The Anonymous Administrator : 

Identifying misconceptions that lead to distrust

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In our “Anonymous Physician” column, we ask physicians for their take on the most pressing issues in healthcare and share their insights anonymously, giving them the freedom to be frank and uninhibited. 

 

To truly understand the industry’s top issues, we knew we needed to hear from administrators, too. That’s why we’re launching this column: The Anonymous Administrator. From time to time, we’ll pose a question to administrators and post their replies without revealing their identities, giving them the same opportunity to offer their honest opinions. 

 

It’s our hope that sharing the insights of physicians and administrators throughout the country will spark conversation and help our readers understand healthcare’s top issues from multiple points of view. 

 

For our first installment, we’re taking on the issue of misconception.    

 

The Issue: 

 

Oftentimes, conflicts between a hospital’s administration and medical staff are rooted in misconception. If these misconceptions aren’t addressed, they can lead to distrust, which damages a hospital’s culture and creates a poor working environment that could ultimately impact both physician and executive retention. 

 

The good news is, the first step in addressing misconceptions is simple: find out what they are. 

 

The Question:

 

What are the biggest misconceptions physicians have about their administration? 

 

The Answers:

 

Anonymous Administrator A

That we are looking to save dollars at physicians’ expense / staff’s expense when in fact we’re looking to be better stewards across the board to ensure we can pay top dollar to our most valuable resource: our staff and physicians.

 

There’s also a misunderstanding about antitrust and Stark laws, market ranges, and the importance of equity. These are real problems and big problems. We aren’t hiding behind excuses. These have major consequences.

 

And we don’t have banker’s hours. Most administrators work longer hours than many physicians and never “turn off.” We’re all struggling with work-life balance and sanity just like our docs. In the end, we all want the same things for ourselves and for our organization. Let’s figure it out together and support and appreciate each other. 

 

Anonymous Administrator B

 

That hospitals make a ton of money. Whereas in reality our average profit margin is 3% or below. 

 

Anonymous Administrator C

 

Physicians have the misconception that hospital administrators are only concerned about cost vs patient care. Most hospital administrators chose to work in healthcare based on their interest in providing resources needed to physicians and hospital staff to ensure that all patients’ experiences exceed their expectations.

 

I have worked in healthcare as a hospital administrator for 37 years. It is a privilege to work with physicians that recognize that it takes a team of healthcare providers and staff working together to achieve a common goal of providing excellent patient care. Unfortunately, too many physicians do not realize that healthcare is a team sport, and it is those hospitals and health systems that recognize the importance of physicians, administration, and staff working together that create excellence. Excellent physicians and administrators recognize the value of working together and supporting each other.

 

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