Meeting addresses Stanford Health Care’s future plans

In a meeting that featured online, interactive participation from SHC employees, leaders discussed how Stanford’s hospitals and medical school strengthen each other.

David Entwistle (left) and Lloyd Minor address employees during the Nov. 6 State of Stanford Health Care town hall.
Steve Fisch

Stanford Health Care’s challenges and its plans for the future were among the topics addressed at the State of Stanford Health Care meeting Nov. 6 at the Li Ka Shing Center for Learning and Knowledge.

SHC President and CEO David Entwistle and School of Medicine Dean Lloyd Minor, MD, addressed a standing-room-only crowd of almost 400, with another 1,500 employees watching the first-ever online, interactive broadcast of the annual event.

The two Stanford Medicine leaders laid out the collaborative work being done across all three organizations — Stanford Health Care, Stanford Children’s Health and the School of Medicine — and they used the interactive polling system to get input from employees attending both onsite and online.

Later that week, Entwistle also shared his presentation with an employee audience at a tech facility on Embarcadero Road in Palo Alto, and with employees at the SHC office in Newark.

Entwistle shared a performance snapshot of SHC, which showed high scores in customer service and patient satisfaction, as well areas where improvement in quality is needed. “It’s important to know where you are on the track, and where you are currently headed,” he said. “Numbers are not the core of everything we do, but they certainly tell us where we are making progress on the things we value as an organization.”

He also shared SHC’s plans for sustainability in an increasingly competitive marketplace. “Stanford is not on a trajectory to acquire more ambulatory hospitals,” he said. “Instead, we will continue to develop strategic alliances with the people who are already sending us patients.”

Entwistle also addressed areas in which the organization needs to improve. Using the interactive polling system, he asked employees to guess where SHC ranks on the University Health System Consortium/Vizient quality measurement of 107 hospitals. Only 30 percent of the responding employees knew that it ranked 71st

“When you look at all the amazing things we do, there are still opportunities for improvement,” said Entwistle. He outlined SHC’s “value equation,” which attributes success to a combination of quality, service, cost and employees.

“We are looking at the things we can do to make a difference,” he said. “There are a number of areas in which we have already had an impact in a short period of time, and a number of areas where there are still significant opportunities to improve, such as mortality, infection and surgical cost containment.”

Strategic planning

The second half of the meeting was devoted to the integrated strategic planning process involving Stanford Health Care, Stanford Children’s Health and the Stanford School of Medicine. The dean described how collaborative working groups are helping to develop the plan.

“In my five years at Stanford, and from what I know from before I arrived, never before have we worked so well together as we do now,” Minor said. “All three entities share the same mission of patient care, research and teaching, and all are remarkably aligned around that vision.”

As an example, Minor noted that the working group on care delivery models includes Robert Harrington, MD, from the school; Quinn McKenna from SHC; and Kim Roberts from Stanford Children’s Health. The team is looking at what the services across the care continuum will look like in 2025, taking into account intensive competition and the fact that Stanford is a high-cost system. Another working group is focusing on safety, quality and value, with a goal of positioning Stanford as one of the top 10 academic medical centers in the country by 2025.

These working groups will continue to meet to finalize their recommendations; the final plan will be presented to the Stanford University Board of Trustees in 2018.

Stanford Medicine integrates research, medical education and health care at its three institutions - Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford Health Care (formerly Stanford Hospital & Clinics), and Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford. For more information, please visit the Office of Communication & Public Affairs site at

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