We understand that our clients in the health care industry are inundated daily (dare we say hourly?) with information about COVID-19. You know how to handle the virus – for yourself, your practice, and your patients. If ‘triage’ wasn’t your middle name before the pandemic, it surely is now. You’re getting info from every news source, from your own administration and from health care experts around the globe. While we hope that our communications have been informative and helpful, we know it’s a lot to digest. And while it may sound difficult, now is the time to shift your focus. It’s time to move from defensive tactics to proactive planning.
You and your staff have been educated, and have learned from daily trial and error how to handle this crisis. With your business continuity plans tested and solidified, it’s time to turn your attention to new areas of focus. These include(1):
- Workforce management: ensure employees that their personal safety, as well as nontangibles such as their mental well-being and work/life balance, are top priorities
- Communications (internal and external): reach out to both your employees and your customers to let them know what you are doing to impact change during this crisis; remind them why they depend on you
- Cybersecurity enhancements: times like these are ripe for exploiting weaknesses, so strengthen your security protocols before you experience a data breach
- Operational changes: online breaches are not the only threat; access to physical locations needs a thorough review to ensure employee and patient safety
- Supply chain plans: flexibility is the key to problem solving (for example: even non-virus-related issues, such as simple plumbing repairs at your practice, could take weeks due to parts availability and delayed delivery timelines)
- Finance and liquidity: payment regulations shift constantly due to governmental oversight; be prepared for income fluctuations by forecasting multiple reimbursement models(2)
- Regulatory influence: connect with both local and national government officials to offer valuable insight in crisis control and future pandemic planning
Yes, that’s quite an involved list. The good news is that it doesn’t all have to be accomplished today. Proper planning is paramount to switching to a proactive mindset. In the end, the investment of time, energy, money, and resources provides great payoff and benefits when compared with the alternative (wait-and-see) approach. One of the most important things you can do when developing these action plans is to remember why you got into the health care field in the first place. Those foundational principles(3) will guide you to building solid solutions for the elements outlined above.
Contact us today. Your professional liability coverage is just one of many tools you can leverage to set and attain the goals discussed here.