Resource Library

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Trustee Articles
Is granting an outgoing trustee ‘emeritus status’ a thing of the past?
Trustee Articles
Millennials use the health care system in a unique way. Trustees must be attentive to their views and recruit them to the board for its long-term sustainability.
Trustee Articles
The following is intended to be an example that boards should adapt to meet their individual needs. Effective governance depends on the right mixture of skills, experience, personal qualities and diversity among the members of the hospital board.
Trustee Articles
In 2009 the AHA’s Blue Ribbon Panel on Trustee Core Competencies identified two sets of competencies that focused on the knowledge, skills and personal capabilities needed by trustees of hospitals and health systems to govern effectively.
Trustee Articles
Even before the Enron scandal, which featured directors who didn’t understand the company’s complex financial transactions, and before the Sarbanes‐Oxley Act required publicly owned corporations to disclose whether their boards include directors with financial expertise, it should have been self‐evident that relevant knowledge and experience are prerequisites for effective governance.  
Trustee Articles
Because of this generation’s size and increasing influence, Millennials are being surveyed and studied to better understand what makes them tick and how they may play a role in fundamentally reshaping how we live, work—and govern—our organizations.
Trustee Articles
Several events can lead to a decision to down-size a board. In some cases, the trigger is a merger or an acquisition in which seating all legacy directors would result in a large, unwieldy board or produce an imbalance favoring one of the combining parties. In other cases, a large board simply decides its present size is an impediment to efficient and effective governance.
Trustee Articles
More and more boards are adopting the practice of using competency-based criteria to select governing board members. They identify the subject areas and behavioral qualities needed from trustees and apply them to recruitment, orientation, leadership development, succession planning and periodic evaluation.
Trustee Articles
A board member/trustee with a nursing background brings a unique voice to governance conversations focused on the Triple Aim. Nurses bring expertise in and valuable perspectives about community health, quality, safety, patient experience, workforce development, staff engagement and financial stewardship.
Trustee Articles
The role of a health care organization trustee gets more complicated and more sophisticated every day. Pressures are increasing simultaneously for higher quality, lower cost, more transparency and accountability, and use of evolving and evermore expensive technology.
Trustee Articles
As health care organizations become more complex and diverse, their governance requires individuals with a range of knowledge, skills and behaviors that can address the needs and challenges of these evolving enterprises. As their organizations mature, effective boards update how their members are selected, often moving away from informal, relationship based board composition to a more intentional, competency-based process.
Trustee Articles
A decade ago, BoardSource, an organization supporting nonprofit boards, developed a well known list of aspirational principles of governance. For us they still ring true: “mission driven,” “ethos of transparency,” “compliance with integrity.”
Trustee Articles
In many ways, women are on the front line in health care — as consumers, employees and family caretakers. They possess firsthand knowledge of community health issues and needs. They can bring an informed perspective to health care and other community organizations about where to focus resources to have the greatest impact.
Trustee Articles
In July 2011, five national health associations jointly urged hospital and health system leaders to take three steps to help eliminate health disparities and improve quality of care. These steps called for increasing...
Trustee Articles
Most boards I know were built by recruiting business leaders, physicians and clergy, and it’s important to have broad community representation among trustees. Increasingly, however, boards are recruiting new members by using a skills-based approach aligned with the organization’s strategic needs, including the need for information technology expertise. This is where “digital directors” come in.
Trustee Articles
Recruiting board members is a challenge for every hospital and health system, but the task is particularly difficult in small communities. At Benefits Health System, Great Falls, Mont., our pool of candidates is largely limited to the city’s 60,000 residents, despite the fact that we are the tertiary referral center for a population of 250,000 across nearly 40,000 square miles of rural Montana.
Trustee Articles
Given the sweeping changes in health care, forward-thinking hospitals, systems and medical centers are carefully evaluating board member succession and recruitment. The challenging environment in which these organizations operate requires strong, knowledgeable boards whose members have deep insights into the field and a fundamental understanding of business, management practices and how to compete in a highly competitive market.
Trustee Articles
Bringing new members onto the board has its challenges. In small or rural communities, the pool of potential trustees is often limited, with desirable candidates already serving on multiple boards. Even in bigger urban areas, it sometimes seems the same people rotate on and off the boards of larger community organizations — the Rotary Club, the chamber of commerce, the hospital.
Trustee Articles
Health care organization trusteeship is getting more complicated and challenging as pressures to improve quality and safety, reduce costs, increase transparency and accountability, and use changing and evermore-expensive technology converge. At the same time, hospitals face increasing competition from unexpected sources for patients and for professionals in critical disciplines.
Trustee Articles
The 2007 report of the Blue Ribbon Panel on Health Care Governance focused on building a foundation for exceptional governance and included several tools and practices to help boards move from good to great performance.