Strategic Initiatives and Process for Public Participation
In keeping with the formal organizational values of "partnerships" and "our people, our community," as well as our belief in openness, inclusiveness, and transparency, NMC strives to provide multiple opportunities for public input in the hospital’s current services and our plans for the future. The goal is to foster discussion with community members in various formats relating to the health of the community, needs in the community, hospital services, and opportunities for improvement within our hospital and our local health care system.
Collaboratively Assessing and Addressing Community Needs & Priorities:
The hospital has been a long-standing collaborative partner in two formal community assessment and reporting projects (in addition to the work done in 2004 and 2006 through the Act 53 process). The Franklin Grand Isle United Way’s “Who We Are, How We Live, What We Need – Guide for Community Leaders” is a foundational document in planning efforts. Data and insight from that document is typically shared with the NMC Board, Leadership, and Medical Staff leaders during the hospital’s annual planning process – either directly during years of updates or indirectly as reference material associated with other presentations. NMC has also been an active participant in the development of the Franklin Grand Isle Community Partnership’s “Bridges to Community Well Being -- Regional Report Card.” The priorities, outcomes, and indicators from this document are similarly incorporated into planning considerations at NMC. Both of these community-based initiatives are developed by using a blend of statistically-valid quantitative community data, input from providers and community leaders, and qualitative/anecdotal data and input from the community at large. In 2009, the community collaborated to merge these two documents – further reducing duplication of effort and providing a single publication to summarize the community’s needs and the actions being taken to address those needs. NMC has had an active role in that effort. Naturally, as appropriate and feasible, the hospital is an active participant in, and supporter of, community-based collaborative efforts to address many of the issues identified in these reports.
For 2012, NMC is working with the Franklin Grand Isle United Way and the Community Partnership to create an updated version of the “Bridges to Community Well Being” community needs assessment, looking at issues relating to income, education, and health. In keeping with the latest Federal mandate on the matter, NMC is also in the midst of conducting a formal “Community Health Assessment” that includes both a review of quantitative statistics relating to our areas health as well as a significant qualitative survey of local residents’ perceptions of health in our community. Both of those documents will be published in the second half of calendar year 2012. Action plans to address the priorities identified will be developed by NMC and other organizations – both individually and collaboratively. These assessments will also be folded into the hospital’s next wave of strategic planning as we work to create our FY’14-FY’16 Strategic Plan.
Achieving Openness, Inclusiveness, and Meaningful Public Participation:
NMC uses a variety of strategies to formally and informally engage the community in our own strategic planning efforts, decision making, and efforts to improve the health of our community:
NMC also gathers valuable public input through participation in community planning events by representatives of the NMC staff. These public meetings are typically focused on planning what the community can do in areas outside the direct provision of healthcare (such as crime and public safety, transportation needs, environmental conservation, Vermont’s energy future, etc). NMC participates as both a major employer and a healthcare provider, maintaining an active ear for opportunities in terms of “what can the hospital do” that may be supportive of the community’s efforts. These ideas are then funneled into the hospital’s short-term and long-term planning, creating a multi-directional planning channel that directly links the hospital to the community’s own efforts.
NMC engages the community through our role in a wide variety of community partnerships and initiatives. We take great pride in the community involvement by our staff as individuals as well as the formal involvement of NMC as an organization. The following is a sampling of the broader groups in which NMC participates within our community as an organization:
The 2010-2013 NMC strategic plan has been reviewed with the NMC staff, managers, Incorporators, physicians, and Board members. It has been endorsed by the Leadership Team, the Medical Executive Committee, and the Planning Committee of the Board. It was adopted by the full Board at their June, 2010 meeting. Work on the Background work on the 2014-2016 Strategic Plan will begin in July of 2012.
The environmental assessment conducted in the preparation of the 2010-2013 strategic plan showed that our population is growing, but slowly – an average rate of just under 1% per year for our primary and secondary service area. Much of that growth is concentrated in the southern portion of our service area (Fairfax, Georgia, and Milton). It also showed our population is aging – with the number of people over the age of 65 projected to increase by 23% between 2008 and 2013. The assessment also identified that Vermont itself has the second lowest birthrate in the nation which is declining, a trend we see reflected in our service area. NMC was right at the expected national benchmark for inpatient market share of 50% for a sole hospital in a county, however a top-performing hospitals in such areas achieve up to 70% market share. The initial physician needs analysis showed our service area could support six additional primary care providers.
Based on the findings of the Environmental Assessment and discussions during the planning process, six critical issues were identified as top priorities to be addressed:
The strategic plan carries a dashboard of measures used by the NMC Board and Leadership to monitor NMC’s status, providing empirical guidance to the strategic priority projects which flow from through the strategic plan.
Significant effort is ongoing as the hospital continues works to address priorities facing the community and the hospital, with highlights including:
For additional information on hospital strategic planning, capital plans, and/or depreciation schedules, please contact NMC’s Director of Planning & Community Services (see below).
In addition, NMC also engages the community in our efforts by welcoming their active participation in the hospital, through:
NMC’s Strategic Plan – Priorities & Updates:
NMC’s Board, Medical Executive Committee, and Leadership Team work together – drawing in expertise and facilitation from QHR -- to develop the hospital’s strategic plan. A comprehensive rewrite is conducted every three years, with yearly updates in the intervening years. Consideration is given to community needs and perceptions; demographics and other aspects of the local environmental assessment; political/regulatory pressures, marketshare, utilization, and financial performance; and a variety of additional factors:
Here is a glimpse at some of the initiatives flowing out of the 2010-2013 Stategic Plan:
For more information on strategic planning and public participation, please contact: