Wednesday, October 12, 2016

MI2's "Altered States and Extreme Conditions" Symposium

Last week I attended Mi2 annual innovation forum - this year the topic was "Altered States and Extreme Conditions." This very interesting event was a highlight for MedStar 300-400 associates from across the system.

Topics ranged from hypnotism to trancendance to patient care in the ebola outbreak- and that was just before lunch!  I loved the presentation by Ken Stanley on why greatness can not be planned.  He used a series of pictures that form randomly and how they create images that were fascinating and beautiful and would not have happened if you tried.  I already bought his book!

One presentation that stuck out after lunch was by Jonathan Davis, MD, the academic chair of emergency medicine. Appropriately titled “It’s Right After Lunch…and I’m Sleepy”, it highlighted the effects of sleep deprivation on our lives. Not just our lives at work, but also at home. The striking effects of sleep deprivation lead not just to poor inter-personal relationships and unpleasant moods, but to making errors at work. In the case of an accountant, maybe the form gets missed or a decimal moved. In the case of our researchers and physicians, there are patient lives at stake. It highlights the commitment we’ve made to be an HRO and the steps we need to take to get there.

The final presentation of the day was also a highlight. Michael Gillam presented on “Lessons from Laughter”. A great end to the day, with some laughter, he also pointed out one fact that explained why he was here presenting on altered states and extreme conditions: every patient who enters a MedStar facility is in an extreme state. Maybe they are visiting a sick friend, caring for a chronically ill partner, following up on the care of their child; each of these situations that bring patients to MedStar is an extreme condition for their lives. Laughter is a way to say that the pain that they are feeling is ok. It’s something to keep in mind each time you interact with patients.

There was some great twitter action on the hashtag #mi2forum and I was able to grab some pictures too!

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