Focus on our Future

Focus on our Future

The future will happen whether or not we act. Planning for it together, and bringing our collective wisdom, creativity and experience to the process will allow us to more proactively shape our future.

Our hospital has been a leader since it was founded. Our community, dedicated health care professionals and our staff are among the best anywhere. There is much of which we can be very proud!

Yet, a sobering economic picture has resulted in significant operational and financial challenges. As we look ahead, we must have sharp objectives and clear priorities. We cannot do everything, but we want to do everything we choose well.

Our plan will consider the thoughtful efforts of prior strategy development initiatives, Federal government, Tennessee legislature, strategic partners, and our ongoing program plans. They should be mutually supportive - even synergistic. The perspective of the planning process community wide - our families, programs, outreach partners, donors, community and other stakeholders. We are more than the sum of our parts; the refresh must reflect and respect the parts but create synergy among them.

2020 Timeline

Strategic Planning

We have designed a process to celebrate the diversity of ideas and capture the creative thinking of doctors, staff, students and the broader Children's Hospital community. Please use this site to assist in creating a picture of what Children's Hospital should look like in 2020 and then determine with us the steps necessary to get there.

This is a strategic refresh because we do not propose a blank slate but rather embrace who we are today, our recent planning efforts and our current strategic initiatives where they contribute to our vision of East Tennessee Children's Hospital in 2020.


Perspectives: Components of Children's Hospital 2020

The perspectives in the graphic above will be used in the physical and virtual environments to stimulate thoughts and ideas as participants describe quantitatively and qualitatively the future picture in 2020. These perspectives and questions are not exhaustive but rather, intended to stimulate ideation and give participants useful "buckets" in which to capture descriptors and ideas. It is important that participants transport themselves to 2020 and answer as if looking around at that time rather than through the lens of the current environment.

Institutional Culture

How do we treat each other in 2020? How do members of our "family" describe our work together? Open and honest? Transparent? How do we facilitate diversity and inclusion? Do we work effectively across departments and programs? How do we work with partners? How do we work with the State? How do we describe the working environment? What did we change? What are our employees and associates like? Compassionate? Entrepreneurial? Innovative? Consistent? Cautious? How many do we have? Recruitment and retention rates? Qualifications? What kind of an incentive program do we have in 2020? One in which performance-based compensation plays a major role, or one in which salary and wages are dominant?

Patients and Families

How satisfied are our patients and their parents? Where do we rate compared to the competition? How engaged are patients and their families in the care process? How do we tailor our continuum of care (e.g., telehealth, home care, in-patient, ambulatory) to their individual needs? Do patients and families recommend us to their neighbors? To newcomers? Why do they seek our care?

Quality and Safety

Are we the safest healthcare provider of children's services in America? In our market? To what extent are we using evidence based clinical practices? Do we intend to be first to market with new, commercially viable programs and services? Or do we want our innovation efforts to be primarily focused on continuous improvement of current services? Are we using LEAN and other continuous quality improvement tools in all of our core processes? Which ones? Are our decision-making structures and processes of high quality? Are we a safe environment for staff and other colleagues? How do we rank against our peers in quality and safety indicators and metrics across the board?

Medical Staff

How well regarded is the medical staff? How engaged is the medical staff in organizational strategy and operations? What percent of our medical staff are employed and/or contracted? What percent are independent community practitioners? How many physicians and advanced clinical practitioners do we have distributed throughout the community? How satisfied are members of the medical staff? Would they recommend that colleagues use our facilities?

Leadership and Governance

What leadership roles do we play pertaining to key local, state and national issues? How much do we influence local, state and national health policies? How effective is our governance process? How does governance affect our decision-making? Is the boundary between governance and management understood and managed well? Are we a stand-alone hospital? Are we a 501-c (3), independent hospital, with a regional health system, in a long-term Management Services Agreement with a system, affiliated, privately or publicly held corporation? Independent? Allied? How is our overall family of enterprises structured and managed?

Strategic Partnerships

With whom beyond our walls do we collaborate? Why are we a sought after partner? What specific types of partnerships exist? How many do we have? Where? What value do they produce - economic, political? What is our local/regional/national mix of partnerships and relationships? What do others think of us in various domains - clinical, education, innovation, diversity, service? For what are we most recognized? How are we viewed as a partner - nimble innovator, savvy, principled and disciplined? How are we involved in economic growth and development initiatives?

Community Involvement and Stakeholder Perceptions

Have we changed our role in the community or public health arena? As an organization? As individuals? Are we the leader in overall community pediatric 'wellness' in addition to acute care? Are we sought after as experts for the media? For community education programs? How are we facilitating improving the health status of the community? How much do we control? How much is done through collaboration? How are we involved in economic growth and development initiatives? How are we seen by other stakeholders - our community, physicians, employees, board, our patients, public officials, and our suppliers?

Clinical Enterprise

Do we have a distributed children's health system? What has evolved in our medical staff relationships - independent, contracted and employed? Are we a stand-alone hospital? Are we part of a larger health system? What level of integration do we have with other members of the pediatric community? Are our clinical centers of excellence hubs at Children's Hospital with distributed satellite operations? Do we have an extensive clinical affiliates program? How are referral relationships between primary care and specialist physicians? What volumes do we enjoy? What is our mix of inpatient versus outpatient volume and revenue? Is our equipment in the ambulatory setting and at the bedside leading edge?

Market Position and Brand

For what are we best known? How widely is that perception held? How are we seen by other stakeholders - our community, physicians, officers and employees, board, our patients, public officials, and our suppliers? What is our market share in key programs? Primary care? Cancer? Cardiovascular? Home care? Sophisticated ambulatory services? Intensive care services? What service areas are we in programmatically and geographically? What stays in our market versus being referred out? How are we seen by the media, insurance companies, and government buyers? Are we the low cost provider? The high quality provider? Both? How are we differentiated from the competition? Do we intend to create, drive, or trail the market? How do existing and prospective donors view us? Are we a desirable place to work? To invest a career?

Financial Performance

What has our financial profile become in 2020? How much do we retain earnings for reinvestment in new programs and services? How large is our endowment? What percentage of restricted versus unrestricted gifts exists? Do financial criteria dominate our service development decisions? How do we balance community need with financial criteria? Are we tracking direct and indirect benefits of all programs? Affiliates and partners? How much capital creation is accomplished through philanthropy versus debt? What percentage of total revenue comes from the state? What is our payer mix? What are our profit margins? Key financial ratios? What is the status of our physical infrastructure? Virtual infrastructure? Is it all on the Children's Hospital campus? How much of our infrastructure is distributed in satellite operations? How is it all linked? Do we have adequate facilities and equipment? Is our IS platform functioning such that we have valid digital clinical information at the point of service? Timely? High quality?