Leadership Corner: The Importance of Sharing Your Story

Posted on February 07, 2019

The Leadership Corner features monthly updates from the MHA leadership team. The updates will provide new insights to patient safety and quality as well as information obtained from healthcare workshops and conferences across the country.

Brittany Bogan, FACHE, CPPS, senior vice president of safety and quality, MHA, and executive director of the MHA Keystone Center, discusses the importance of improvement stories and listening to the patient.

Brittany BoganOn Jan. 29, the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality released the results of its latest analysis showing that hospital-acquired conditions declined by 13 percent between 2014 and 2017, preventing an estimated 20,500 deaths and $7.7 billion in healthcare costs. This preliminary data shows that patient safety initiatives such as the Hospital Improvement Innovation Networks (HIINs) are working to make healthcare safer. The MHA Keystone Center leads the Great Lakes Partners for Patients HIIN and, through this initiative, 315 Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin hospitals continue to drive improvements and share their stories.

Improvement stories are more important than ever as we aim to empower staff and engage patient advisors to create a more reliable culture of safety within healthcare organizations. This includes an increased focus on achieving health equity and, most importantly, listening to the patient. Several members of our team attended the CMS Quality Conference last week, and we were inspired by the stories we heard from patients who had experienced adverse healthcare events and decided to use their stories to drive change. As we were sadly reminded, many of these stories are not unique – they exist all over. I encourage you to find these individuals in your community and listen to their story. Invite them to serve as patient advisors, tell their story at board meetings and include them in quality improvement efforts. Use these stories to inspire change in your organization.

On the same note, share stories of what staff are doing to lead improvement efforts and recognize them for their input. In late January, I had the privilege of recognizing two hospital employees for their courage to speak up when they sensed something wasn’t right. From this event, their health system is enacting organizationwide changes related to the reporting of incidental findings. Again, it is the story of what happened that engages and inspires.

Earlier this week, the MHA began accepting nominations for the 2019 Advancing Safe Care award. This award honors a team of healthcare professionals within MHA-member hospitals who demonstrate a commitment to providing quality care to all, promoting transparency and safety culture as they lead the charge for quality improvement. As you listen to the powerful stories your patients and co-workers share, please consider nominating the improvement teams that have been inspired by these stories for this award.

Its been an exciting first month of 2019 at the MHA Keystone Center – please don’t miss the articles in the February newsletter for announcements of new initiatives, updates on other developments and, of course, new stories of improvement from member organizations.

This article was featured in the MHA Keystone Center Newsletter. To subscribe, please contact Ashley Sandborn, MHA Keystone Center communications specialist.


  • Leadership Corner: The Importance of Sharing Your Story

Tags: MHA Keystone Center, Advancing Safe Care Award, Brittany Bogan

Posted in: Patient Safety & Quality

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