News+Notes is written for staff who provide and support patient care in our hospital system. UF Health Shands CEO Ed Jimenez answers questions in each edition. To celebrate National Doctors’ Day, we chatted with both Jimenez and Joseph A. Tyndall, M.D., M.P.H., UF College of Medicine interim dean. Tyndall joined UF in 2006 as vice chair of emergency medicine and took the helm as division chair in 2008. He was named interim dean in July 2018.
In your opinion, what sets our medical staff apart from doctors in other organizations?
EJ: In our hospitals and outpatient programs, we work side by side with incredible physicians. They have the knowledge, insight, skills and leadership abilities that come from practicing in an academic setting. They don’t just provide clinical care for patients, they also conduct scientific research and train tomorrow’s health professionals. Education and discovery are part of the everyday experience here. They do groundbreaking work. It’s thrilling to be among doctors who have their level of expertise and specialization. We believe in our physicians and we appreciate how much they value their colleagues and the collaborative approach. It’s a beautiful dynamic.
JAT: UF is a Top 8 public institution with Top 5 aspirations. Our national rankings as an academic health system continue to rise as well. This is happening because we are able to attract and retain talented faculty who conduct high-impact research, provide quality care for patients and teach the next leaders in medical education. We also are a destination for many patients who consider this the best option in our region. It is clear that we also have distinguished ourselves as a destination for talented faculty who want to make a difference. They seek us out as much as we seek them.
Can you explain the role of faculty physicians in the hospital system?
EJ: Every day, our patients require medical care and that care is delivered by an interdisciplinary team here at UF Health. At the helm of every clinical team are our College of Medicine faculty physicians. Just as with other types of teams, there has to be a visionary person, an organizer. Sometimes they’re thought of as captains or coaches … They guide, support, oversee and mentor. Our faculty physicians set the course for the treatment of each patient. They have to establish great communication and connection for the team. The beauty of this is that as care proceeds, others get to take on the leadership baton: The faculty physician leader gathers information with the team and decides what the patient needs, and the lead nurse takes charge and guides the clinical team in implementing the approach and moving it forward. They work together to synchronize all the moving parts to the best of their abilities. Our faculty have great leadership attributes; they know how to build trust and connections. They see what needs to get done and they empower others.
How would you characterize the relationship between our UF College of Medicine faculty physicians and UF Health Shands staff?
JAT: Every day, we see great examples of faculty and staff working together as teams to care for their patients. This includes in our disaster preparedness with the recent (January) I-75 tragedy and in the routine care provided daily in our hospitals and outpatient settings. It isn’t just about UF Health physicians and staff. It’s also about our learners — both student and resident physicians. This year we were named a finalist for the Arnold P. Gold Foundation’s Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education’s Dewitt Baldwin Award. This national award recognizes our outstanding learning environment and the roles that our health system and our medical education programs play in creating an environment that delivers the highest-quality care, which is our continual aspiration. This recognition is evidence of the high impact of strong relationships between physicians and staff in our hospitals.
Join us in honoring our physicians at UF Health by wearing red on National Doctors’ Day, March 30.
HAVE A QUESTION FOR THE CEO? Email Kim Rose, director of strategic communications with UF Health Communications, at email@example.com and she’ll share your question with Ed Jimenez for an upcoming CEO column.