Dr. Lucian Leape Talks With Student Scholars in Telluride #TPSER7

What are the transforming concepts that need to be developed by a health care organization in order to instill a safe culture?

According to Lucian Leape MD, Adjunct Professor of Health Policy at Harvard University, who came to Telluride to share his wealth of knowledge and experience related to patient safety, there are five core concepts that need to be explored and implemented in order to first create a culture of respect. Those concepts are: 1) Reform medical education; 2) Integrate health care; 3) Find joy and meaning in work; 4) Engage consumers/patients; and 5) Adopt a transparent culture.

Dr. Leape’s challenge to our group — How do we motivate CEOs of health care organizations to make a culture of respect the priority? How do we develop awareness of the problem so that there is pressure for action? What can you do “from the bottom up?”

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2 Responses to Dr. Lucian Leape Talks With Student Scholars in Telluride #TPSER7

  1. Jonathan Munro says:

    These thoughts are in response to Dr. Leape’s naming of disrespect as a central problem in the healthcare culture.

    Flawed Genius
    Who can estimate the worldwide influence of American television? Strangely, it seems natural to everyone that while growing up in Australia there was no shortage of U.S. television. The comparison is interesting, particularly in hospital-based dramas. While American television consistently features doctors, Australian television sympathizes with and consistently features nurses. Any doctors with the respect of the viewer are down-to-earth and respectful to all. It is the common-sense and perception of the charge nurse or the character of the common doctor which trumps the elite specialist, the latter being regarded always with suspicion. The viewer might then change the channel to a polar opposite – an American show centering on an elite doctor. Our sympathies are with this flawed genius, of whom all is forgiven. Our relationship with these doctors is complex. We variously admire their intellect or success in conflict. We may even revel in their sense of burn-out, the darkness. More perversely, can we admit that we possibly envy the freedom they have in humiliating their opponents? Vicariously, many emotions and victories are experienced, infused as they are with the disrespect that we acknowledge is so endemic. I suggest that an important element in this acceptance is the very immature “success narrative” accepted by our society. Once again, the relationship is complex but I believe worth reflecting on as we consider the perpetuation of disrespect within healthcare. We must recognize the traits that we elevate and wrestle with this. But rest assured that, at the end of the show, all is forgiven of genius, and this is what is so troubling and requiring of our attention.

  2. Elizabeth Hoff says:

    As I reflect on our small group discussions surrounding the need to develop a culture of respect in medicine I can’t help but be disturbed by the fact that we need to have these discussions in the first place. I view medicine as a field of service. As medical professionals our mission is to serve our patients. If our patients’ best interests are truly our focus then respect should be automatic to ensure that this goal is met. Clearly, this isn’t the pervasive theme throughout health care institutions in the United States. I understand that I am essentially preaching to the choir but I am empowered by the fact that there is a proverbial choir to preach to. The numerous experts I have had the pleasure to meet in Telluride have worked relentlessly to lay the groundwork for my generation of future physicians. When I look around the classroom at my peers I am further encouraged that the information learned here will be brought back to medical institutions around the United States and change will be implemented. I am looking forward to the next two days in which we will begin identifying tangible solutions to the many problems we have identified. We are motivated and eager to make a difference, all we need now is a game plan.

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