Bill Sugg Valley County Health Systems

William T. Sugg on Data Governance for AI in Healthcare

Artificial intelligence (AI) has already made its way into the healthcare industry. It’s capable of learning and analyzing information and can be used for robot-assisted surgeries, administrative workflow assistance, virtual nursing assistants, and much more. Advanced AI technology has the potential to impact the lives of those in treatment significantly and can produce more accurate results by tracking data individually and on a mass scale. As the need for incorporating AI grows, so does the need for data governance.

William T. Sugg of Valley County Health Systems, a healthcare executive with more than 25 years of experience in the industry, explains why a regulated data governance framework is needed in the United States.

Currently, AI is being used with the primary focus of improving patient and consumer experiences. What many people don’t realize, however, is the potential for AI to provide medical breakthroughs. By reading and scanning test results, AI technology can relieve pressure from medical professionals and leave less room for error or an incorrect diagnosis. When thinking large scale, AI can track patient data from humans on a national or even global level, using that data to identify patterns. That data can be used to predict things like how an insurance claim will be processed, or how a disease may be effectively treated.

While these uses are incredibly beneficial, William T. Sugg explains that many people will be reluctant to give their personal data. Gaining patient consent and keeping their data highly secure are two significant problems facing the advancement of AI today. Many companies don’t realize the need for heavily investing in cybersecurity, which is why data regulation and governance is necessary. Patients must also be confident in knowing how their data will be used ethically.

William T. Sugg believes communication is key when informing the public on new AI technology in the healthcare industry. By providing transparency on how data is used and stored, patients will be more willing to offer their data for the advancement of science.

About William T. Sugg

William T. Sugg, also known as Bill Sugg, of Valley County Health Systems, has worked through almost every major crisis possible in a hospital setting, including deadly tornadoes, floods, fires, scandals and rebuilding the 17th most beautiful hospital in the United States. His leadership style is approachable, transparent, and people-centered. William T. Sugg believes in a strong teamwork culture that promotes respect, trust, commitment, and dedication to goals and values.

William T. Sugg on Data Governance for AI in Healthcare

Artificial intelligence (AI) has already made its way into the healthcare industry. It’s capable of learning and analyzing information and can be used for robot-assisted surgeries, administrative workflow assistance, virtual nursing assistants, and much more. Advanced AI technology has the potential to impact the lives of those in treatment significantly and can produce more accurate results by tracking data individually and on a mass scale. As the need for incorporating AI grows, so does the need for data governance.

William T. Sugg of Valley County Health Systems, a healthcare executive with more than 25 years of experience in the industry, explains why a regulated data governance framework is needed in the United States.

Currently, AI is being used with the primary focus of improving patient and consumer experiences. What many people don’t realize, however, is the potential for AI to provide medical breakthroughs. By reading and scanning test results, AI technology can relieve pressure from medical professionals and leave less room for error or an incorrect diagnosis. When thinking large scale, AI can track patient data from humans on a national or even global level, using that data to identify patterns. That data can be used to predict things like how an insurance claim will be processed, or how a disease may be effectively treated.

While these uses are incredibly beneficial, William T. Sugg explains that many people will be reluctant to give their personal data. Gaining patient consent and keeping their data highly secure are two significant problems facing the advancement of AI today. Many companies don’t realize the need for heavily investing in cybersecurity, which is why data regulation and governance is necessary. Patients must also be confident in knowing how their data will be used ethically.

William T. Sugg believes communication is key when informing the public on new AI technology in the healthcare industry. By providing transparency on how data is used and stored, patients will be more willing to offer their data for the advancement of science.

About William T. Sugg

William T. Sugg, also known as Bill Sugg, of Valley County Health Systems, has worked through almost every major crisis possible in a hospital setting, including deadly tornadoes, floods, fires, scandals and rebuilding the 17th most beautiful hospital in the United States. His leadership style is approachable, transparent, and people-centered. William T. Sugg believes in a strong teamwork culture that promotes respect, trust, commitment, and dedication to goals and values.

Bill Sugg - Nonprofit and For-Profit Hospitals

Bill Sugg Explains Key Differences of Nonprofit and For-Profit Hospitals

Bill Sugg finds hospital organizational structures to vary. 

Taxes

Bill Sugg - Nonprofit and For-Profit Hospitals
Bill Sugg – Nonprofit and For-Profit Hospitals

The first difference starts with tax status, which impacts not only the hospital but also the community it serves. For-profit hospitals must pay taxes to municipal and state governments, which in turn support schools, roads, and other public services. 

