The faulty launch this fall of the federal exchange website has dominated news. But the almost breathy attention paid to it has seemed to show a predisposition to reactive rather than careful proactive managing of disputes and problems (by which I don't mean "spin"). If some of the skills and management tools mentioned throughout this website are used instead of the "same old same old" cycle of finger pointing and deny/defend maybe we shall get somewhere. Willingness to learn from mistakes and from unintended consequences should be a core value in the effort to move forward.
Discussion among different organizations and groups of what tools and management approaches can be helpful in healthcare has continued: Examples include:
My and Jane Conard's September program at the NAMSS annual conference in Florida about using communications and dispute resolution skills to strengthen the quality and effectiveness of hospital medical staff activities;
The October Virginia program featuring a survey presentation by nationally prominent Dwight Golann of the evolution of dispute resolution from a 1980s style of rights based processes to the growth of mediation to the likely increase in mediation "with a small 'm' " inside organizations; accompanying that was an issue of the Virginia State Bar surveying applications of dispute resolution in different substantive fields including my description of uses in the health industry;
A presentation by me and Jamie Baskerville Martin at the November Virginia Bar Association Health Law Section's Annual Roundtable about the use of ADR in a post healthreform world;
More is on the way in 2014. In the meanwhile, here are wishes for a Happy Thanksgiving. We do have much for which to be thankful.