The field of health care risk management has developed significantly over the last two decades, leading professionals to new and interesting roles and responsibilities. The present economic situation is pushing healthcare companies to assess operational effectiveness.Making the most of profits, or at least not working at a loss, has long been at the forefront of business goals. Extremely few companies can survive in the long term without meeting their expenditures. But what amount of risk can or needs to be taken to obtain this objective? While patience for risk differs with the culture of the organization, it seems to have come to a stage where our prediction of risk is at the expense of our customers which should not be the case.
What is A Risk Management
Risk management is generally a hybrid function connecting a number of disciplines to decrease the occurrence of business loss. Activities can be proactive and reactive. Proactive approach is identifying and managing a problem even before it actually becomes a problem while Reactive approach is simply acting once the problem has taken place. Many healthcare companies would agree that they have a risk management system, but is it reactive or proactive?
One challenge that the risk management function is facing with is exhibiting its “importance” how can you evaluate what doesn’t happen because it was eliminated? The healthcare sector is concentrated on bench marking and statistics. So, how can a business case for risk management be made? The problem lies in discovering a method that measures its importance efficiently and successfully. If it can also show a cost savings, it addresses to those people charged with managing the companies financials. Few examples for making a business case are:
- Demonstrate a decrease in claimed adverse events in association with execution of specific focused strategies for instance, decrease of falls after execution of a falls decrease program or use of skin care protocols to avoid skin ulcers.
- Work with your insurance provider loss control professionals to obtain risk management credits that positively affect your cost of insurance.
And while data is essential, risk management professionals must also increase their awareness as well. Some ideas to increase a Healthcare Risk Management professional’s visibility are:
- Take part in Board of Director conferences and deliver education on internal risk management problems, how the problems are being addressed, and market trends.
- Assemble regularly with Senior Leadership to talk about your activities and how your initiatives are impacting patient safety.
- Be reactive to your stakeholder’s requests for support.
- Make rounds and be a source so employees know whom to contact with risk management issues.
- Take the lead on tasks that assist organizational goals & major initiatives.
- Participate in conferences and education and learning programs backing essential initiatives.
- Participate in the preparing of new services and products offering risk management input.
How to Become a Risk Management Professional
Healthcare organisations recruit people who have a bachelor’s degree in any healthcare related area, although some companies prefer applicants who hold a masters degree. Apart from bachelors and masters degrees, a Training and Certification in Healthcare Risk Management will boost your chances of getting hired quickly.