Bill Sugg explains that this also influences the hospital culture because for-profits generally need to be more cost-efficient. Paying high sales tax and property tax can be a burden on businesses.  Leaders must train employees to be conscious of costs and perform operational assessments regularly. By taking a closer look at operational costs, leaders can often find overlooked ways of saving money. 

Operational Discipline

For-profit hospitals are truly set apart by operational discipline, as leaders and executives work to achieve positive financial performance. Bill Sugg believes this is accomplished by enforcing accountability and performance efficiency throughout the workspace. Employees held accountable for their actions work harder to reach goals and deadlines; knowing a follow up will be conducted in the future.

Another useful tool commonly used in for-profit hospitals is detailed reporting. Bill Sugg notes that dashboard reports focused on finance and productivity metrics can help employees stay on track and realize how their contributions affect the company as a whole. 

Competition

The healthcare industry is slowly shifting its focus from the volume of patients to value of care. The appetite for success is still there, but leaders realize that by providing top-notch care, the volume of patients will increase as their reputation does. Bill Sugg explains that when it comes to negotiating care contracts, for-profit hospitals will look for leverage while nonprofits look for partnerships. This makes the negotiation aspect a much more aggressive process for for-profits. 

About Bill Sugg

William T. Sugg, also known as Bill Sugg, of Valley County Health Systems, has worked through almost every major crisis possible in a hospital setting, including deadly tornadoes, floods, fires, scandals and rebuilding the 17th most beautiful hospital in the United States. His leadership style is approachable, transparent, and people-centered. William T. Sugg believes in a strong teamwork culture that promotes respect, trust, commitment, and dedication to goals and values.

William T. Sugg - Artificial Intelligence Will Change Healthcare

William T. Sugg on How Artificial Intelligence Will Change Healthcare

Artificial intelligence is right around the corner, and William T. Sugg believes its impact will be truly life-changing.

Technology continues to advance rapidly, and something people thought was to be in the very far future, is actually very near. Investors have been pouring billions of dollars into research and development for artificial intelligence (AI), specifically in the healthcare industry. William T. Sugg describes AI as software that is capable of learning and analyzing information, even augmenting human activity. This translates into robot-assisted surgeries, administrative workflow assistance, virtual nursing assistants and more.

Although public and private sector investment is expected to surpass $6 billion dollars by 2021, AI applications are predicted to save $150 billion annually by 2026. These savings will steadily increase as time goes on, while completely reshaping the healthcare landscape.

William T. Sugg explains that AI applications could also greatly reduce the negative impacts caused by what is known as the “iron triangle” in healthcare. People deal with three connecting components of healthcare: access, affordability, and effectiveness. One of those three sides is typically a problem area, and when trying to fix one side, another suffers. With AI, however, many shortcuts can be created because the amount of required human labor will be reduced dramatically. Patients should be able to make positive changes without negatively impacting what they already have.
William T. Sugg notes that AI is already beginning its introduction into the healthcare industry in service operations, product development, human resources, supply chain management, marketing, sales, and more. These areas are mostly behind the scenes and out of the public eye. Further investment is mainly focused on three major categories: digitization, engagement, and diagnostics.

William T. Sugg is hopeful in regards to the future of AI and its great impact on patient care. With more support comes more availability to healthcare for all. This is especially important with the world’s quickly growing population and to those in rural areas.

About William T. Sugg

William T. Sugg of Valley County Health Systems has worked through almost every major crisis possible in a hospital setting, including deadly tornadoes, floods, fires, scandals and rebuilding the 17th most beautiful hospital in the United States. His leadership style is approachable, transparent, and people-centered. William T. Sugg believes in a strong teamwork culture that promotes respect, trust, commitment, and dedication to goals and

Bill Sugg - Struggling Community Hospitals

Bill Sugg’s Strategies for Struggling Community Hospitals

Community hospitals have been struggling in the healthcare industry as they face a variety of problems, forcing many to close up shop or file for bankruptcy. Rural hospitals are vital to those who live in farmlands or in the vast Midwest, meaning many people will have limited access to healthcare as small community hospitals continue to disappear. Healthcare executive, Bill Sugg, uses his 25+ years of experience in the industry to pinpoint issues community hospitals are facing, and how those issues can be overcome.

