Thursday, March 17, 2016

Kindred's Obsession with Numbers to Grow Exponentially


A Kindred executive once told me data is the only thing that matters, that staff achieve the targeted numbers or they're gone.  That person used intimidation and fear without any understanding that bullying distorted the accuracy of the very data they'd received.

Rather than remove the fear and intimidation, such that people can gain a common understanding of what's happening, this Machiavellian leader's solution to data distortion was to automate data collection as much as possible.  Removing the worker from the data generation chain, then beating them up for unfavorable outcomes is a form of dehumanization.

Kindred is doubling down on their numbers obsession strategy with a new effort.

Predictive analytics is the use of data, statistical algorithms and machine-learning techniques to identify the likelihood of future outcomes based on historical data.

Our hospice has a new predictive service index score for each patient.  I asked an experienced hospice nurse about the PSI score.  They said, "That number is useless."

It feels like management wants to play with numbers rather than talk to hospice clinicians.  The number enables managers to order quantifiable amounts of specific disciplines from the hospice team.  It does not feel like a tool for decision making or resource allocation.  It's a buffer or bumper from having to talk with real hospice professionals about what is going on and what the patient and caregivers truly need.

The "likelihood of future outcomes" is probability which is based on a number of theoretical distributions that rarely exist in the real world.  It reaffirms my belief that Kindred executives, like their Gentiva brethren before them, live in their own world.  It rarely makes contact with the world our hospice team works in.

Anonymous (from Dredkin)  

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