Creating the Science of Medicine at Wilmington Health

Many physicians think of themselves as singular artists who, with a few well-placed brushstrokes, can render a cure to almost any malady. But Jeff James, CEO at Wilmington Health in Wilmington, North Carolina, believes that kind of thinking needs to change. Physicians, he says, need to become more like scientists, meticulously building a care plan for individuals that is based in scientific fact and created in a team setting, rather than as isolated artists.

“The move toward value-based care is definitely a move from the art of medicine to the science of medicine,” says James, who has led Wilmington Health since 2008. “It’s a cultural transformation because it is dramatically different than the way most of our physicians have practiced medicine for most of their careers. For the first time, they’re going to be able to understand exactly — from a quality and cost perspective — what the value of their work is, and that is significantly different than it has been traditionally.”

James, in the short video The Science of Medicine, says his health care organization’s adoption of the Optum One software “allows us to start thinking differently and to realize that the current system of health care is unsustainable.”

Kelly Schaudt, senior director for Lean Operations at Wilmington Health, says using analytics has unlocked information that they didn’t know was there, specifically, “We use Optum One to identify patients who have gaps in care.”

See how Wilmington Health is using analytics to create value-based care in the video The Science of MedicineWillmington

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