Iowa Specialty Hospital

Making the Rounds with Dr. Hurt

November 5, 2015

We Serve People

About 2 weeks ago, Steve and I hosted a group of new leaders and providers at a Studer conference.  As usual, it was filled with excellent speakers on relevant topics.  It can be information overload.  The messages of two speakers really jumped out at me.  The first was Quint Studer.  His topic was physician burnout.  He recently wrote a book about the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of it.  With the advent of EHR’s, ICD-10, utilization review, insurance company denials, decreased reimbursement, increasing malpractice claims, insurance premiums, and more demands placed on them, it is easy to see why burnout is so prevalent. Did you know there is such a thing as the physician misery index? For real…Google it! No other profession has this.  It’s a real thing! Anyway, one of his take home messages mirrored that of one of my mentors, Dr. Ralph Kramper: A daily balance of quiet time, adequate sleep, good nutrition, exercise, and fun diversion can really help prevent burnout and provide DAILY balance.

The other speaker I will refer to is Bob Murphy.  He started by asking the crowd to yell out, as a kid, what they wanted to be when they grew up.  He wrote them down as people spoke up: Teacher, Astronaut, Nurse, Banker, Coach, etc.  He flipped the page and wrote down “We serve people”. It’s really what everyone wants to do deep down.  It’s really all encompassing.  For us, it’s not just patients.  It’s our friends, families, colleagues, and co-workers.  Bob further said that in his hospital he never wants to hear “It’s not my job” (if he hears it said he will say, “You’re right, it no longer is.”), or the medical corollary “It’s not my patient”.  Something else he said he never wants to hear or especially have a patient hear, “We’re short staffed”.  His response; “We just got shorter staffed!”

We are blessed here.  We have a service culture. As we approach the holidays, be kind to yourself and more kind to others.  Whether you know it or not, serving others is what fulfills you and keeps you grounded.

I don’t know what your destiny will be but one thing I do know, the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought and found how to serve. – Albert Schweitzer

-Dr. Michael Hurt, CMO


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