One of the smartest men I have ever known had a high school degree, filled out the New York Times crossword puzzle every day, read the Bible cover to cover annually, worked hard to provide for his family, and taught me so much about people, life and learning. As a lifelong student and a holder of multiple degrees, I can confirm that higher education does not make one smarter. However, education unlocks the mind to thoughts and potential that may not have been present otherwise.
After decades of doing things the same way and educating clinicians in the same fashion, we find ourselves in a different world of healthcare. Census in the acute care setting is dropping as expected and outpatient services delivered to the patient is the new normal. The previous training, formal and informal, has not prepared us for the current changes in healthcare.
Education, opening the mind to opportunities, thoughts, and ideas, is a necessity to move healthcare forward in this new age. It is imperative that we let go of “the way we have always done things” and embrace the fact that there is a new way to deliver quality care, meeting all the regulatory requirements AND at a lower cost to the consumer.
Johns Hopkins has developed the Hospital at Home model. The physicians are going back into the home to provide patient-centered evidenced-based care. Nurses are also involved in the care of the patient in the Hospitalized at Home model. Instead of doing things the same way, Johns Hopkins reinvented the “house call” improving the delivery of care, increasing patient satisfaction, decreasing readmission rates, and decreasing costs.
Healthcare reform is forcing change in the delivery of patient care. Instead of thinking about what we can no longer do, we need to think about how we can do things differently.
“Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think.” Albert Einstein