Clinical leadership is essential for improving healthcare performance - Richard Bohmer

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As both a teacher and an advisor, Richard Bohmer is interested in the important role clinical leadership and management models play in the improvement of healthcare performance.

Richard is one of the speakers at the international Linnean webcast 'High Value Care and Corona: Uncertainty as the New Normal on October 28th. Register for the webcast here.

What are you doing right now?

After a long career as an academic teacher, I am now working “in the real world” with organisations that are trying to make change happen and improve outcomes that matter to patients. Nowadays, I work with healthcare delivery systems, NHS Trusts and regional networks to help clinical staff improve the value delivered to patients. I am currently working on a similar project with Erasmus MC in Rotterdam. By setting up programs within institutions, I am trying to help them develop their capability for fixing the system themselves.  Everyone, from all disciplines - nurses, social workers, therapists, doctors - is important in making change in the way care is delivered. I try to help clinicians to understand the system in which they work and to play a role in improving their system.

Video Clinical leadership for service improvement NHS 

What's your mission?

My mission is to help clinicians to take on a greater role in the design and management of local systems. These clinicians' involvement is necessary because they have the local knowledge of the patients, patients’ values and beliefs, the science and technological capabilities. I provide these clinicians with the tools to take that role.

When was your first experience with VBHC?

As professor at Harvard Business School, I was aware of the ideas of value-based healthcare early on. In the beginning, much of the discussion focused on cost. However, more interesting questions are: ‘what value are we getting for our money? What are we achieving? What is the value of the things we do? How do we organize systems to deliver greater value?'

Who do you see as an inspiring example/ person?

I have had the privilege of learning from a lot of people, and from some of the best in our field: colleagues of the Harvard Business School, senior leaders from Intermountain Healthcare or Massachusetts General Hospital.  I am still learning. I have been very lucky to go around the world and learn from the best.

How did the corona virus affect your work?

Apart from its effect on my daily work COVID-19 has forced us all to rethink how health care can and should be delivered.  It has focused healthcare’s many stakeholders on a shared problem and created an imperative for innovation.

What do you think the future of care looks like?

I think it is likely that we will continue to have to make changes of a similar magnitude to those we have been making in the last few months.  We are only at the start of a digital revolution that will require quicker management modifications a more rapid translation of new scientific insights into practice.

Closing remarks

The people delivering care have a very important role in the design and the upkeep of the system in which they practice their professions. A lot of what I am interested in relates to how they can be helped to do that.


Richard Bohmer | advisor clinical leadership |

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