Jonathan M. Taitz, M.B.Ch.B., Thomas H. Lee, M.D., and Thomas D. Sequist, M.D., M.P.H.
J. M. Taitz, T. H. Lee, and T. D. Sequist, "A Framework for Engaging Physicians in Quality and Safety," BMJ Quality & Safety, published online July 14, 2011.
Physicians play a pivotal role in the success of initiatives to improve the quality and safety of health care, but many hospitals lack a sustainable plan for engaging physicians in such efforts. This study sought to identify the strategies used by top-performing hospitals that have successfully engaged doctors in quality and safety programs.
In interviews, executives at 10 hospitals endorsed similar strategies:
Approximately one-third supported the realignment of financial incentives to engage physicians in quality- and safety-related activities, while another third opposed the idea. Interviewees also suggested standardizing the measurement of physician engagement to allow benchmarking with other organizations and across physicians within an organization.
Using these strategies, health systems can overcome significant barriers to physician engagement, which include time constraints, physicians' desire for autonomy, and insufficient medical school training.