Business Today 14th January 2018 - Page 68

The Best Management Lesson I Learnt
Once our hospital was operational , I had only one driving intention : To live up to the wishes of my patients . My approach to management has always been intuitive . I preface every decision with the question “ What does my patient deserve ?” And the answer directs my decision-making .
To begin with , the Indian patient deserved the very best of clinical outcomes . For this , I needed to ensure that our hospitals were well-equipped with the best of equipment and state-of-the-art technology . I had to attract the best of clinical talent ; convince talented doctors to serve in India . And I needed to train our support staff - nurses and paramedics – to ably support our doctors on every case .
All this I accomplished , not without struggle , but with relative speed and ease . Apollo Hospitals gained the trust of patients , and we brought the best of treatment to India . Thenceforth , no one needed to go abroad to receive cutting-edge care . Our clinical outcomes improved by leaps and bounds .

I wished to replicate and scale this success , but this brought its own set of challenges . Indeed , I had written a letter to our dynamic late Prime Minister , Rajiv Gandhi , saying “ I wish I had set up a beedi factory or a beer factory instead of a healthcare facility .” His understanding of the issues , and subsequent approval of our outreach , transformed the healthcare system in the country . Today , we have over 5,000 hospitals in India doing excellent tertiary care work . Apollo Hospitals has grown , expanding the network and reaching more patients and providing real health and happiness . But for me , that was not enough . Our experience with patients had proven that beyond Clinical outcomes , they were looking for two other Cs as well – Care and Compassion . These quintessentially Indian attributes would make the difference between the cold walls of a hospital and the warm fuzziness of a place of healing and recovery .

And so , we began the next phase in Apollo ’ s journey – the institutionalisation of tender loving care . This was a challenge too , not because of lack of intent , but because of the complexity of the task . For a truly great patient experience , several departments needed to work seamlessly in an unbroken flow – from something as simple as administering medication , to ensuring the appropriate diet , to serving the meals warm , to keeping the room clean , to attending to the patient ’ s family and joining in their prayers - several processes needed to function like clockwork . We had to be present in the patients ’ vicinity , but never intrude on their privacy . We had to check on them regularly , but never too much .
My approach to management has always been intuitive . I preface every decision with the question “ What does my patient deserve ?” And the answer directs my decision-making

We have spent much of our energy for the

last several years trying to perfect this process . We have learned valuable lessons , rigorously trained and re-trained thousands of our staff , and developed several processes which converge to deliver on patient experience . Our service protocols are next to none , and put us at the top of the world . We can say with satisfaction that Apollo Hospitals has been successful in delivering the three Cs of patient expectation – Clinical Outcomes , Care and Compassion . Needless to say , we are not perfect - we are still learning , and striving to continuously improve .
And that has been my most valuable management lesson – always strive to live up to the wishes of your consumer . In today ’ s management parlance : be customer-centric . Every decision and investment must be dictated by the wishes of the consumer , and how our actions will deliver on his / her expectations .
With this credo , the impossible has been achieved . The critics have been silenced , the sceptics convinced . Apollo Hospitals has accomplished formidable things – we run the largest solid organ transplant programme in the world ; we have performed over 1,70,000 coronary bypass surgeries , at a success rate comparable to the very best in the world . And in emulating our model , the Indian private healthcare sector has been born . The healthcare sector has emerged as one of the
68 I BUSINESS TODAY I January 14 I 2018
The Best Management Lesson I Learnt Once our hospital was operational, I had only one driving intention: To live up to the wishes of my patients. My approach to management has al- ways been intuitive. I preface every decision with the question “What does my patient deserve?” And the answer directs my decision-making. To begin with, the Indian patient deserved the very best of clinical outcomes. For this, I needed to ensure that our hospitals were well-equipped with the best of equipment and state-of-the-art technolo- gy. I had to attract the best of clinical talent; convince talented doctors to serve in India. And I needed to train our support staff - nurses and paramedics – to ably support our doctors on every case. All this I accomplished, not without struggle, but with relative speed and ease. Apollo Hospitals gained the trust of patients, and we brought the best of treatment to India. Thenceforth, no one needed to go abroad to receive cutting-edge care. Our clinical outcomes improved by leaps and bounds. I wished to replicate and scale this success, but this brought its own set of challenges. Indeed, I had written a letter to our dynamic late Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi, saying “I wish I had set up a beedi factory or a beer factory instead of a health- care facility.” His understanding of the issues, and subsequent approval of our outreach, transformed the healthcare system in the country. Today, we have over 5,000 hospitals in India doing excellent tertiary care work. Apollo Hospitals has grown, ex- panding the network and reaching more patients and providing real health and happiness. But for me, that was not enough. Our experience with pa- tients had proven that beyond Clinical outcomes, they were looking for two other Cs as well – Care and Compassion. These quintessentially Indian attributes would make the difference between the cold walls of a hospital and the warm fuzziness of a place of healing and recovery. And so vR&VvFRWB6R( 0W&W( 2FR7FGWFƗ6FbFVFW"bЦr6&RF2v26VvRFB&V6W6R`6bFVB'WB&V6W6RbFR6WGbFPF6f"G'Vǒw&VBFVBWW&V6R6WfW&FW'FVG2VVFVBFv&6VW76ǒVЦ'&Vfr( 2g&6WFr26R2F֖Ц7FW&rVF6FFV7W&rFR&&FPFWBF6W'frFRV2v&FVWrFP&6VFGFVFrFFRFVN( 2f֖ǒ@rFV"&W'26WfW&&6W76W2VVFV@FgV7FƖR66v&vRBF&R&W6V@FRFVG>( f6G'WBWfW"G'VFRFV &f7vRBF6V6FV&VwV&ǒ'W@WfW"FV6ג&6FvVV@2v2&VVGVFfR&Vf6RWfW'FV66vFFPVW7F( vBFW2גFV@FW6W'fS( BFR7vW F&V7G2גFV66ppRfR7VBV6bW"VW&wf"FP7B6WfW&V'2G'rFW&fV7BF0&6W72vRfRV&VBfV&RW2Ч62&v&W6ǒG&VBB&RG&VBFW6G0bW"7FfbBFWfVVB6WfW&&6W76W2v66fW&vRFFVƗfW"FVBWW&V6RW"6W"Чf6R&F62&RWBFRBWBW2BFPFbFRv&BvR66vF6F6f7FF@7F22&VV7V66W76gVFVƗfW&pFRF&VR72bFVBWV7FF( 26Ɩ6WBЦ6W26&RB676VVFW72F6vP&RBW&fV7BvR&R7FV&rB7G&frF6FVW6ǒ&fRBFB2&VVג7BfV&RvRЦVBW76( 2v27G&fRFƗfRWFFRv6W0bW"67VW"FF( 2vVVB&6S&R7W7FW"6VG&2WfW'FV66BfW7FV@W7B&RF7FFVB'FRv6W2bFR67VW"@rW"7F2vFVƗfW"2W"WV7FF2vFF27&VFFR76&R2&VV6WfVBFR7&F72fR&VV6V6VBFR66WF726f6VB7F2266Ɨ6VBf&֖F&RFw0( 2vR'VFR&vW7B6ƖB&vG&7B&w&PFRv&CvRfRW&f&VBfW"s6&Ц''727W&vW&W2B7V66W72&FR6&&PFFRfW'&W7BFRv&BBVVFrW FVFRF&fFRVF6&R6V7F"2&VV&&FRVF6&R6V7F"2VW&vVB2RbFPc%U4U52DDV'B#