Monday, March 31, 2008

Dr. James Miser speaks on Patient Safety at Min-Sheng General Hospital

On Thursday, March 6, 2008, Dr. James Miser, former CEO and Chief Medical Officer of City of Hope National Medical Center, was invited to speak to Min-Sheng Healthcare administration, physicians and staff on the subject of "Improving Healthcare Quality through Root Cause Analysis." Besides being the CEO and Chief Medical Officer beginning in 2001, Dr Miser is a world renowned pediatric oncologist and father of 10 adopted children.

Dr. Miser stated he has always had an interest in patient safety. The physician oath says first do no harm. "Medicine use to be simple, ineffective and relatively safe. Now it is complex, effective and potentially dangerous," he stated.
According to a 1998 released by the Institute of Medicine, "44,000 to 98,000 people die in the United States health care system each year due to preventable errors made by health care practitioners."

A systems analysis approach can be used to thoroughly evaluate all patient care systems, identify areas of risk, implement changes to mitigate risk and prevent errors before they happen. Dr. Miser shared several examples of how a systems approach identified errors before they occurred and several stories of errors discovered through a systems analysis approach after the errors had been committed.

Dr. Miser also told several stories of errors and potential medical treatment errors that involved his own children, noting that if these situations could happen to his family then it could certainly happen to anyone. Dr. Miser believes that a “no blame” culture is essential if you want to change a hospital system. In a “no blame” culture you accept that an error can occur, but it also provides an opportunity to make the hospital a safer place.

A "safe hospital" in Dr. Miser's words is one where there are excellent physicians, an excellent staff, excellent systems, and excellent patient involvement in care and education. In describing each aspect of a "safe hospital, Dr. Miser pointed out the importance of hospital leadership create a culture of safety by reporting errors without a fear of blame or retaliation is key to accurately implementing system changes. Most medication errors are due to system errors not incompetence. While reporting errors can be a frightening thing for a hospital system, it is necessary to report errors accurately to be able to change the system and make it safer.

Dr. Miser graciously answered questions from the audience and discussed his medical philosophy with other audience members after the presentation was completed. He completed his day with a tour of Min-Sheng General Hospital followed by lunch with Dr. Fred Yang, the CEO and Mrs. Connie Ma, the Chief Quality Officer of Min-Sheng General Hospital.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Taiwan’s Min-Sheng Hospital Aims to Go Global

Min-Sheng General Hospital officially launched its "International Healthcare Center" on Feb. 21, 2008. With the establishment of the International Health Care Center, the department will strive to position itself globally by providing medical services to foreign patients travelling abroad. During this event the hospital introduced its international services to the public and signed several contracts with health care related companies.

The founder of Min-Sheng Hospital, Dr. Min-sheng Yang, said, “The relatively new field of medical tourism has seen steady growth over the past few years in Taiwan. The founding of the International Healthcare Center is a stepping-stone for us from the domestic health care industry to the globalization movement allowing for diversification and allocation of healthcare resources to the international market. Min-Sheng Hospital’s international team is currently working on many programs to bring overseas patients to Taiwan by offering extremely high level amenities and medical expertise comparable to the hospitals of developed nations. Additionally, medical costs are relatively low here in Taiwan, so I hope more and more patients from other countries will visit us.”

On the morning of the ceremony, Min-Sheng General Hospital signed contracts with the Taiwan Medical Tourism Development Association, Yuan Ze University, International SOS and the E-Health Consulting Group. The cooperation plans range from research projects regarding sustaining business models to patient referral to international medical rescue actions.

Min-Sheng General Hospital is the first JCI (Joint Commission International) accredited hospital in Taiwan. The 600 bed hospital provides comprehensive tertiary health care including a 24-hour trauma center in the city of Taoyuan. It is the closest major hospital to the international airport offering several unique specialties by a team of highly skilled medical specialists.
The International Healthcare Center is located on the 22nd floor and is staffed with several multi-lingual specialists dedicated to building up Min-Sheng's international brand image and business model. It has a 24 hour hotline as the single contact window for responding to overseas patients' inquires. If needed, the center also provides assistance with communication and medical information to local expatriates visiting the hospital.

The International Healthcare Center will work in close conjunction with the hospital’s Asia Pacific Centers of Excellence: the VIP Health Checkup Center, the Orthopedic Center, the Minimally Invasive Surgery Center, the Aesthetic medicine center, the Heart Center, the Eye Center, and the Infertility Center. Staff members are confident that the hospital’s excellent reputation for high quality care will attract travelers from North America, particularly those seeking bariatric surgeries, total hip and knee replacements, Lasik eye surgery, cosmetic surgery and VIP health checkups.