Next Stop: Boston

Things are busy around here. We are hosting our first Advisory Group meeting this week, and then heading to community #2, Boston, Massachusetts.

While there, we will be observing practices at Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates, who operate MyHealth Online, Partners Healthcare, who operate Patient Gateway, and East Boston Neighborhood Health Center.

How do we set these up and what do we do? First, we establish contact with the appropriate leader in the organization who is willing to let Josh Seidman and/or myself observe the process of care. In the case of this community, we’ve really been helped by Joe Kimura, MD from Harvard Vanguard/Atrius Health, Jonathan Wald, MD from Partners Healthcare, and Frances Kuebler, MD, from East Boston Neighborhood Health Center. Even with an introduction from a leader in the organization, there is still some relationship building that needs to happen with busy clinicians, and I will typically do that on the spot. In the case of Harvard Vanguard, I have already met the clinicians who are allowing me to watch the process of care.

Speaking of naming names, Neil Calman, MD asked me a provocative question, about the naming of individuals I shadow (not the patients, their experience is always protected). I have always assumed in a public space like this that not everyone wants to be explicitly named. On the other hand, I haven’t minded being named in another person’s blog as long as the reference is accurate.

So, with this trip, I am going to ask the question about attribution to those who I work with, as a little informal poll.

To the readers of this blog – what do you think – is it useful to the story to hear specifics about the practitioners we work with? Thanks for the input.


Hi Ted:
Can I answer my own question? My most recent blog on the state of managed care in the New York City Health and Hospitals Corp was picked up by them – perhaps through a search under the name of their President who I had called. He responded with a very articulate explanation of the reasons behind their change in policy. This added much to the intelligence of the discussion. One point about names is that it is a way for people to find what is written that concerns them and be able to respond.
I also think that peoples' good work should be attributed to them.

Of course, and I noticed! I thought it was pretty impressive, and as a reader I thought very informative and real. I have been telling folks in some circles that writing an organization to provide feedback is OUT. Blogging about it so they pick it up on a Google search is IN.

I am going to go with your guidance on this and see how it goes. One big PDCA cycle. We'll adjust as we go. Look for the changes as we head to Boston next week. Thanks for continuing to lead!

Ted Eytan, MD