More and more hospitals and hospital systems are instituting “daily huddles” or “huddle boards” to quickly align and re-align care teams around the most important healthcare tasks and actions. Collaboration can make the difference between high quality care and serious challenges to healthcare delivery.
A recent Harvard Business Review article highlights the typical approach:
In the spring of 2013, Advocate Health Care, one of the largest U.S. health systems, banished all meetings between 7:00 AM and 9:00 AM and instead instituted mandatory hospital-wide leadership “huddles” to discuss safety issues. Most of these huddles take just 15 minutes and allow hospital leaders to develop situational awareness — a collective understanding of the state of operations — and report and anticipate safety events such as falls, medication errors, and delays in care. With the introduction of huddles, reports of safety events across Advocate’s 12 acute-care hospitals increased by 40% (indicating improved detection) as staff members responded to leaders’ commitment to safety and transparency, while safety events have continued to dramatically decrease. Problems that were previously unknown or unresolved are now addressed in a day or two under the direction of the hospital president. Today, huddles occur seven days a week, 365 days a year.