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Developing Effective Strategies for Enhancing Governance, Risk, and Compliance in Hospitals

Developing Effective Strategies for Enhancing Governance, Risk, and Compliance in Hospitals

As hospitals have become increasingly complex organizations, effective governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) strategies have become essential for ensuring patient safety and regulatory compliance. Hospitals are responsible for protecting the health and safety of their patients and must remain in compliance with changing regulations and industry standards. In this blog post, we will discuss components of a successful GRC strategy, how hospitals can ensure compliance with regulatory changes, the best ways to measure the effectiveness of a GRC strategy, and how hospitals can ensure their GRC strategies are up-to-date and relevant.


What are the Key Components of a Successful Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC) Strategy?


A successful GRC strategy for hospitals involves identifying responsible parties, establishing comprehensive policies and procedures, and developing a risk management plan.


First, it is critically important for hospitals to designate responsible parties for maintaining the GRC strategy. A dedicated policy committee that focuses on forming and updating policies can ensure timely and accurate policy library upkeep. A risk and compliance department is necessary to facilitate constant auditing and improvement measures. This role will ideally be a specific job posting so that this duty does not fall on patient care staff who may not have enough hours to devote to such a large task.


Secondly, hospitals must establish a comprehensive set of policies and procedures. These policies should address any requirements set by regulatory bodies, such as the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid and accrediting organization standards. Establishing clear policies helps ensure everyone in the hospital is knowledgeable and can provide best practices set forth by the latest evidence-based research. Practice guidelines from established clinical associations, such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, should guide policies and procedures.


Lastly, hospitals should develop a risk management plan outlining how to identify, assess, and mitigate risks. This plan should include the identification of potential risks by creating a system for monitoring and reporting. A successful reporting system relies on a culture of safety in which frontline healthcare providers feel safe and supported. In this environment, providers will report risks through proper channels.


How Can Hospitals Ensure Compliance with Regulatory Changes While Maintaining Patient Safety?    


Hospitals must ensure that all staff members are aware of the regulatory changes and understand their roles and responsibilities regarding compliance. Utilizing policy management software that staff can access at the bedside improves compliance. An easy-to-navigate and ease-to-search MCN’s Policy Manager and MCN’s Policy Library, that provides over 18,000 policy and procedure templates, provides an enhanced experience over cluttered databases and old paper manuals. 


MCN’s Policy Manager seamlessly integrates skills and procedure content from EBSCO’s Dynamic Health.  With the integration of Dynamic Health procedure content, MCN offers a complete solution to the policy and procedure process, allowing hospitals to save valuable time, money and resources. Ease of use is critically important for the bedside provider with limited time.


Keeping staff up-to-date on changes is also essential for maintaining patient safety. Continuing education modules, like those provided with MCN’s eLearning, allow bedside staff to quickly learn the latest updates and move on to the physical care of patients.


What are the Best Ways to Measure the Effectiveness of a GRC Strategy?


Several metrics can monitor the effectiveness of a GRC strategy. These metrics include the number of policy violations, the number of incidents reported, the speed of response to incidents, and the number of corrective actions taken.


Hospitals should track the number of incidents reported through an internal risk management system. They should educate and support staff to report any time they see a potential safety or patient care issue. This system must be no-fault to encourage meaningful use. Hospitals gain nothing if staff fear reporting patient safety concerns. An appropriately utilized risk management system can track the number of incidents to measure GRC strategy.


Administrators must quickly address concerns reported in the risk management system to mitigate risk. This response indicates how fast the hospital can identify and address issues. Finally, document the number of corrective actions taken. This record will provide insight into how the hospital has responded to reported risks and safety issues. The GRC department may keep a complete record.


How Can Hospitals Ensure Their GRC Strategies are Up-to-date and Relevant?


To ensure their GRC strategies remain up-to-date and relevant, hospitals should regularly review their policies and procedures and assess the impact of any changes from laws and regulations. Hospitals should conduct regular risk assessments to identify potential risks and develop strategies to mitigate those risks. 


Policy writing is time-consuming. Utilizing a tool like MCN’s Policy Library simplifies the process of policy updates and creation. Don’t reinvent the wheel—start with up-to-date templates regularly reviewed and improved for you. From there, customize the template to your specific needs.


Hospitals must be able to quickly and effectively respond to regulatory changes while maintaining patient safety. To ensure compliance, hospitals should create a process for monitoring regulatory changes and updating policies and procedures as necessary. MCN makes this process easy with StayAlert! notices. StayAlert! provides a synopsis of the regulatory change and provides compliance tools such as policies and procedures that reflect the update saving the hospital time, energy and human resources.


Improve GRC in Your Facility


GRC strategies are essential for ensuring hospital patient safety and regulatory compliance. By establishing comprehensive policies and procedures and developing a risk management plan, hospitals can ensure that their GRC strategies are up-to-date, relevant, and effective, giving patients the highest standard of care.




Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2022). What is patient safety culture? Retrieved March 1, 2023 from,influence%20their%20actions%20and%20behaviors


American Academy of Pediatrics. (2023). Clinical practice guidelines. Retrieved March 1, 2023 from


Anders, R.L. (2021). Engaging nurses in health policy in the era of COVID-19. Nurs Forum, 56(1):89-94. doi: 10.1111/nuf.12514. Epub 2020 Oct 6. PMID: 33022755; PMCID: PMC7675349.


Juman, S., & Willeumier, D. (n.d.). Policy Management supports risk and compliance oversight. AHA Trustee Services. Retrieved February 25, 2023, from 

Thomas, L. (2021). What is the role of regulatory bodies in healthcare? News Medical. Retrieved February 22, 2023, from

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