In order for your Healthcare Organization to achieve its policy management, as well as overall risk, compliance and governance goals, it is important to assemble a policy committee. World class organizations assemble innovative boards of advisors and committees. Professional athletes assemble their dream team of trainers, nutritionists, and coaches. Celebrities have their entourage of personal trainers, publicists, stylists and makeup artists that keep them in tip top shape and perception. For something as important as policy governance and management, having a policy committee is critical.
Assembling your policy committee will keep:
– Your policy initiative on track
– Policies up to date
– Your organization in compliance with the tens to hundreds of regulations that might govern and accredit your facilities
Let’s delve into how to assemble that policy committee. I discovered that in my work over the past 13 years with over 1500 healthcare facilities, having a policy committee was the most important differentiator between success and failure.
Policy committees allow for centralization of thought and communication around many key components. A policy committee is usually made up of the key stake holders in charge of each manual or type of policy which at many times mirrors the departmental structure of your organization.
Examples of key members of the policy committee include:
– Chief Nursing Officer
– Director/VP Quality
– Corporate Compliance Officer
– Director of Education/Human Resources
– Lab Director
– CIO or Head of Information Technology
It is a best practice for the policy committee chair to be someone that comes from an area of the organization that is not focused primarily on one department only. You want the chair to be someone that has a vested interest in terms of their job function and role for seeing the benefit of all policies being up to date and in compliance with your regulators and surveyors. Great candidates for the chair of a policy committee would be the Director/VP of Quality, a key stake holder in Administration or the key stake holder in Compliance such as the Corporate Compliance Officer or Director of Compliance.
You should meet a minimum of once a quarter to no more than once a week with a monthly meeting being the ideal. The meeting should be tactical in nature and not strategic or philosophical. It should last no more than 50 minutes with a clear agenda outlined.
By establishing your policy committee, you will be one step closer to policy management bliss.