Healthcare-Related Book Reviews

Lynne Cunningham's 2015 Book Reviews

Healing Physician Burnout: Diagnosing, Preventing, and Treating

Written By: Quint Studer in collaboration with George Ford, M.D.

Healing Physician Burnout is a thought-provoking, deeply informative book whose time has finally come. It's the result of a process that began with a series of panel discussions Studer Group held with physicians and leaders across the country. The goal was to determine the root causes of burnout. Insights from these interviews combined with Studer Group's proven tactics yielded the book's innovative and powerful approaches for recognizing, diagnosing and treating physician burnout.

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CG CAHPS Handbook: A Guide to Improve Patient Experience and Clinical Outcomes

Written By: Barbara Hotko, RN; Jeff Morris, MD, FACS, MBA; Matthew Bates, MPH

This is a GREAT book that has been published at exactly the right time. There is so much conversation about improving the patient experience in the medical group setting and everyone seems to be wringing their hands to decide what to do first. This book provides the answers. Each chapter starts with the CG CAHPS questions in a particular section, identifies the tactics that can move results, and summarizes what the reader has learned. There are self-tests on different portions of the survey that can be used by leaders, providers and staff to evaluate their own perceptions of the patient experience. The tactics are correlated to CG CAHPS questions and key Studer Group tactics. There's also a section on proven tactics to improve "always" responses. I guess you can tell, I really liked this book and see lots of immediate ways to use the material in my own speaking and coaching assignments.

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The Patient Flow Advantage: How Hardwiring Hospital-Wide Flow Drives Competitive Performance

Written By: Kirk Jensen, MD, MBA, FACEP; Thom Mayer, MD, FACEP, FAAP

Drs. Mayer and Jensen have written another valuable resource for healthcare leaders. Like Hardwiring Flow, this new book has lots of healthcare examples but The Patient Flow Advantage also includes sports, aviation and manufacturing analogies. Although the authors have reused the definitions which they used in Hardwiring Flow, only a small portion of this material is repetitive of their first book. The rest is firmly new material on hardwiring hospital-wide flow. In an environment where delivering high quality care most efficiently is our imperative, managing and improving flow provides a clear pathway to improvement. This book will be a valuable resource as you manage and lead into the future.

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Maximize Performance: Creating a Culture for Educational Excellence

Written By: Quint Studer and Janet Pilcher

Every time I read one of Janet Pilcher's books, it is reinforced how much education and healthcare have in common. Janet and Quint have done it again with an expanded and updated text that can help education leaders strive for - and achieve and sustain - excellence. You'll enjoy their educational stories and appreciate the Connect to Purpose they provide. There are good summaries at the end of each chapter. The book also provides an excellence alignment with the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award criteria.

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It's OK to Die

Written By: Monica Williams-Murphy, M.D., and Kristian Murphy

Another super resource for families to use as they begin conversations about end-of-life decisions. This is a wonderful complement to Atul Gawande's Being Mortal which I so highly recommended last year. The Murphy's have recorded multiple first-hand stories about decision-making and have provided valuable resources for others to use during these stressful conversations. Some chapters include Lessons Learned and Action Plans. Others provide resource lists, sets of questions for family discussions and forms for recording end-of-life decisions and writing a legacy story.

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Critical Thinking: 50 Best Strategies to Think Smart and Clear, Get Logical Thinking, and Improve Your Decision Making Skills

Written By: Christ Lewis

This book has 50 chapters with one or two pages each. Every chapter has a series of ideas and tips to help you think more critically. This book would be an excellent preassignment for a Leadership Development Institute and solid group discussions about how to apply the tips.

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Better Than Before

Written By: Gretchen Rubin

What a great, insightful book. It was fun to read and helped explain how we develop habits and can adopt new habits. In a healthcare environment in which change is the new normal, Rubin's approach to habits can help each of us adapt and cope. The book provides solid research into how to communicate the importance of changing habits and how to hold yourself and others accountable for their habits.

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Dyad Leadership in Healthcare: When One Plus One is Greater Than Two

Written By: Kathleen Sanford and Stephen Moore

Having read many book with multiple contributors, I was really impressed with how these authors carried the principal content and let others add their thoughts through examples and case studies. That really made the book flow easily. The book is very well researched and footnoted. The case studies are excellent with position descriptions and goals for dyad leaders.

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Your First Leadership Job: How Catalyst Leaders Bring Out the Best in Others

Written By: Tacy Byham and Richard Wellins

I gravitated to the review on this book in my local Sunday paper because I believe that leadership transitions and knowledge transfer are among the biggest issues we have in healthcare today. As I talk to Leadership Development Institutes about Generational Diversity, it becomes obvious that if Baby Boomers ever hope to retire, we need to do a much better job transferring leadership knowledge across two generations - to both Gen Xers and Gen Y staffers. It's a daunting task but one we MUST assume. This book is a primer on leadership that I think will be helpful to new leaders and those considering leadership opportunities. The book fills a real need. There are lots of great quotes from famous people. My favorite quote by the authors in the book, Our research shows that a transition to a leadership position is among life's most challenging adjustments, ranking somewhere between personal illness and managing teenagers.

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Best Care, Best Future: A Guide for Healthcare Leaders

Written By David M. Lawrence, M.D.

What a great overview of the challenges a new healthcare exec is facing. Not only is this a perfect book for your favorite grad student, it will also be a valuable resource for any exec moving to a new organization. Each chapter is a super reminder of the challenges a new organization presents to the new CEO or other senior exec. The book is well-written and has an extensive bibliography and summary of recommendations.

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N = 1: How the uniqueness of each individual is transforming healthcare

Written By: John Koster, M.D., Gary Bisbee, Ph.D., Ram Charan

The authors provide a positive and engaging lens through which to view the transformation impacting healthcare today. Throughout the book - and in the end-of- chapter summaries - there are key questions to ponder. I encourage executives to examine these questions with their leadership teams and cascade discussions to all employees. What a great way for organizations to begin having a fuller understanding of the external environment impacting healthcare and look proactively at the changes which must occur to lead your organization into the future.

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