Director of Surgical Services Industry Updates

So, your hospital accreditation site visit is coming up in a year or two. Do you feel prepared? Yes? But are you really? What if you had a simple list of items you could reference to double-check that? You’re in luck, you are holding that list in your very hand (or, on your computer).   A trio of highly experienced surveyors, Kathy Beydler, RN, MBA, CNOR, CASC; Rosie Ross, RN, BS-HCA, MBA; and Phil Meyer, RN, MHA, BSN, RNFA, highlight nine areas outlined below that may need a second look or extra attention before the day of your site visit.    1. Preparing for Survey vs. Maintaining Preparedness for Surveys  Some facilities may engage in a flurry of activity to prepare their accreditation survey. It’s best to approach survey preparedness as a process that is ongoing and continuous, not a...

Kathy W. Beydler and Whitman Partners Launch Survey Survival Guide for Perioperative Professionals Contains up-to-date information on best practices and industry expectations PORTLAND, Oregon – March 3, 2021 – Whitman Partners, a surgical services search firm, has partnered with Kathy W. Beydler, interim perioperative leader, keynote speaker, and consultant, to publish The Survey Survival Guide: Pocket Guide to Survey Success. Beydler wrote the guide to serve as a step-by-step refresher containing valuable information hospital and surgery center surveyors are looking for and a reminder to staff and leadership to highlight the good work they are already doing.  “Leadership outside the red line doesn’t always know or understand what is happening behind the redline and that can make a facility vulnerable to deficiencies. My goals are to...

An Interim Director of Surgical Services is familiar with unpredictability. In a new assignment, the needs of the OR, often disparate, compete for their attention. Prioritizing what to execute first is a delicate balancing act. Throw a pandemic into the mix and those challenges can be magnified 1000x.  How have evolving expectations during a global health crisis affected interim leadership? A handful of interims share their thoughts.  How the Specter of COVID has changed surgery  During the early stages of the pandemic, elective surgeries shut down. However, earnings from surgeries can be as high as 65% of a hospital’s revenue. Waiting for a vaccine was not financially feasible. In response, organizations had to create policies to safely handle COVID patients when they enter the OR.  “Many facilities did not, and some...

Here at Whitman Partners, we are frequently asked to include diverse candidates in our Directors of Surgical Services pool. As a result, we’ve adopted the mindset that “every search is a diversity search.” It’s a good policy, but is it enough? Unfortunately, the data tells a different story. The Institute for Diversity in Health Management (IFDHE), an affiliate of the American Hospital Association, shows that the percentage of minorities in healthcare executive positions is low: 11%. In first and mid-level management positions, the numbers aren’t much better: 19%.   So last year, prompted by the Black Lives Matter protests, we launched our...

  5 Key Points Have a point person who will gather the team together and take the lead on discussing performance standards and provide guidance on what to expect during the survey process.  Before the real survey, conduct a mock survey to reveal deficiencies and implement improvements. Coach and prepare your staff through in-services, regular rounding, and questions of the day during morning huddles.  Be congenial and honest. Don’t argue about findings; offer additional information or use the formal appeal process. Main areas of survey focus include infection prevention, universal protocol, medication management, Point-of-care testing, and patient safety.   Full Conversation How long have you been a surveyor? Nine years....

Some of our 40 Fast and Future honorees gave us incredible insights into the variety of ways they approach perioperative leadership at their facilities. In the spirit of a new year and new beginnings, one of the questions we asked them was, “What are your New Year’s resolutions for your OR?” Considering the challenges of managing surgical services during a pandemic, it’s imperative to not only be flexible enough to pivot but to have solid goals for day-to-day operations.  Here are the inspiring 2021 ambitions they shared with us:    My New Year’s Resolution is...

5 Key Points Stay connected to what is happening on the ground by making rounds throughout your Perioperative Departments and the departments that impact Perioperative Services.  Cultivate future leaders. Identify others who might make good leaders and actively mentor them.  Be prepared to push mentees out of the nest to their next opportunity even it is outside your organization.  Focus on team achievements, not personal achievements.  Make work-life balance a priority. When home, disconnect from work to be present with loved ones.    Full Conversation Is there a moment or event that drew you to perioperative leadership? I had an exceptional mentor who recognized my potential...

  In our 2020 Road Warrior series, we featured a sampling of our interim Directors of Surgical Services (DOSS) who spoke about their experiences at various hospitals. Among the fantastic content we have curated in these conversations are 10 clever solutions to some of the most common issues faced in ORs today.   1. Charlie Wade: First utilization of drive-thru COVID testing using closed down banks   Drive-thru testing for COVID is now common in many places, but when the pandemic initially hit, healthcare organizations were scrambling. Charlie Wade happened to be on assignment in the Alaskan town where a hospital was one of the first to implement testing using then closed bank drive-thrus.   “I was amazed that the hospital came up with this. It was way before the government got involved or shut down the borders as far as containing...

   5 Key Points The OR leader must have a thorough scientific understanding of sterile processing  The amount and complexity of instruments processed by SPD has dramatically expanded over the years C-suite should think of SPD as an integrated part of surgical services  When making decisions about purchasing new equipment, SPD should be included in those conversations SPD clinicals should be completed in a large OR to get applicable experience   Full Conversation Below What is the impact of life-long learning in sterile processing on patient care?  Lifelong learning is distinguished from the concept of continuing education. It can be best described as being a voluntary process with the purpose of achieving personal and professional fulfillment and can be the product of both informal or formal...

Introduction When COVID-19 cases began to grow in the United States, hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers (ASC) suspended elective surgeries to prepare for the influx of coronavirus patients and protect surgical patients from potential exposure to the virus. However, this came at a tremendous cost. A May 2020 report from the American Hospital Association estimates that between March and June 2020, canceled surgeries, elective procedures, and outpatient treatments resulted in a $161.4 billion loss in earnings. A pause on these types of procedures—which comprise a majority of hospital revenues—has forced organizations to closely evaluate their balance sheets. This has created opportunities...