EDITOR'S NOTE: The following blog post was written by guest author Mic Gunderson, President of the Center for Systems Improvement. Mic has been involved in emergency healthcare for over 40 years in leadership, managerial, and clinical positions including prior service as National Director for Clinical Systems for the American Heart Association.
High performing systems of care for high-risk time-sensitive conditions like cardiac arrest, major trauma, STEMI, stroke, and sepsis are critical to achieving excellent patient outcomes. To make significant improvements in these systems of care, we need to understand how systems work in general so that we can look beyond the individual hospitals and EMS agencies that make up the ‘parts’ in these systems of care.
We need to understand and improve the interactions between those parts. That’s because the interactions between the parts are the primary determinants of how well the overall system of care performs.
Part 1 of the Systems Concepts series begins with a discussion of the definition of a system in general and introduces the idea of systems thinking. The vlog then looks at how that applies to improving clinical quality and economic efficiency in systems of care, particularly for high-risk time-sensitive conditions like cardiac arrest. This post features an excerpt from an amazing lecture given by the late Dr. Russell Ackoff – a major contributor to the field of systems thinking. (Duration – 9:05)
How can you start to improve your system? Find out right here.