Patient Volume

One of the largest problems community hospitals face is the decreasing volume of patients who walk through the doors. Bill Sugg explains that this can be caused by the popularity of high-deductible health plans and larger centers that draw more people. To combat this, Bill Sugg suggests that leaders determine the root cause, whether that be a shrinking market or competitors. As larger healthcare systems use more marketing tactics and more sophisticated technologies, community hospitals must focus on staying known and monitoring reputation. Bill Sugg recommends creating a community engagement survey to target problems areas in the patient’s experience which could be giving the community a bad impression of the facility.

Technology Investments

When community hospitals are dealing with financial burdens, it can be quite challenging to invest in new medical technologies. However, Bill Sugg explains that prioritizing the purchase of the most needed medical devices will help keep community hospitals significant in the industry. Patients are looking for the centers where they can get the best care, which oftentimes means access the most up to date technologies. To increase opportunity and/or budget, Bill Sugg suggests community hospitals look into forming partnerships. This would allow smaller hospitals to stay independent while gaining access to new benefits they may otherwise not have had.

Merging

If partnerships are not available, the next step would be to consider looking for a larger healthcare system in the area who may want to join forces. Bill Sugg notes that it is very important to find another organization that has bountiful resources and an excellent vision for serving the smaller local area. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for the larger system to lose touch with the smaller local market after merging. Bill Sugg believes it is of utmost importance that the community’s needs are considered during the deal.

About Bill Sugg

Throughout his management career, William T. Sugg, also known as Bill, has worked through almost every major crisis possible in a hospital setting, including deadly tornadoes, floods, fires, scandals and rebuilding the 17th most beautiful hospital in the United States. His leadership style is approachable, transparent, and people-centered. William T. Sugg believes in a strong teamwork culture that promotes respect, trust, commitment, and dedication to goals and values.

Bill Sugg - Keeping Clinical Records

Bill Sugg Explains the Value of Keeping Clinical Records

Bill Sugg understands how documentation helps both the organization and the patient.

Providing excellent healthcare extends beyond just the treatment phase. Extensive paperwork and supporting documents can be tedious to complete and file and need to be stored in a safe and secure manner. These files, however, contribute to the overall quality of care for each and every patient. Bill Sugg, a healthcare executive with more than 25 years of experience in the industry, explains why clinical record keeping is an essential duty of reputable medical organizations.

Clinical notes consist of the documented medical history of a patient. Caregivers record relevant information to keep track of patients and use for future reference. Bill Sugg believes that if something is not written down, there is no proof it happened. Maintaining accurate records ensures consistency and builds trust between a patient and their caregivers.

According to Bill Sugg, it should also allow healthcare professionals to better communicate with each other. All staff members involved in providing care should update the clinical note file as needed, and refer to the notes of other physicians. Professionals can use the compiled information to make informed decisions about current and future care.

Bill Sugg states that it also greatly benefits the patients, who do not have to retake tests or try inappropriate treatments. Proper documents also save time and help patients get to the right treatment faster. If patients would like to see their entire medical file, it should be accessible to them. This helps patients keep track of all procedures and treatments performed in the past, which can help them consider what to try in the future.

A reputable healthcare organization will understand the importance of keeping clinical notes, and make sure the practice is properly enforced. Much like other businesses, hospitals can also be audited. Audits are necessary to monitor the quality of services and are useful when serious issues are under investigation. Clinical notes may also be required in a court of law.

With proper clinical note taking, Bill Sugg believes hospitals can maintain excellent quality of care and uphold accountability for their staff members. It truly is a win-win!

About Bill Sugg

Throughout his management career, William T. Sugg, also known as Bill, has worked through almost every major crisis possible in a hospital setting, including deadly tornadoes, floods, fires, scandals and rebuilding the 17th most beautiful hospital in the United States. His leadership style is approachable, transparent, and people-centered. William T. Sugg believes in a strong teamwork culture that promotes respect, trust, commitment, and dedication to goals and values.

William Sugg - Manage a Successful Hospital Merger

Manage a Successful Hospital Merger with William Sugg’s Key Tips

William T. Sugg shares how healthcare leaders can help employees focus on merger benefits and the organization’s future.

The healthcare industry is constantly experiencing change, and a recent national trend shows that independent hospitals have been consolidating. Hospitals must put together various approaches to adapt and overcome since the recent surge in merger and acquisition activity shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon. The pressure to increase service quality while reducing costs continues to rise, meaning some healthcare organizations just won’t be able to stand alone. 

