinnati Children’s, a Chi Catholic health initiatives, adventist health system, a mercy health out of Ohio, Florida, Blue Henry Ford health system, parkview health system, Phoenix Children’s hospital, University of California health. And that was the first day. The second day was up. Let’s see. Second Day was, uh, started off with ascension than advocate health in Chicago. Uwu Health, uh, that UWM, University of Wisconsin Madison Hospital for specialist special surgery, the neatest little hospital you haven’t heard of, a out of New York in the suburbs of New Jersey. They’re actually expanding Aurora Health Wake Med. And then northwell finished it up. So you have 22 presentations all going on. I’m right, right in a row about 30 minutes segments. And uh, it was, it was really fascinating.
Bill Russell: 10:37 I learned an awful lot. Let me, let me just jump to that real quick actually, if you’re wondering. I did write write about this on the blog. I wrote a summary of some of the things that I’m going to discuss right now. So here’s a couple of themes. The obvious one is mergers and acquisitions. It’s about scale, it’s about, it’s about growing to greatness. Um, let me give you some of the ways that these health systems talked about growing the greatness. The first was a joint operating agreements, some interesting stories around that most interesting being Uwu Madison really, uh, taking the population health to, to an interesting level in terms of partnering with a competitor in order to relieve pressure on their hospital and to provide additional services that Joe was really well done. If there’s anything written about out it out there, it’s worth reading.
Bill Russell: 11:33 I’ve, I’ve not seen anything yet, but them sharing the story was, was very fascinating. I liked the way they did it, a new access models, telahealth digital hospitals. I’ll talk a little bit about the intermountain digital hospital. I think that’s fascinating. Telehealth is starting to reach critical mass here. You’re seeing the, uh, uh, a god, you’re seeing some other things start to take off. You’re seeing changes in regulations and how it’s handled a cross certain segments. And so telehealth was talked about a lot. A Rafiq expansion is another way that the health system to grow into grant to greatness. Physical hospitals are still being built, uh, if you doubted that it is still happening, but more what’s happening is retail locations trying to get to where people are without getting into very expensive physical buildings. And one of the more interesting things, not for all health systems, but for some of them was international expansion, new locations and international, uh, outside of the US and a destination medicine.
Bill Russell: 12:40 Some of the health systems are talking about how to make them more attractive to people looking for a destination, a destination medicine. So the, uh, I, I wanted to hit on to intermountain digital hospital real quick. So what their duties, they’re taking a hundred service offerings. This is a building that is not a hospital, it’s a building, a, they’re calling it a digital hospital, but it doesn’t have any ear. It doesn’t have a, it doesn’t have all the normal things that a hospital would have. It’s all digital. So digital service offerings that they are going to take their services locally, regionally, nationally, and really beyond that. Now they didn’t go into a lot of detail, but uh, they could potentially partner with people in, in certain markets that could potentially compete with people in certain markets. So it’s interesting to really think about where this might go.
Bill Russell: 13:33 So the healthcare consumer has finally broken, broken, broken through every presentation, had some aspect of the healthcare consumer that we are now starting to think about the care journey and how do we make it easier and how do we remove the friction of transactions and, and how are we looking across the entire continuum? Uh, so the, the, the mind shift has as has happened, we’re not talking about patients anymore, we’re talking about people who are looking for, for healthcare that are actually have high deductible plans, they’re looking for the best price, they’re looking for the highest quality and they are a consumers. They’re doing research and they’re, they’re selecting people. Interesting things around that. A lot of people are doing a digital transformation initiatives, a bunch of technology, but also a lot of really a patient centered, a forums, a dialogue. What do you really want from us?
Bill Russell: 14:34 Uh, really trying to craft an experience for the consumer. Very interesting, very exciting to see that many health systems talking about it. Uh, one of the things I touched on is operational excellence is not really a strategy anymore. It’s an imperative. Every health system talk in some way about tightening their belt is really looking at ongoing operational efficiency. I’m one of the more interesting things. There was a RPA robotic process automation, which essentially has used within their call center to drive out. I don’t have the number in front of me, but it was either 40 or $80, million in cost, a significant significant a material number in cost through RPA. They’ve since package that up, they take that out to the market as a service offering and they’re not only selling that within health systems, but they’re also selling that service outside of health system.
Bill Russell: 15:27 So clearly RPA is something to keep an eye on and probably something we will cover more in the podcast as we progress. Population health. Two point. Oh, is a on full display. Obviously anytime you have intermountain and geisinger speaking, they, uh, they’re at the forefront of this, uh, of this concept of population health. Two point. Oh, geisinger has really dedicated a significant portion of their conversation just talking about their population health initiatives and some of the neat stories that they have going on. One of the stories I share is around food. We all know that food is so critical to, to health, but uh, there are certain places that, you know, your zip code, uh, doesn’t really lend itself real well to getting good quality food and you don’t eat real well. And so they’ve, they’ve put some non license, a Chas Ceta, he kept saying community health associates out into the field and they’re working with.
Bill Russell: 16:32 I’m working with people around their diet. They’re even giving, in some cases, giving them free food and they’re seeing a significant, uh, uh, improvement in terms of reducing readmission and costly outcomes. Intermountain is a, has a, again, I find what they’re doing to be really fascinating. So intermountain has selected to high risk zip codes and what they are doing is they have said, we know that we’re going to have to be able to deliver population health at some point in our future. So what we’re gonna do is we’re going to take two of the most difficult zip codes for us to deliver care in and we’re going to attack that. They’ve partnered with the state. They’re assuming risk for the medicaid spend and they are now trying out a new methods and approaches to really improving the health of individuals within those zip codes. Very interesting. Um, if there was an opioid stock that you could buy, I would say shortage shortage today.
Bill Russell: 17:34 Every health system, not every, but most of the health systems talked about the steps that they’re taking to really reduce the use of opioids and they’ve really declared war on, on this epidemic as it spreads across the U. S, so some interesting programs, but definitely some, some aggressive system wide goals are being set by these, by these leaders around the opioid epidemic. And, uh, I expect to see some significant progress in that area just based on the, on the, the programs that were discussed and the things that people are doing. And then, uh, I think that, you know, the final thing I talked about is that the leaders are starting to mainstream genomix. We had at least four presentations really highlights genomics. Um, but we had one health system talk about how they are starting to drive whole exome sequencing to be a standard practice to, um, to really address preventable conditions.
Bill Russell: 18:35 Very exciting stuff. I look forward to hearing next year. What they talk about should be, should be very interesting. So I have a couple more things in the article you could go to help lyrics that come under the blog. Section two to read the rest of the article. I also talked about Bill Gates. Um, you know, very interesting at the end they asked him what is his greatest indulgence? And he said, not flying commercial. And uh, they asked them is there any job you wouldn’t be good at? And he said, you know, just about every job. He wouldn’t be good for that. Uh, and uh, you know, in a lighthearted moment, but a really true moment, he said, uh, you know, he just, now that he’s done what he’s done really trying to solve world hunger and, and eradicate these diseases, it’s Kinda hard to go back to jobs that are, uh, have too much mundane in them. I mean, he is really working on some really fascinating things. The Gates Foundation is always, uh, always interesting to watch and keep an eye on. So, uh, that’s, uh, that’s all for this week. I wanted to keep
Speaker 2: 19:44 certain sweet. We, uh, we will be back next week or James do child will join us and we will discuss the news from the border to senior end.