Why you’re not getting promoted

Do you feel like you’re getting passed over for deserved promotions at work? CareerBuilder.com offers a bit of practical insight in Why you’re not getting promoted.  A good read if you think that any of these might be holding you back:

Promotion Killers

No. 1: You’re a slacker

No. 2: You’re doing “fine”

No. 3: You’re not visible enough

No. 4: You’re a difficult person

No. 5: You haven’t mastered the job you’re in

No. 6: Your boss needs you in the job you’re in

No. 7: You don’t have the right image

No. 8: You have enemies

No. 9: You’re competing with superstars

No. 10: Your company isn’t in a position to promote you


Outsourcing Hospital Credentialing – When Is It The Right Answer?

As a rule, hospital credentialing is the most intensive credentialing process medical providers undergo.   

According to The Benefits of Outsourcing for Hospital Credentialing (Note: This article is directly connected to an advertisement for a California CVO.)

“The amount of staff time and the expense of researching every medical provider can be heavy, draining resources from other administrative functions, and requiring experienced staff and access to research resources. Yet hospitals have been slower than other medical organizations to outsource the credentialing process, despite potential benefits: faster turnaround time, cost-effectiveness, and savings in staff time and training.”

So, the question is, when is outsourcing the best solution?  Some considerations:

Outsourcing is never a good solution if the work of the Credentials Verification Organization (CVO) the hospital utilizes isn’t accurate, responsive, and timely.

It is also necessary to consider how many other responsibilities the medical staff office handles.  If the department’s primary responsibility is credentialing and they have adequate staff and resources to perform those responsibilities, it may not make sense to consider outsourcing.

However, if the medical staff/credentialing office also handles meeting management for multiple committees and boards, CME program administration, medical library oversight, newsletter publication, Allied Health oversight, medical staff/hospital social functions, etc., credentialing may not receive the attention it deserves.  Outsourcing may be a valid consideration.

As you know if you work in this field, credentialing is just a part of what is required to determine whether a provider (either new to your staff or undergoing a two-year reapplication) is qualified and competent to care for patients in the organization.  Real time and attention must be spent on privileging. 

Credentialing determines who the provider is, what education and training they’ve had, and what reputation they’ve developed among their peers.  Privileging establishes the detail of what specific procedures the individual is permitted to perform while treating patients in the hospital setting. 

Privileging can never be outsourced.  Those decisions require thoughtful consideration and evaluation by peers, and may often depend on what resources, both technical and professional, are available at the treatment location.

NOTE TO PATIENTS:  If a physician wants to perform a complex procedure on you in the office rather than in the hospital, it may be because the hospital is unwilling to grant him/her the privilege.  Find out whether the physician also has permission to perform the procedure in the hospital, if not, consider that a warning flag.

De-escalating Conflict With a Few Simple Words

I attended a presentation at work the other day on dealing with conflict.  The speaker was engaging and funny, and presented key points in easy-to-remember ways.  Here are a few keepers:

1.  There may be some truth in what you say.

A calm, easy response to try when someone is criticizing you.  You haven’t agreed with anything (because after all, there may or may not be any truth in what they’re saying) but you’ve likely brought the tension in the conversation down several notches with that simple response.

2.   I am so glad that I can be here to help you today. 

A calm, professional response to offer to a complainer who wants you to know just who they are and who they know.  The rest of the statement (best said in your “inside” voice) is “because I’d do the same for anyone.”   

3.  I’m so sorry that you’re upset, it sounds like this has been very frustrating for you.

An empathetic response to someone who is very angry.  You aren’t accepting personal responsibility by apologizing, just kindly acknowledging and sympathizing with their frustration.

Great suggestions.  I plan to give them a try.

The Heart of Broadway and Times Square

Back in February of this year members of the NAMSS Conference and Executive Committee traveled to New York to tour the Marriott Marquis in preparation for our annual conference.  I took a few photos from the windows of the hotel.  As you can see, in just a couple of weeks we will truly be on Broadway – right in the heart of Times Square. (Click on the photos for a larger image.)

