One year into tenure, Geisinger CEO praises initiatives

Hospital executives who want their organizations to deliver top patient experience must engage directly with patients, the CEO of Geisinger Health System tells Healthcare IT News.

David Feinberg, M.D., became CEO of Geisinger about a year ago. Despite his leadership responsibilities, Feinberg has tried to see patients every day, telling the publication he makes regular rounds in Geisinger's clinics, labs and the emergency department to ask whether there's anything he can do personally to make the experience easier for patients and their families. That kind of in-person connection "drives everything," Feinberg told Healthcare IT News

Geisinger also recently unveiled its ProvenExperience initiative, which provides refunds to patients who feel their care experience lacked "kindness and compassion." This guarantee, Feinberg said in the article, started out as "Proven Heart," a program that guaranteed a price for heart surgery and pledged not to charge any patients in the event of a readmission, infection or complication. The provider soon expanded this "warranty" to surgeries for acute hip and lung conditions and from there to chronic condition care.

While these initiatives were in place when Feinberg took the helm, he told the publication that work still remained to improve patients' comfort and satisfaction, which he felt Geisinger lost sight of amid intense growth. This observation led to the idea of ProvenExperience, he said. Since rolling out the initiative, Geisinger has refunded about $80,000, with the response overwhelmingly positive so far, according to Feinberg. The criticisms the system has encountered have generally focused on care coordination and communication.

To learn more:
- read the interview