Each summer, my extended family gathers at my grandparents’ cottage in northern Wisconsin to celebrate the 4th of July. It’s one of my favorite traditions. It allows some time to declare my independence from the busyness of the day-to-day.

As I prepare to embark on this special time, I thought I would share a few paradigms to consider declaring independence from when you return to your practice or organization on July 5th.

We must tolerate our EHR system…

With the rough road of implementation in your rear-view mirror, it’s time to look forward at all the possibilities ahead of you.  As the saying goes, there’s a good reason why the windshield is larger than the rear-view mirror.  Substantial optimization opportunities exist for almost every EHR implementation I’ve encountered.  These optimizations quite often change the game from one of merely tolerating to one of fully leveraging.  

Declare your independence, and begin positioning your EHR as an underutilized asset that you plan to fully leverage for the good of your team and your patients.  

Data is too daunting…

I hear this paradigm or similar versions of it weekly, and completely understand why.  Everyone is talking about how data analytics is the key to future success in any, and every, field – healthcare most definitely included.  This puts a lot of pressure on leaders to get after it.  Getting after it often means spending lots of dollars on data tools and talent, and then scratching your head when you still can’t answer your key questions.  Daunting… and damn frustrating.

Declare your independence, and begin with a short list of questions that are vital to running your practice.  This is where your data journey begins.  With this level of focus, you can often find your way through the data to your answers.  All with your current tools and talent, and possibly a small amount of expert advice.  Less dollars.  Less daunt.    

Those technologies aren’t for us…

In my humble opinion, this paradigm is likely holding your organization back in ways you don’t recognize, and may not fully understand until it’s too late.  Most healthcare organizations are scarred from EHR fatigue.  Even the mere thought of another system, such a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, causes nausea.  

Declare your independence, and be open to discussion and analysis of the value of unfamiliar technologies.  As our healthcare landscape evolves towards extreme focus on quality and patient engagement, we must think differently about how we get the job done.  This will likely lead to adopting best practices and technologies from other industries.  

I’m hopeful one of these paradigms strikes a nerve with you.  If so, there’s no better time to declare your independence.  Being a proud American, I suggest recognizing your newly found freedom with a hot dog, some fireworks, and a few cold beverages. 

Wishing you a wonderful Independence Day!  

Always here to help,