When the national average gas price tops $5.00, it impacts every consumer that drives an internal combustion engine-powered car. And although the price at the pump dominates the headlines, the impact of oil prices that have nearly doubled in the last year affects far more than drivers. It impacts nearly all organizations including hospitals, ambulatory centers and physicians’ practices. In addition to shipping costs for parcels and less-than-truckload shipments increasing by 15% to 25%, input costs for items like antiseptics, personal protective equipment and IV tubing that are made from oil or natural gas have climbed as well. Mix in the recent COVID lockdowns in China, widespread staffing shortages and other supply chain disruptions and the result is higher costs for the supplies healthcare organizations use every day to run their operations. With inflation reaching the highest level since 1981, taking steps to combat those increases is especially important. How can healthcare organizations reduce the impact of inflation and rising costs?
Have you ever played the snap test? It’s one way financial analysts assess a company. If you snapped your fingers and the company no longer existed, would anyone notice? If the answer is no, the company probably isn’t a good long-term investment. The snap test works in other areas as well. For example, what if you snapped your fingers and no longer had a label. Would it disrupt your organization in any way? Because it’s unlikely labels are the first thing you wake up and think about each day, you might be surprised at their importance. But your operation won’t function without the labels that are essential to your business.
Did Hippocrates think that his oath would have such a long-lasting impact when he first wrote it in 400 BC? In fact, whether it’s the actual wording or some derivation, medical students make that same promise at graduation and white coat ceremonies today. In addition, many nurses make a similar pledge, called the Nightingale Pledge, attributed to Florence Nightingale. Regardless of the type of oath or other modern-day professional codes a medical professional lives by, avoiding patient harm is a common thread in each one. But ensuring patient safety through the spectrum of care requires more than an oath. It requires a system-wide commitment and a multidisciplinary approach.