William T. Sugg, a healthcare executive with more than 25 years of experience in the industry, understands the difficult challenges that lie ahead for these organizations. He shares key tips to manage a successful hospital merger. 

Over-Communicate

Management must create a formal communications plan, providing employees, stakeholders, and the public with as much transparency as possible. William T. Sugg believes updates should be given frequently and consistently to ensure a smooth transition. Leaders should routinely communicate both internally and externally with community members, crafting specific messages for different groups.

Unfortunately, uncertainty and fear are natural emotions that will be expressed by all those involved. William T. Sugg explains that with a successful communication plan, management can focus on the organization’s main goals and the benefits that will arise. Everyone wants to know how the merger will affect them personally, and clarity will bring with it an internal consensus for change.

Blend Workplace Culture

Management should have an excellent understanding of the workplace cultures from both organizations. William T. Sugg explains that culture is a combination of beliefs, norms, values, organizational style, communication methods, and more. By evaluating both organizations, leaders can take the best of each and use it to leverage an even better-combined organization. 

Too often are organizational similarities and differences ignored in the early stages of mergers and acquisitions. By making workplace culture a priority from the beginning, leaders can identify areas of potential incompatibility and draft a plan to solve the issue before it even arises. William T. Sugg suggests that planning ahead can help to build a new, strong culture despite all the change. 

About William T. Sugg

Throughout his management career, William T. Sugg, also known as Bill, has worked through almost every major crisis possible in a hospital setting, including deadly tornadoes, floods, fires, scandals and rebuilding the 17th most beautiful hospital in the United States. His leadership style is approachable, transparent, and people-centered. William T. Sugg believes in a strong teamwork culture that promotes respect, trust, commitment, and dedication to goals and values. 

Establishing Effective Communication in Healthcare with William T. Sugg

With proper communication comes workplace efficiency, which can be established using William T. Sugg’s 3 tips.

Communication is the transfer and understanding of meaning between a sender and a receiver. William T. Sugg stresses that communication is one of the most crucial factors affecting the efficiency of an organization. Organizational communication is a collection of interactions, decisions, interpretations, and actions throughout the organization. When it comes to hospitals and healthcare, effective communication is truly the difference between life and death.
With more than 25 years of experience as a healthcare executive, William T. Sugg, founder of a 501c (3) Healthcare Foundation and a Corporate University, lists his suggestions for establishing effective communication within your organization.

Defined Hierarchy

An organizational structure dictates how the supervision, allocation of tasks, and task coordination are directed to achieve the organization’s primary objectives. If the organizational structure is not consistent and efficient, there is a greater chance of confusion and mistakes. William T. Sugg suggests implementing defined hierarchy channels of communication. This prevents discrepancies in what is expected or needed by upper level management. Objectives can effectively be communicated down the chain of command quickly without hesitation or delay.
Accuracy

Williiam T. Sugg notes that two key factors to effective downward communication channels is the accuracy and speed of information. Communications should be as simple as possible and easy to understand across various departments. Effective communication channels that enhance the speed and accuracy include email, instant message, or mobile communication. Employees can use messages as reference to their job task or objective. Face to face communication has been shown to increase the chances of misinformation being passed downward. Almost everyone has played the game telephone where the message is whispered around a circle of players and at the end of the circle, the last person recites the message. More often than not, that message is vastly different than what was originally said.

Transparency

Receiving clear direction is crucial, but William T. Sugg also highlights the importance of management’s attitude towards receiving criticism. When management allows constructive criticism or concerns to be communicated upward, there is greater mutual trust between employees and upper level management. Management does not have the ability to be everywhere at all times. Team members need to be able to communicate what they are experiencing to their superiors to give management visibility of constraints. To prevent the distrust, upper management needs to be as transparent as possible, providing clear directions and intent, as well as be receptive to criticism. If management refuses to hear the employee’s perspective, it can create serious issues within the organization in morale, retention rates, and long term problems that may continue to build if they go unaddressed.

William T. Sugg - People-Oriented Management Style

The Benefits of a People-Oriented Management Style with William T. Sugg

William T. Sugg explains why leaders should focus on their employees instead of on tasks.

Leaders are faced with the difficult decision of choosing the best management style for their organization. Choosing the right management style is essential in ensuring the success and retention of employees. If led the wrong way, team members can become discouraged, disorganized and unproductive.

