Army Medicine Begins with the BASICS
June 26, 2012
Each of us wishes to create the very best care and service experience for those we serve. What do we do when we are told someone is angry with us for what they perceive as less than best care and service? How do we handle the news of being criticized for something in our enterprise for which we are completely oblivious? Our beneficiaries have a basic assumption that the healthcare services they seek will meet their expectations. If these expectations are met then they are satisfied. Moreover, if these expectations are exceeded the patient is delighted with the care experience.
Every point in the healthcare experience can be service excellence. Army Medicine is capitalizing on those opportunities by implementing Begin with the BASICS, which is an interpersonal toolkit for all staff to utilize in the delivery of care, service, and service recovery. Attendees are guided through an analysis of their role, service contact points for which they are responsible, and the necessary skills to provide excellent service.
Army Medicine's work to develop BASICS began in the summer of 2008. We looked at existing initiatives, "Patient Centered Care", the "Medical Home" model, "TeamSTEPPS", and what was learned from the "Disney Institute" training in early 2008. The product as we recognize it today was introduced in September 2010. The program has had two notable names "Back to the BASICS" from September 2010 to January 2012. Early this year it was rebranded for delivery to an Army Medicine wide audience to what we know it as today "Begin with the BASICS".
Mr. Fred Larson, Begin with the BASICS Coordinator and Special Assistant with the Surgeon General's Office, stated "the principle goal of, Begin with the BASICS is to transform the culture of Army Medicine to embrace our core values and practice them in all our affairs. BASICS serve to establish a self-sustaining culture, adverse to bad behavior and poor performance. We become institutionally intolerant to anything less than our Best."
The acronym BASICS stands for: Break Barriers, Anticipate and Accommodate, Seek Solutions, Initiate and Interact, Communicate, Service Recovery. During training Army Medicine personnel are taught about each component of BASICS. Beginning with Break Barriers; which is to overcome obstacles in order to provide great service. Participants consider resources, processes, procedures, policies and even mindset when they look at how to break barriers. Anticipate & Accommodate is to be aware of what patients, their families, and coworkers need and to take action. Seek solutions by acknowledging problems and doing everything you can to find a solution. Initiate and interact means always being the one to make contact and offer assistance. It's always worth it even if you get a negative response. Communication is a two-way process of reaching mutual understanding and that the majority of our communication is non-verbal. Service Recovery is the essence of trust driven care or an excellent service experience.
Army Medicine is building new relationships, delivering care and meeting the needs of those we serve. We are doing what we were intended to do and that's treat people in a way that we ourselves would want to be treated. We positively influence the life space and ensure a better outcome, a better tomorrow. When solutions are found, we build lasting relationships with those we serve through a Spirit of Service.