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HANYS President Bea Grause discusses healthcare challenges, building resilience in annual remarks

Healthcare organizations face a number of challenges, including government mandates, claims denials, demands for new technology, disruptive competition, outdated regulations, workforce shortages, emergency department overloads and an endless stream of payment reductions.

In her annual President’s Address on June 20, HANYS President Bea Grause emphasized that, in line with the Annual Membership Conference’s theme of Resiliency in Healthcare: Building a Sustainable Future, healthcare providers will need to rely on their resilience to tackle these problems while simultaneously positioning themselves for the future.

She identified three key attributes of resilience that New York’s healthcare providers can further develop and deploy as they work to both succeed in today’s challenging, fast-changing healthcare environment and clearly articulate and implement their vision for the future of healthcare.

Speaking to focus, Bea said that members must clearly understand their organization, their industry and the larger economic issues and threats they face. “Staying clear amidst the chaos has never been an easy task,” Bea said, while noting increasing challenges require more time spent, not less, reflecting and recharging before taking action. “Moves have to be well thought out because there’s less wiggle-room to make a mistake.” Bea said that in this environment, HANYS is focused on protecting and optimizing provider reimbursement because without financial stability, providers cannot fulfill their mission of providing care in their communities. She noted that HANYS’ advocacy also strives to help shape the role of government in healthcare to be “a partner, not an albatross.”

Grit requires “a willingness to get into the arena; a willingness to work through the discomfort, the obstacles, the tough conversations — authentically and with everything you’ve got.  And if you try and fail, then you get to come back and have another go at it.” Bea reflected on HANYS members’ advocacy efforts on a few days’ notice this year to protest one billion dollars in Medicaid cuts. Bea elaborated on two focus areas at HANYS where grit plays a role: its commercial payer agenda and ongoing performance improvement work. She also offered examples of where that grit is bearing fruit.

To be nimble, Bea urged members to have goal clarity, role clarity and great teamwork. “You need good data to improve your ability to act, but often you need to rely on your gut to figure out what has to change and what needs to stay the same.  In short, you need to be decisive and clear when the world is anything but that.”

According to Bea, “Next year will not be for the faint of heart,” as 2020 is an election year in which healthcare will be at the front and center in both the federal and state arenas. She spoke about the work HANYS will be doing in the months ahead to set its policy agenda and position hospitals as leaders for tomorrow while expanding coverage and high quality care for all who need it. She closed by thanking members for all their organizations do for their patients and their communities.

Published June 21, 2019