Monday, July 28, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me!

Today is my birthday…and aside from getting many birthday wishes I received two great compliments regarding our Colleagues and the caring Planetree environment and great services we provide. What a nice present; way to go team!

First up, another compliment for our Therapy team. Whatever they are doing in Therapy Services, it seems a week doesn’t seem to go by in which someone calls me to talk specifically about Therapy Services and their very special team.

1) Therapy…
A Therapy patient called in today to discuss what a wonderful experience she had in our Therapy department. “Everybody was so nice & friendly. Thank you!” she said.

Secondly, I got a visit from a Colleague regarding Planetree.

2) So Proud to Work at ACH…
One of our Colleagues came in to talk to me about how proud she is of our hospital and how much she enjoys working here. She said her mother is a currently a patient at another local hospital and she cannot believe how unfriendly the staff is. Some of her comments included, “They do not offer to open doors or assist you in anyway as we do at ACH. The food is terrible and the hospital is dirty.” She went on to say that her mother commented, “These rooms need cleaned.” The Colleague said that the room her mother is in is a makeshift ward with two beds stacked atop each other. “You can hardly get through they are crammed so close together. The staff does not pay attention to patients,” she said, noting that one day her mother needed to get up but nobody would help, so her mother was trying to get out of bed by herself. This Colleague said she spends a lot of time at the hospital with her mother because she does not feel safe leaving her there alone, adding that when her mother was a patient at ACH she never worried about leaving her.

Is our hospital better because of Planetree? Absolutely, because our Colleagues practice in a way that makes all of us proud to be on the ACH team.

Thanks for making my day a great one.


Friday, July 25, 2008

Calls from Patients and Guests

I am always amazed at how many calls I receive from our patients and guests. Most just want to let us know how much they appreciated a special moment that had been created for them (through the compassion of our staff) or to voice appreciation for a response they received from one of our Colleagues or physicians.

There a few calls expressing dissatisfaction. They are usually surprised that they can get the CEO on the phone so easily and they also appreciate the knowledge that our staff receives feedback from me in order to improve processes and/or better handle a patient’s or guest’s specific needs. Here is a recap of comments from a call I received today:

“Just received a call; ER was very busy. Patient knew she was bottoming out and requested OJ; something she usually kept with her. Without hesitation one of the staff members immediately responded and genuinely seemed glad to help. They were busy with so many others and just wanted to express thanks for this moment. It was an act of kindness and service she felt should not go unrecognized. Sometimes it is just the little things that can mean so much. Way to go team. It says a lot about practicing in a Planetree Hospital.”


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

It has been a while...

It has been a while so my last sign off …..”talk to you soon” was a bit of a long stretch.

Today we welcomed Brenda, Tamara, Brooke, Terry, Sue, Casey and Kelly as new Colleagues to Alliance Hospital. Three members of the group shared their thoughts about working at ACH. What was great to hear is that one of them will drive more than 30 miles to work --passing several of our competitors’ facilities along the way-- because she wants to work in a Planetree environment. Another was drawn here because she did some of her training at our place and really appreciated the mentoring and support of her preceptors. The third said she was glad to be at ACH because she had heard so much about us from friends who enjoy working here. I enjoyed my time as a presenter during the new Colleague general orientation process and discussing our dreams and the expectations for our organization with these newcomers.

As part of my presentation this morning, I discussed the importance of listening to our customers. Interestingly enough, immediately following my presentation I received a call from the wife of a recent patient. Part of the call had to do with the rudeness of one of our staff members, but the majority of the call was very positive. The caller asked me, “How do you find such wonderful people to work here?” The more I thought about it, I remembered what our new Colleagues were telling me this morning about why they came here. People join us because they know they will have the freedom to practice their passion in a proud manner – or because they know that coming here will afford them an opportunity to learn and grow -- and possibly find new passions upon which to build their strengths.

The caller ended our conversation by saying that what disappointed her husband the most during his stay here was that he was not able to stay for dinner the day he was discharged -- because he really loves our food and was looking forward to what he had ordered for dinner! Hopefully sometime soon he and his wife will just drop by for dinner since our Café restaurant is one of the best choices for a great meal at a great value in this area.

Better sign off with a thank you for listening.