USC Consulting Group's Chris Saunders Named to Society of Critical Care Medicine Advocacy Committee

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Team to address workforce and reimbursement issues, disaster preparedness.

Christopher Saunders, RN, a senior healthcare consultant with Tampa-based USC Consulting Group, LLC (USCCG), has been invited to serve on the Society of Critical Care Medicine's (SCCM) Advocacy Committee for a three-year term.

The SCCM Advocacy Committee is comprised of a number of organization members from the multi-professional team that monitors advocacy issues, consults with the SCCM Council, and works with decision-makers concerning health policy. The Advocacy Committee is an ongoing part of SCCM's commitment to public service and securing the highest quality care for all critically ill patients.    

The Society's Council charged the Advocacy Committee with the task of prioritizing a list of projects and initiatives, which were affirmed in 2006. They include:

  • Workforce issues: A key policy issue facing critical care is that of the workforce shortage, and the Society has worked consistently to raise awareness and propose solutions -- both independently and in collaboration with others.
  • Reimbursement issues: The Medicare Physician Payment Schedule continues to be a key issue in the health care community, and affects many members of the critical care team. SCCM, working collaboratively with such other medical societies as the American Medical Association, makes every effort to help policy makers understand that appropriate reimbursement for the delivery of critical care is vital to ensuring the availability of trained professionals.
  • Disaster preparedness: Preparing medical facilities and professionals to best manage the effects of natural disasters, terrorist attacks, mass trauma, pandemics and epidemics is a high priority.

Mr. Saunders said of his appointment, "I'm honored and delighted to serve on this committee. As someone who is actively involved in improving healthcare, I recognize the importance of educating hospital executives, policy makers, employers, and the community about critical care medicine and welcome a role in this effort.

"This medical specialty has been recognized as a board certified clinical specialty since 1987, yet only ten percent of hospitals have implemented the physician model, which requires an intensivist to be present in the ICU. Taking care of patients in the ICU with an intensivist-led multi-disciplinary team has proven to reduce patient mortality, decrease complications during an ICU stay, and shorten both ICU and hospital length of stay."

About Christopher Saunders, RN, MHSA

Chris Saunders is a senior healthcare consultant with USC Consulting Group, LLC (USCCG). He has been providing clinical leadership for the firm's healthcare practice since 1997. He also serves as primary nurse care coordinator at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. He has 19 years of experience in critical care nursing, intermediate care, surgical step-down and liver transplant settings. During his tenure with USCCG, he has worked with such clients as HCA, St. David's Healthcare, South West Texas Methodist Healthcare System, and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

Mr. Saunders holds a BSN from Waynesburg College and an MHSA from the University of St. Francis. His professional credentials include Critical Care Registered Nurse (CCRN), Certified Clinical Transplant Nurse (CCTN), Operational Leaders Certification from Development Dimensions International, and graduation from the Perfecting Patient Care University, the Toyota Production Model in the healthcare setting. He is a member of the Nurse Navigator Fellowship, Pittsburgh Regional Healthcare Initiative and is a member of the Advocacy Committee for the Society of Critical Care Medicine.

About the Society of Critical Care Medicine

The Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) is the only professional organization devoted exclusively to the advancement of multi-professional critical care medicine through excellence in patient care, education, research, and advocacy.

SCCM has a worldwide membership of more than 13,000 from a diverse group of highly trained professionals including intensivists, critical care nurses, critical care pharmacists/pharmacologists, respiratory therapists, technicians and social workers. The Society was created in 1970 to educate medical professionals and the community about the need for intensivists and critical care practitioners. The organization is headquartered in Des Plaines, IL.

About USC Consulting Group

USC Consulting Group, LLC (http://www.usccg.com) is an independent management consulting firm headquartered in Tampa, FL, with offices in Chicago, Montreal and Toronto. USCCG helps hospitals adapt as the hospital environment changes by providing the basis for achieving and sustaining new levels of patient safety and satisfaction. Using a unique and innovative approach, the firm's PHLo™ (Proactive Healthcare Logistics system) delivers an enduring platform for higher performance. More than a one-time event, the methodology comports with the realities of health care challenges, today and tomorrow.

To read more about why hospitals struggle to achieve the superior quality and the operational effectiveness demanded today and how they can overcome such difficulties, visit USCCG's blog at http://phlo.typepad.com.

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