This article appears in the March 2012 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.
Catholic Health Initiatives, based in Englewood, CO, has found it helpful to meet regulatory and business challenges by forming a cohesive long-term strategy that includes both. Chief Operating Officer Michael Rowan says it's focused on the idea that there are three stages of healthcare through which the organization has to evolve.
"Right now, we're focused in stage one, which is about maximizing clinical operations," he says. "Do a good job under the current environment, focus on the hospital, and get cost-effective."
Over the next few years, he says the system has to evolve to the point that it can assume performance risk.
"We do that by being more integrated and evolving away from doing as much volume as possible. We build alignment with physicians so they're focused and incentivized in the same way we at the hospital are."
Only at the third stage will CHI be prepared to manage population health effectively, "and we're five to seven years out before we're good at it and it's a requirement to be successful," Rowan says.