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PacMed Update: Identifying Patient Satisfaction

Published November 10, 2014

PacMed is known in the community as one of the highest quality, lowest cost providers in western Washington. Their focus on and commitment to patient satisfaction is also worth noting, as PacMed has some of the highest patient satisfaction rates nationally. Providence and Swedish emphasize these outcomes as well. To understand better what it is about PacMed’s culture that has made it so successful,  Providence and PacMed recently conducted a culture assessment, with the goal of understanding what aspects of the PacMed culture could be considered best practice, so that we can preserve these elements and share the learnings with other medical groups across Providence.

Through the culture assessment, we have identified what has worked so well for PacMed and the behaviors and values that have helped shape outcomes. The culture assessment will be particularly valuable as we work toward our shared strategic goals in the area of population health. Some of the defining characteristics include:

  • Strong focus on enabling the best patient outcomes
  • Culture of collaboration where each employee feels valued
  • Willingness to put team needs first
  • High level of community engagement
  • Focus on results
  • Transparency
  • Respect for diversity, with patients as well as staff

 Although specific cultures across Providence, Swedish and the new affiliates often vary, our common commitment to the patients and communities we serve makes us natural collaborators. Providence and Swedish are already benefiting from the expertise of PacMed. For example, Dr. Rick Ludwig, medical director for US Family Health Plan (USFHP) and clinical integration officer for PacMed, now plays a key leadership role as chief medical officer of the Providence-Swedish Health Alliance, an accountable care organization that partners with employers and payers to meet the needs of specific populations of patients.

This culture assessment is only part of getting to know each other’s organizations and the resources we each bring to support and strengthen our partnership. Regular communication about the affiliation, like this message, is designed to help us better share our stories.

 The values and behaviors identified by the culture committee reflect a strong alignment with values shared across Providence in all five states. While Providence offers access to resources only a large health system can support, it also looks to PacMed as an example of how to provide exceptional quality and value to patient populations as we navigate a changing health care environment together. The work of the culture team on the Transition Committee is designed to keep us on track as we collaborate to create healthier communities, together.