Many of my readers know of and admire Jim Conway, former COO of the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, and more recently a senior associate at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and a faculty member at the Harvard School of Public Health. A regular feature of Jim's speeches and lectures is a presentation of this slide, an indication of the relative priority given by hospital CEOs to various current issues. He uses it to demonstrate that safety and quality are well down the list for most CEOs.
You might expect that ranking of quality and safety would have risen over the past several years. But there was a major disappointment in 2009, as its place was lowered substantially.
But we can't blame just the CEOs for missing the boat on elevating safety and quality. It is the governing bodies of the hospitals, behind and above the CEOs, who should hold them accountable on this front.