Redesigning Clinical Workflows to Return Joy to Patient Care
IHI Forum – Pursuing the Quadruple Aim to Prevent Physician Burnout
IHI Forum – Pursuing the Quadruple Aim to Prevent Physician Burnout

As I write this, I am at 33,000 feet somewhere over the middle of the country on my way to the 28th Annual IHI Forum in Orlando.  I’m looking forward to many great opportunities to support the Quadruple Aim and Prevent Physician Burnout this week.  Stay tuned, as I will be sending updates on a regular basis on twitter, as well as daily blog updates here.

IHI Forum Opportunities to Prevent Physician Burnout

Preventing Physician Burnout: Curing the Chaos and Returning Joy to the Practice of Medicine, the book that my co-author, Diane Shannon, and I have worked on for over a year is due to be published this month.  We hope that this will be a significant contribution to work in this field, as concern about physician burnout has grown significantly over the past few years.  We explain what burnout is, how it happens, and what physicians and health system leaders can do, not just to help physicians affected by burnout, but to change our workplaces to reduce burnout.  You can learn more about the book on my “Book” menu above. To get an email when it is ready to order on Amazon, send me an email at  We will also be hosting a “Meet the Authors” lunch event at the Solaris Restaurant at 12:30 on Wednesday.ihi-session-header

Diane and I will be presenting with Stephen Swensen, MD, of the Mayo Clinic and Pierre Barker, MD, of the IHI on High Engagement and Low Burnout: Solutions for Your Workplace.  We present on Tuesday at 1:30 in Salon H (session C7) and have 336 people signed up to attend.  All four of us share a common message, presented from slightly different perspectives.  Steve will present the approach the Mayo Clinic uses successfully to have one of the lowest burnout rates in the country.  At Sutter Gould Medical Foundation, a group founded 65 years ago by two brothers who trained at the Mayo Clinic, we pursued a Lean cultural transformation, inspired by Thedacare, and supported by Simpler Consulting.  I enjoy sharing the story of how we themed our transformation “Returning Joy to Patient Care” and achieved great improvement not only in physician satisfaction, but also in quality, service, access, and financial stewardship.  In fact, Consumer Reports rated Sutter Gould highest in overall care out of 170 medical groups in California two years in a row.

Team Care to Prevent Physician Burnout

There’s a lot going on in Team Care at this Forum. Practicing in teams, rather than alone, is key to prevent physician burnout.  Office based patient care has gotten significantly more complex over the last 15 years, yet in most cases our approach to office care has changed minimally.  No surgeon would start a case without a team there in the OR.  There is too much complexity and risk to function efficiently and safely going solo.  Yet the vast majority of office visits are done solo, despite increasing complexity.  It’s time to change that for the good of physicians, support staff, and patients.

Tomorrow I will attend a full day workshop on Radical System Transformation to Advanced Team Based Care presented by James Jerzak, MD, and his team from Bellin Health.  Working closely with Dr. Chris Sinsky they have been developing their robust model for a couple of years, and are now sharing their learnings with others.

I also will get to reconnect with a good friend, Peter Anderson, MD.  Peter began team care in his own practice many years ago, after recognizing that the usual approach was unsustainable, not only for him, but for his support staff as well.  He has written two books on the subject – look for him at a book signing on Tuesday morning at the Forum – and now supports other clinics adopting team care models.

Come Visit Us in the Exhibit Hall

This year Simpler’s presence in the IHI Forum Exhibit Hall will be augmented by our parent companies – Truven Health Analytics and IBM Watson Health.  All three will be next to each other, so if you are looking for us and can’t find Simpler, look for IBM or Truven.  They will be easier to spot!


And if you can’t make it to the Forum, because you are busy taking care of patients, or taking care of the care givers, you can keep up with work to prevent physician burnout on twitter #IHIForum, or check out my tweets @pauldechantmd.

Let me know if there is anything special you would like to hear about.

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