Sitting in the airport heading back east to visit family for the holidays for the first time since the pandemic began, I am energized and excited. For sure, anyone that knows me knows that I am all about the holidays and particularly spending time with my family and those I love most. More so, though, I am excited about what happened at Central Washington Family Medicine yesterday and the story it told about PCBH.
Most people that are familiar with CHCW and Bridget and me, we are all about data and tracking what we are doing. We have dashboards for days and a great IT and analytic team. Each morning, all the leadership within the organization gets an email updating us on visit volumes from the previous day. Basically, we know how productivity is going and then can project how handoffs and visits (our two primarily fidelity metrics) are doing for the month. December has been pretty impressive to start off with and as Bridget entered the clinic in the morning, she said to the nursing team, “I can feel it in my bones, it is going to be an intense day. There is a different energy today.” My mind predicts what Bridge was feeling is the engagement from the medical support staff, who are constantly combing through PCPs schedules searching for patients that we can see. Additionally, for one of the first times since COVID started, we had a full clinic of PCPs in the building. Indeed, there was a different energy in the building, there was the energy of primary care coming back to life.
Well, 12 hours later, the BHC team at CWFM saw 29 handoffs (at least that is the current confirmed count, there may be more). As we talk about regularly with our team, each one of these handoffs is a transcendent ripple that is improbable. 29 times a PCP or MA noticed a patient would benefit from a BHC visit. 29 times they explained bringing a BHC in a way that was kind, compassionate and stigma free. 29 times the patient courageously agreed. 29 times the BHC team answered the call (we did not miss a handoff yesterday) that reinforced to our PC team, WE ARE HERE! 29 times visits turned into moments of access, moments of context, moments of love. 29 times, our healthcare system became more radical, more compassionate, more contextual. And, to add, throughout our health system, the BHC team completed 105 visits with over 40 of them being handoffs. Again, 40 improbable and transcendent moments.
And, you know, the best part, at the end of the day and as we normally do, we emailed the entire BHC team and our C-suite to inform them of the record-breaking day (both for handoffs and total visits). My mind predicts the BHC team was for sure tired, and, damnit, they were fulfilled. The responses to the email included comments such as:
· This was so amazing!! LOVE LOVE LOVE everything about this!! This week I have been so keenly aware of how AMAZING this team truly is.
· The part that really stands out to me was that even after all this everyone’s energy was still really up and positive.
· So proud and inspired to be a part of this team with you all!
· Phenomenal teamwork today!!!! This is simply incredible!
· So proud to be a part of this team!! Awesome job everyone!!
· (and, my favorite) “Holy forking shirtballs” (for you “The Good Place” fans 😁 )
Then, from our leadership/C-suite:
· There must be scorch marks on the floors of our clinics! Get some much-deserved rest tonight!
· You are truly a phenomenal team!!
· Thank you sooo very much for serving our patients and community in the manner you do, and providing access to these services! I continue to be amazed at the work you all do!
For sure, my mind is thinking about the two weeks of PTO in front of me with family, that will for sure be healing. And, my mind cannot stop thinking of those moments, those comments, those Stories of PCBH. Hope you all have a healing and fulfilling end to the year. Gratitude for everyone doing this work and leaning in!