Two of the most common management styles are task-oriented and people-oriented. In a task-oriented management style, employees focus on tasks that must be accomplished in order to reach goals or meet a performance standard. A people-oriented management style is exactly as it sounds. Leaders build relationships with employees and include them in company operations.

After 25 years of experience as a healthcare executive, William T. Sugg explains why a people-oriented management style is effective in a hospital setting.

People-oriented leadership should incorporate coaching since the main focus is building relationships with employees, the biggest asset of an organization. William T. Sugg believes that coaching employees will help them find their strengths and weaknesses. Identifying weaknesses is key to creating strategies for improvement and can lead to better communication and open dialogue between all levels of an organization. Over time, leaders will appear less intimidating and employees will feel valued for providing their input on the situation at hand.

Another great advantage of incorporating a people-oriented management style is the boost in employee engagement and morale. William T. Sugg explains that employees don’t feel as criticized or looked down upon by upper management, and see a bright future with room to grow, learn, and develop. Team members are more engaged in their tasks and know exactly what to work on, leading to a more productive and efficient staff.

When thinking about the future of a company, William T. Sugg knows that employees who are valued and proficient in their trade will ultimately perform at a higher level and have longer retention rates. This cuts down on the cost and time required to constantly hire new employees at a company with a high turnover rate. William T. Sugg knows that training new employees to be as efficient as long-term employees are very time-consuming for an organization trying to be efficient.

About William T. Sugg

Throughout his management career, William T. Sugg, also known as Bill, has worked through almost every major crisis possible in a hospital setting, including deadly tornadoes, floods, fires, scandals and rebuilding the 17th most beautiful hospital in the United States. He is a politically astute healthcare executive with more than 25 years of experience. His leadership style is approachable, transparent, and people-centered. William T. Sugg believes in a strong teamwork culture that promotes respect, trust, commitment, and dedication to goals and values.

William T. Sugg Explains Why Strategic Planning is Key to Success

Healthcare executive, William T. Sugg, breaks down the benefits of implementing strategic plans.

The healthcare industry is constantly changing and progressing as new technologies become readily available, and new methods of treatment are discovered. As with any organization, it’s crucial to prepare for the future and plan for the unknown. After 25 years of experience as a healthcare executive, William T. Sugg knows the value of creating a strategic plan for more efficiency in every department of an organization.

Simply put, a strategic plan allows leaders to set goals for an organization and map out a plan to reach said goals in the future. William T. Sugg believes that healthcare planning in particular should consider things like potential government policy changes, advancements in technology, and economic trends that might impact operations. This will help leaders recognize major external trends amongst other benefits, explained by William T. Sugg.

Clarity in Crisis

Sudden incidents can cause confusion and panic amongst employees and patients alike. William T. Sugg knows that with a properly executed plan, communication and clarity can calm seemingly disastrous matters. Employees should have the confidence needed to carry out their individual responsibilities in a variety of circumstances and be prepared for the psychological commitment they have to the organization.

Victory in Vision

Strategic planning is the life line of an organization. William T. Sugg explains that when a vision is developed and shared amongst all team members, everyone is on the same page working to achieve the same end goals. Employees can operate with a focus on vision instead of on daily circumstances. It will inspire team members and connect everyone with the excitement of the future.

Energy in Engagement

Studies have shown that employee engagement directly relates to the success of an organization. The level of discretionary effort given on the job, and the expression of company beliefs made by both teams and individuals plays a crucial role in retention rates and employee happiness. When employees can be encouraged and inspired to go above and beyond minimum standards, William T. Sugg believes that an organization can really be set apart and transformed into one of the best. An excellent leader can help inspire employees to believe in the organization’s vision.

Consensus in Collaboration

When a team is working together on a project, it’s very important they all work from the same foundation. Communication is critical to the success of a healthcare organization, and employees must not waste time disagreeing over rules, regulations, or procedures. William T. Sugg recommends using a strategic plan to align all employees and support a healthy environment.

About William T. Sugg

Throughout his management career, William T. Sugg, also known as Bill, has worked through almost every major crisis possible in a hospital setting, including deadly tornadoes, floods, fires, scandals and rebuilding the 17th most beautiful hospital in the United States. He is a politically astute healthcare executive with more than 25 years of experience. His leadership style is approachable, transparent, and people centered. William T. Sugg believes in a strong teamwork culture that promotes respect, trust, commitment, and dedication to goals and values.