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How to right-size organizational commitment to CVR

September 17, 2020

    Over the years of partnering with health systems on care variation reduction (CVR), we've seen one fundamental pitfall come up time and again: organizations setting highly aspirational system-level goals for CVR—often multi-million dollars in cost-savings and quality improvements—but failing to put the organizational muscle required to reach a goal of that size behind it.

    Access our CVR Opportunity Assessment to size your hospital or system's CVR cost savings goal

    Why organizations fail to meet system-level goals

    At best, this disconnect between ambition and organizational commitment causes organizations to fall short of their goal; at worst, it leads to inefficiencies and wasted time. The good news is that solving that disconnect is within reach. The reality is that many organizations have made progress even with limited resources. The key to success is to align your system's CVR goal (both the size and timeline) with your system's level of organizational commitment to CVR.

    Covid-19 has likely impacted that alignment for your organization one way or another. For example, some members report having less staff capacity for CVR due to redeployment and furloughs. Others report that frontline clinicians are more accepting of centralized guidelines in this moment and are enjoying newfound momentum for CVR. Either way, now is the time to reevaluate your CVR strategy to ensure your organization is well-aligned to achieve the goals you're aspiring to.  

    Checklist of organizational commitments to CVR

    Defining what you need is the first step. To help, we've created a checklist to determine whether you've got the level of organizational commitment you need to scale CVR across your system and unlock significant cost savings. While this list isn't fully comprehensive, it's representative of the six critical factors we hear time and again from organizations that have successfully scaled their CVR efforts.  

    Ultimately, you need a level of organizational commitment that will support the size of your CVR goal—and there is no one right approach for realignment. Some organizations that have identified a commitment gap might be in a position to close it now. Others might need to take a different approach and adjust the goal itself—either by revising the quantitative number they're aiming for, or the timeline they're going to take to get there.

    The only wrong answer is to stop pursing CVR altogether. Given all of the short-term cost savings levers that health systems are pulling right now, leaders will need CVR to in order to unlock bigger cost savings down the line.

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