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How an Excellent Clinician Becomes an Excellent Teacher

How an Excellent Clinician Becomes an Excellent Teacher

At academic medical centers like the University of Utah, clinicians are expected to teach — but aren’t necessarily taught how to teach. Karen Gunning and Joanne Rolls come from divergent backgrounds — Gunning is a lifelong pharmacist, Rolls a physician assistant — but both are passionate about the principles of instructional design. Turns out, it’s the power of story that supports comprehension for both students and patients.... Read More
Translating Passion into Individual and System Impact

Translating Passion into Individual and System Impact

You need to know Brett Einerson. Why? The maternal fetal medicine fellow is motivated: passionate about reducing uncertainty for women and their families and excited to improve health care on a grander scale. And he knows how to do it: by translating passion into team-based action.... Read More
Mindful Leadership: New Rules for Managing Stress

Mindful Leadership: New Rules for Managing Stress

In health care, stress is a given. So how does a leader manage stress in this challenging environment? University Neuropsychiatric Institute Nurse Manager Tracy Farley (above left) shares several techniques, including Code Lavenders: mindfulness exercises meant to help employees in high-stress situations.... Read More
How To Master The Art of Communication

How To Master The Art of Communication

From pediatrics to palliative care, a common thread runs through physician Joan Sheetz’s career: effective communication. That explains how she ended up co-directing UACT — Utah Advanced Communication Training that focuses on tools to enhance patient and peer interactions.... Read More
What’s a Ski Season with No Snow?

What’s a Ski Season with No Snow?

Value engineer Cindy Spangler has shared her camping and canyoneering expertise with Accelerate in the past. But this winter, her preparation may have done us in: a big purchase of new ski equipment has led to a lackluster snow season. Or has it? Cindy reviews why correlation does not imply causation.... Read More
The Formula For Transforming Health Care

The Formula For Transforming Health Care

Ever had an idea everyone agrees with but still takes a year to implement? Clinical Nutrition Manager Carissa Christensen faced a dilemma as she developed a weight management program for patients struggling with obesity: even after you’ve defined your vision, how do you engage an entire system in an ambitious improvement project?... Read More
Creating a Culture of Civility

Creating a Culture of Civility

Three years ago, an internal study found that Huntsman Cancer Institute employees experienced significant compassion fatigue. Director of Nursing Services Sue Childress teamed up with HCI executives, providers, and managers to combat burnout by promoting conscientious leadership and a culture of civility.... Read More
The Science of Scheduling

The Science of Scheduling

Delivering a great health care experience is only possible with one crucial component: reliable scheduling. It’s such an essential part of efficient operations, in fact, that the University of Utah Health created an access optimization team to help providers across the system.... Read More
Celebrate Signal, Drown Out Noise

Celebrate Signal, Drown Out Noise

To celebrate the New Year, Value Engineer Mitch Cannon applied statistics to weight loss. He was quickly reminded of an important lesson that applies in health care: when you’re trying to improve, don’t overreact to data.... Read More
Five Ways to Have a Serious Conversation

Five Ways to Have a Serious Conversation

Palliative care physician Paige Patterson is an expert at having tough conversations. We asked how she engages patients about their wishes, worries, and plans for the future. For Paige, having a process makes serious conversations easier.... Read More
How to Avoid Two Common Biases

How to Avoid Two Common Biases

Balancing uncertainty, fear, and emotions isn’t easy — especially in health care. Family practice physician Kyle Bradford Jones looks outside of his practice to identify two common biases that affect how we behave in the face of perceived risk. His key insight? The risk that isn’t directly in front of us may be mistaken for no risk at all.... Read More
Accelerate's Best of 2017

Accelerate's Best of 2017

Just over one year ago, we launched Accelerate – University of Utah Health’s improvement community. Here are the “Top 3” articles from 2017 selected by the 16,673 members of our burgeoning community.... Read More
Learning to Lead & Leading to Learn

Learning to Lead & Leading to Learn

Although her employees are scattered across multiple University of Utah Health locations, Jess Rivera, Manager of Environmental Services for Community Clinics, maintains a tight-knit team that works and learns together. To strengthen that bond, Rivera has focused on five leadership lessons spanning value improvement, institutional standards, and good old-fashioned trust.... Read More
Holiday Gift Wrapping the High Reliability Way

Holiday Gift Wrapping the High Reliability Way

First came High Reliability Thanksgiving. Then High Reliability Camping. In keeping with the Lean holiday spirit, Accelerate’s Marcie Hopkins shares her method for high reliability gift wrapping — with a little help from our friends in Sterile Processing, who’ve perfected the envelope fold.... Read More
Improving Wellness: 40 Champions, 20 Projects, 12 Months of Progress

Improving Wellness: 40 Champions, 20 Projects, 12 Months of Progress

A year ago, University of Utah Health decided to tackle a major problem in health care today: burnout. Forty people – and their teams – spread across an enormous health system took on the challenge. We sat down with family physician and co-director of the Resiliency Center Amy Locke to learn about what works in improving faculty and staff wellness.... Read More
The Wisdom of Leaders: How to Cultivate Teams

The Wisdom of Leaders: How to Cultivate Teams

Leaders embody U of U Health’s focus on patient-centered care, respect for people, and continued improvement. Recently, Jess Rivera, Carissa Christensen, Sue Childress, and Tracy Farley described their efforts to deliver a better health care experience for patients by taking care of their teams. In advance of individual articles from each leader, below are four big takeaways that can be put into action today.... Read More
How Technology and Teamwork Improve Patient Experience

How Technology and Teamwork Improve Patient Experience

Managing patients’ expectations is often a euphemism for pragmatically preventing disappointment. But Melissa Briley, physician assistant at Redstone Health Center, integrates technology, teamwork, and clinic flow processes to reduce the uncertainty that comes from waiting for test results or instructions from a provider.... Read More
Lean Behind the Scenes: Sterile Processing

Lean Behind the Scenes: Sterile Processing

Sterile Processing runs a lean operation, delivering millions of instruments to University of Utah Health’s procedural teams. Director of value engineering Steve Johnson, assisted by the video wizardry of Charlie Ehlert, sheds light on our system’s unseen infection prevention heroes.... Read More