SCHA is committed to a new strategic plan that aims to address the challenges facing hospitals and health systems in South Carolina and to prepare for the future of healthcare delivery. From rapid market consolidation to engaging the social determinants of health, the role of hospitals is changing and therefore SCHA must change as well. We spent much of 2017 aligning our work around the three major priorities identified in our strategic plan:
We are now beginning to see these priorities reflected more clearly in the work we do as we recognize that many of our greatest healthcare challenges exist outside the walls of our facilities. The Alliance for a Healthier South Carolina continued its mission of coordinating action to improve the health of all people in the state and increased its alignment with DHEC to establish a statewide plan for population health. To further advance the work to build healthier communities, we launched the South Carolina Behavioral Health Coalition to bring together statewide partners to improve access to mental and behavioral healthcare in our state.
We also adjusted our approach to our members, with a renewed focus on data and analytics to better connect them to the services they need from SCHA. Comprehensive environmental scans are now available to every member that highlight the greatest challenges to their communities and the services that exist to help address those challenges. We’re doing more to bring these critical issues to our members with Regional Leadership Councils that encourage member feedback in a more intimate and engaging setting.
We continue to grow our efforts to deliver highly reliable care, and we recognized more hospitals for eliminating harm in 2017 than we ever have in the history of our Certified Zero Harm Awards. South Carolina’s hospitals now serve as a national model for high reliability with the completion of a five-year project to implement safe surgery checklists that resulted in improved surgical outcomes and a significant study published in the Annals of Surgery. We were honored to serve as a learning lab for the rest of the country and demonstrate that a team-based communication checklist can drive quality improvement in the operating room.
To address workforce and labor challenges, we spent 2017 rebranding and expanding the scope of Healthcare Staffing Services (HSS) to provide more comprehensive solutions to the organizations that we serve. HSS continues to grow from a regional supplemental staffing partner to a national provider of workforce solutions, and the branding must catch up with the level of services we are providing. Be on the lookout for big news from HSS in 2018 as we introduce a new look and a new set of tools for workforce development.
It’s nice to see a plan come together. We’re excited for what the future holds for SCHA as we stay laser-focused on our priorities and work to improve health and healthcare in South Carolina. And it wouldn’t be possible without our hospitals and health systems. Together, we are doing important work.