Don’t forget that you can still sign up on site for either the full conference or one of the great weekend pre-conference sessions.

Start packing!Nyc








New Dress Code for Clinical Practitioners in the UK

No_long_sleeves_2The UK is adopting a new dress code for clinical practitioners as part of an ongoing effort to stem the tide of hospital-acquired infection, particularly MRSA.  Britain’s Health Secretary Alan Johnson issued this statement today through the Government News Network:

"I’m determined that patient safety, including cleanliness, should be the first priority of every NHS organisation. Across the NHS we continue to bring the number of MRSA cases down and make progress on measures to reduce C.difficile."

The new package includes the following measures:

2. New guidance on clothing will mean that hospitals will adopt a new "bare below the elbows" dress code i.e. short sleeves, no wrist watch, no jewellery and allied to this the avoidance of ties when carrying out clinical activity. The traditional doctors’ white coat will not be allowed. The new clothing guidance will ensure good hand and wrist washing.

All acute Trusts are expected to go ‘bare below the elbows’ by January 2008.

Patient Advocacy – Five Quick Tips

CNN Health offers a few quick tips on how to advocate for your loved ones when they are in the hospital.  In an article entitled Five Must-do’s When a Loved One is Ill, author Elizabeth Cohen advises:

1: Don’t be afraid to intervene
    Don’t be afraid to ruffle a few feathers

2: Ask questions until you understand the answer
What did you just say?

3: Remember that you know things the doctors don’t
     Keep your loved one honest… "Make sure they tell the doctor everything."

4: Temper your loved one’s enthusiasm for quick fixes
     Even if the physician is world-renown

5: Scope out the nurses
  It’s crucial to befriend the smartest, most helpful nurses early on. "Nurses will guide you.


Joint Commission Healthcare Wiki – Will it Open International Discussion?

Earth As you may know, Joint Commission has instituted a Healthcare Wiki.  If you’ve used Wikipedia you have a good idea of the concept. Users contribute and edit the content.  (By the way, Wiki is short for wiki wiki, Hawaiian for quick.)

Through the Healthcare Wiki Joint Commission is opening the door to international discussion among healthcare stake holders.  The concept has great potential if people use it, but will it fly?  Although the site disclaimer says under Accreditation:  Participation in WikiHealthCare is independent of the accreditation process and will not impact your organizations accreditation status or any efforts by your organization to retain such accreditation, consideration must of course be given to anything one publicly states or posts about their organization. 

To reinforce that idea, under the heading WikiHealthCare is a community of health care stakeholders is this statement: Perfection is not required. Be professional, but do not worry about making mistakes… But remember — whatever you write here will be preserved for posterity.

If you can’t bear to have someone edit your writing, a Wiki may not be for you.  Any registered user can edit.  Recognize that articles can be changed by anyone and no individual controls any specific article; therefore, any writing you contribute can be edited and redistributed by other users.

WikiHealthCare has a code of conduct (i.e., Be nice.)

WikiHealthCare is intended to disseminate credible health care information
WikiHealthCare serves as a forum for information dissemination. It is therefore critical that authors cite verifiable, authoritative sources whenever possible, especially on controversial topics

Registration requests name, role, and organization. As for the listed role categories – Hmm, there is a place for comments, so I encourage MSP’s to request that a category, perhaps Credentials Manager, be added.  After all, in most institutions Medical Staff Professionals carry the bulk of responsibility for assuring that their hospitals meet the Joint Commission Medical Staff Standards.  Here are the current choices:

Administrator Case/Care Manager Consultant
Counselor Dentist Discharge Planner
Health Care Professional (NOS) Health Information Manager
Health Information Specialist Management Engineer Nurse
Nurse Practitioner Occupational Therapist Pharmacist
Physical Therapist Physician Physician Assistant
PI/QI Professional Program Coordinator Programmer
Psychologist Researcher Respiratory Therapist
Risk Manager Scientist Social Worker
Statistician Technician Therapist

If you’d like to become a registered user and join the discussion, here is the link: 


Speaking of NAMSS…  Some of you may know that this is my third year on the NAMSS Conference Committee, and that I am serving as Assistant Chair for the 2007 New York City Conference. 

