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New IHI head talks about his Scottish experience

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The “Old Course” at St. Andrews. Mr. Feeley, like many Scots, is an enthusiastic golfer.

Derek Feeley is the new  chief executive of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. Mr.  Feeley is  from Scotland, where he was head of the national healthcare system before becoming executive vice president of the IHI in 2013.

In this Hospitals & Health Networks interview he talks his experience in Scotland. Among his remarks:

“{The Scottish system is}a single-payer system. It’s almost exclusively tax funded. There’s very little competition. The National Health Service is more or less a monopoly provider of health care, but part of my responsibilities in Scotland was extended to the health of the population, as well as to delivering effective health care, and I had to do that within a cash-limited financial allocation…. So what I had to do in leading that healthcare system is what we call the Triple Aim at IHI:”

  • “Improving the patient experience of care (including quality and satisfaction).
  • “Improving the health of populations.
  • “Reducing the per capita cost of healthcare.”

“I had to make sure that the quality of the healthcare experience we were delivering was as high as it could possibly be, and I had to make sure that we were delivering improvements in the health of the population. I had to make sure that we were getting maximum value for every dollar that we were spending.”

“The challenges that leaders are facing in healthcare are pretty similar right across the developed world, actually — economic factors, political change, demographic pressures, the growth of co-morbidities, shifting customer expectations, and the accelerating pace of change. The challenges that leaders are facing are actually very similar across the Developed World. There never has been such a challenging time to be a leader in healthcare, but the good news is, because we are all tackling the same kind of issues, the opportunities for us to collaborate and learn from each other are significant.”

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