Week 2 – We Have Work To Do

I learned more last week, but most importantly, I learned from you. At the end of my last note, I deployed a rudimentary survey to begin a conversation about nine areas that I proposed represent important areas in which we could begin to evaluate, where we are now as a department of medicine (DoM) and where we need be. Thanks to the 400 of you who responded to the survey and the many who provided comments (12 pages!). 62% of the respondents were Faculty, 9% trainees and 29% Staff. I appreciate the time that many of you took to submit comments. I particularly enjoyed reading the constructive feedback from those of you, who are better trained in quantitative survey methodology than me, regarding how to make the survey better… Send me a note and I will consult you next time! That said, I believe that there is much to learn from this initial conversation with you. 60% rated us overall between 3 and 4 out of 5, 13% rated 5/5. Generally speaking, you indicated a level of satisfaction in many areas but clearly indicated that we have a way to go to achieve our full potential across all missions. I will be analyzing the surveys and will report on them in more detail in future communications. Today, I will focus at a high level on what I learned from the comments. 

You are passionate about your respective missions, but aspire to collaborate, because we are one department. We should work towards removing silos and facilitate opportunities for this to take place. Burnout is real, and a focus on supporting faculty and trainees, particularly in clinical areas should be high priority. You support a culture in which investigation and research are valued. We must be cognizant of the need to remain competitive in our compensation and to focus on recruitment and retention of the best talent. Transparency is important. Finally, many of you expressed the importance of providing services to the underserved and disadvantaged in our community. This commitment to health equity and justice was highlighted last week in our Grand Rounds “On Equity Story Slam” (available on DOM TV).  There, 7 of our faculty and one resident, shared personal stories about their roles in the care of patients, all of which underscored their commitment to providing care to the most medically underserved or marginalized in our community and challenging all of us and our organization to do more. As I reflected on what I heard in Grand Rounds and as I read these comments, particularly on Martin Luther King Holiday, I am reminded that the mission that he lived and died for is far from complete.

So, we have work to do, and as we begin to develop a strategic plan and vision that will take our department where we all want it to be, I look forward to continuing this conversation as we work together. As I said upon reporting for duty, I firmly believe that with your support, the best is yet to come for the DoM.



Our cars arrived last week, so DMV next, we still have boxes to unpack, but all the socks are now accounted for.

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