Over the past decade I’ve held a number of leadership positions in both the National and State organizations, and what a fantastic experience that has been!  I can’t say enough about how much I’ve learned, how many interesting, inspirational, and down-right fun people I’ve met as a direct result of that volunteerism.   I count among my friends and acquaintances some of the brightest, most forward-thinking individuals in and around the field of medical staff administration.

I’ve had a “behind-the scenes” peek at just how much work goes into:

  • Developing a national conference program
  • Contracting excellent speakers
  • Planning a luncheon for over 1000 people
  • Planning pre and post conference events
  • Writing, designing, and printing a myriad of complex, high-quality documents
  • Arranging for enough hotel rooms in a major metropolitan city to accommodate expected attendees, but not so many that the organization is left with a staggering bill for the ones that remain unbooked
  • Attracting and accommodating vendors and sponsors who not only help make a conference financially viable, but offer valuable products and services to attendees
  • Designing and developing a national web site
  • Writing, designing, and selling advertising for a national publication
  • Developing industry-specific, credible, certification programs
  • Attracting new organization members and retaining current ones
  • Supporting, encouraging, and educating a diverse membership

It has been an excellent experience, though not always a smooth journey.  In addition to the travel, collaboration, and sometimes heady sense of accomplishment, I’ve also experienced frustration, anxiety, misunderstandings, and hurt feelings.  But truthfully, I’ve gotten through all of that and come out smarter on the other side.

So as the voice of considerable experience, I encourage you to step up.  Volunteer.  Learn and grow.

This however, is a year of transition for me.  About six months ago I changed positions and am now learning the field of Hospital Risk Management; a fascinating turn in my career path. I’m also excited about another opportunity that is percolating in the background, but that I anticipate will be ready for “prime time” soon.   

In view of all of these changes, I have resigned from the NAMSS Conference Committee effective at the end of the New York Conference.  I plan to maintain my certification, so I expect to attend some conferences, and to continue to speak from time to time at State Association meetings. I’ve already submitted a recommendation to ASHRM (American Society for Healthcare Risk Management) to consider a collaboration with NAMSS on future education sessions; it’s a natural fit.

So, if you’re planning to be in New York, keep your eye out for this face:

I’d love the opportunity to say hello and wish you well.

NAMSS New York Conference – September 29 – October 3, 2007

 How time flies when you’re planning a conference! 

PreConference registration is closed, but on site registration is still available for the NAMSS 31st Annual Conference and Exhibition, being held this year in New York City from September 29th through October 3rd. 

Even if you can’t make it to the entire conference, there are some great weekend preconference sessions to consider, especially if you’re in the New York City area.  Among this year’s offerings are a Saturday legal update, Advanced Credentialing and Leadership, with Barbara Blackmond and Susan Lapenta from the health law firm of Horty Springer, and a Sunday afternoon session with Hugh Greeley, founder of The Greeley Company, It’s Not Your Father’s Medical Staff: Successful Hospital Physician Alignment Options.

If you’d like to attend one or both, these sessions are priced individually, and are available with or without full conference registration.  See page 6 of the registration brochure.

If you’re already registered for the conference, be sure to take a few minutes to read these “Big Apple Bites” written for attendees by members of the New York Hospitality Team:

  • Dining Out in the Big Apple
  • Getting Around New York City
  • Top Ten Places to Visit in New York City
  • Seeing the New York City Sites

If you signed up for the harbor cruise on Wednesday evening, there’s more information about it here:
http://www.namss.org/membership/2007_conference/Big_Apple_Bite_Cruise.doc  It looks great!

The clock is ticking, it’s nearly time for the curtain to rise on our Broadway production.  See you in New York!