NEW CHEF logo 2012   
Chicago Health Executives Forum Newsletter
Fourth Quarter, 2014
In This Issue
Letter from your President
Apply for a Tuition Waiver
Message from our Regent
Halogen Software White Paper

CHEF President's Corner


Raymond J. Swisher, FACHE
Branch Manager, Medicare Advantage
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services RO V 

I believe that this is my last opportunity to reach out to you as President of the Chicago Health Executives Forum, however you are not quite done with me, as being President of CHEF is a 3 year commitment (President Elect, President, and Immediate Past President).  I am deeply touched by so many things we've done this year, especially our recent achievements in promoting Diversity and Inclusion with our collaboration with the National Forum for Latino Healthcare Executives (NFLHE) and our establishment of a Board Director position to facilitate these efforts.  I look forward to Richard Buchler taking the reins at the Annual Meeting on February 25, and I have every reason to be optimistic that you will continue to find our organization to be your preferred home for premium networking and educational events.  I hope you all find peace and happiness in the upcoming holiday season!  


Best regards, Ray

Project Portfolio Management

You cannot do it all.  Do what counts most.


C. Richard Panico
President, CEO & Founder
Integrated Project Management Company, Inc. 

Few would argue that Healthcare is facing and will continue to face unprecedented challenges and change in the next decade. More than ever, organizations will have to maximize the return on investments, focus human resources to the highest value-generating activities, ensure that time is being appropriated diligently to diminish waste and address time-sensitive objectives, and attest that all activities contribute to the organization's essential deliverables and competitive position.  While a significant focus has been placed on improving organizational efficiencies related to day-to-day operational processes and clinical outcomes, a significant opportunity exists to improve the approach to identifying, prioritizing, planning, and executing key initiatives that satisfy the organization's strategic initiatives and associated cascading projects.


Click here to view/download the full article.

Apply for a Tuition Waiver 

To reduce the ACHE educational programming barriers for ACHE members experiencing economic hardship, ACHE has established the Tuition Waiver Assistance Program.

ACHE makes a limited number of tuition waivers available to Members and Fellows whose organizations lack the resources to fund their tuition for education programs. Members and Fellows in career transition are also encouraged to apply. Tuition waivers are based on financial need and are available for the following ACHE education programs:

  • Congress on Healthcare Leadership
  • Cluster Seminars
  • Self-Study Programs
  • Online Education Programs
  • ACHE Board of Governors Exam Review Course

All requests are due no less than eight weeks before the program date, with the exception of ACHE self-study courses-see quarterly application deadlines on the FAQ page of the tuition waiver application. Incomplete applications and applications received after the deadline will not be considered. Recipients will be notified of the waiver review panel's decision not less than six weeks before the program date. For ACHE self-study courses, applicants will be notified three weeks after the quarterly application deadline.


If you have questions about the program, please contact Teri Somrak, associate director, Division of Professional Development, at (312) 424-9354 or tsomrak@ache.org


For more information, visitache.org/TuitionWaiver.


A Message from your ACHE Regent


Anita J. Halvorsen, FACHE
Regional Strategy and Growth Officer
Presence Health/Presence Mercy Medical Center 

ACHE Members of the 

Metropolitan Chicago area,


Happy fall to my healthcare leader colleagues of Metropolitan Chicago!  You won't hear any polar vortex jokes coming from me....


I have had the opportunity recently to speak with future leaders studying in different types of healthcare leadership programs (MHA, MBA, MHSA, etc.) about our profession - sharing my personal experiences, my colleagues' career paths, and our experience with association involvement.  These conversations are always rewarding - hopefully to the individuals or groups seeking input, but most certainly to me.  It's a time to self-reflect on what have been takeaways from experiences and relationships and consider who in the network I have built over the years that I want to reconnect with. I hope you continue to have these types of conversations with future and developing leaders to promote our profession. 


Click here to view/print the full article.

Is Your GR Program Built for Success?

Magi Curtis
Vice President

Jarrard Phillips Cate & Hancock, Inc.


During the past decade, government relations programs at high-performing healthcare organizations have evolved dramatically. What once was considered by some to be a secondary function is now recognized as fundamentally important to achieving a health system's strategic goals.


The world healthcare professionals live in has undergone unprecedented change in the last few years - and continues changing daily. Through that perfect storm of change has emerged a rising role of government relations in healthcare organizations.


Not least among the factors driving this change is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. With the ACA, providers are held to new standards of accountability for quality and cost of care - all while dealing with staggering reimbursement cuts and tighter government regulation. The ACA's sweeping reforms mean it has never been more important for providers to establish a consistent, effective dialogue with elected officials and regulators.


Click here to view/print the full article.


A special welcome to our newest members of the Chicago Health Executive Forum. 
Click here to see who they are.

10 Critical Communications Objectives in the Certificate of Need Process

Kathy Schaeffer,
KSA Public Relations
Chapter Communications Committee Member


A focused communications strategy can help your health system achieve success in the Certificate of Need (CON) process. Illinois is one of 36 states in which a CON is required to build a new hospital or other healthcare facility. As healthcare executives know, state government CON programs are designed to regulate costs and prevent duplication of services, and to ensure access to health care.


As your health system prepares to seek permission to construct a new facility, you undoubtedly will engage your system's best strategic planners, financial experts, clinical leaders, legal minds and construction and facilities professionals. It's also important to prepare an effective communications strategy to support your technical plans and CON application.


At first blush, communications may seem to be a nice-to-have feature, rather than a critical component of a successful CON application process. Yet, scores of Illinois health providers will attest to the need to communicate throughout the CON process - with physicians, employees, community leaders, patients, donors and other important stakeholders. Many hospital CEOs rank having a strong CON communications team and strategy right up there with having an airtight technical application and winning legal counsel.


Here are 10 critical communications objectives to consider as you plan your CON application. 


Click here to view/print the full article.

The Influence of Employee Satisfaction on Patient Satisfaction and Safety

The Case for Automated Talent Management in Healthcare


Submitted by
Halogen Software,
a CHEF sponsor

Intuitively, it is easy to link patient safety and patient satisfaction to employee satisfaction. A happy employee is focused on their professional tasks, without being distracted by a negative environment, which leads to better performance. Statistically valid research is turning this intuition into fact.


For example, The Georgia Quality Initiative, which began in 2003, has identified that Long Term Care (LTC) facilities with happy employees have fewer patient falls, and fewer residents with acquired pressure ulcers and acquired catheters. There is also statistically valid evidence that shows a strong relationship between patient satisfaction and employee satisfaction.


The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) already have initiatives underway that use performance-based financial incentives and public reporting of quality information to encourage improvements in all aspects of quality, including patient safety. In fact, CMS's Innovators' Guide to Navigating CMS (August 25th 2008) states "CMS intends to develop a hospital VBP (value-based purchasing) measure set that comprehensively addresses clinical quality, patient safety, patient experience, and resource use."


Since patient safety and patient experience are heavily influenced by employee attitudes and satisfaction, an unhappy workforce can have significant financial consequences on payments from Medicare and Medicaid, the two largest payment systems.


To download Halogen Software's complete white paper on this topic, please click here.

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