“Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much.” ― Helen Keller
The arrival of summer signifies the completion of the MHA’s program year. During this time, the association reviews our many accomplishments related to the core issues reflected in our strategic action plan. These accomplishments directly benefit not only our members, but the patients and communities that we collectively serve as well. As we went through the process this year — a year that was still heavily influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic — a key theme resonated throughout: the MHA, and the health of our communities, is strengthened by collaboration and stakeholders working together.
“Stronger together” is the theme of the MHA’s 2021-2022 Annual Report. It encapsulates how integrated healthcare truly is, whether reflected by partnerships between health systems throughout the state, with our partners at other associations, or through external stakeholders in public health and government. As I have said many times in the past year, our work in this challenging environment is truly an all-hands-on-deck affair. With that in mind, stronger together also addresses the value of the amazing staff at the MHA and how we collectively could not achieve our goals without the expertise, talent and teamwork of our various divisions. Lastly, I must thank Tina Freese Decker, president and CEO of BHSH System and the 2021-2022 MHA Board of Trustees chair, for her exceptional leadership during this program year. Tina provided direction and influence in both the crafting of the strategic action plan, as well as the tactics that we used to meet our goals.
During the year in review, our members had to navigate multiple COVID-19 surges and the most significant workforce crisis I’ve experienced throughout my professional career. However, vaccine access was available to most of our population and new therapeutics became available that have truly improved health outcomes for those infected by COVID-19. In addition, as the focus and attention of our society and lawmakers slowly pivoted away from the pandemic, we devoted significant energy and resources to a host of other important issues including workforce sustainability, health equity, data strategy, behavioral health and more. Collectively, these efforts have supported our association mission and helped to advance the health of individuals and communities.
It is my pleasure to share the completed MHA 2021-2022 Annual Report that goes into greater detail on the strategic objectives and how the MHA met and addressed each task head-on. This summary makes me extremely proud to work with an incredible organization that unquestionably has provided value to our members and made a real difference in our state.
As COVID-19 moves closer to an endemic stage, we have entered a “new normal” phase in the healthcare landscape, which brings unique opportunities to significantly improve how care is designed, delivered and reimbursed. In the coming months, the MHA will establish our specific priorities and strategies for the new program year — and I can promise that we will address all of those priorities with the same intense focus, professionalism and commitment that the MHA has always displayed. And we will do it together.
As always, I welcome your thoughts.