2023 Innovation Resolutions: Leveraging Existing Strengths to Innovate 

This post is part of NACHC’s monthly Innovation Blog Series hosted by NACHC’s Center for Community Health Innovation (CCHI). 

As the new year starts, we are pushed to create resolutions that will make our lives different, better. But sometimes we forget that who we are is enough. That same mentality can be translated into our organizations, especially as it relates to innovation. When it comes to innovation, I often hear “we are too busy,” “we are too small,” “we are too much of something to innovate.” But what you are too much of may be exactly the secret ingredient to change hundreds or even thousands of lives.

I am a firm believer that your health center, PCA, HCCN already has all the ingredients needed to be innovative. Why? Because the secret ingredient of the Community Health Center Movement are the people behind it! In the book, “The Innovator’s DNA,” by Jeff Dyer, he identifies five skills of disruptive innovators:  

  1. Questioning. Asking questions to understand how things work, why they work, how they can be changed or improved.  
  1. Observing. It goes beyond simply looking, but really seeing the world around them.  
  1. Networking. This goes beyond talking to people, but it really refers to looking for others to actively search for new ideas and insights.  
  1. Experimenting. Trying new things, these can be big or small. It can be part of a PDSA cycle or taking a different approach or new mindset to a task.  
  1. Associating. This refers to associating thinking, it simply means taking everything, synthesizing it to make new ideas. 

So, knowing that the Innovator’s DNA is already part of your staff, which innovation resolutions will your organization have to take advantage of the things you might be “too much of?” 

Need some inspiration? Below are some resolutions from NACHC’S CCHI staff and some of our Innovation Advisory Council members.  

Informed by a 2022 Storytelling workshop NACHC hosted, in 2023 I am experimenting with building the storytelling component from the beginning of every project.”

– Jed Barton, Partnership Development and Management Specialist, NACHC (WDC) 

Leverage the connection between technology and outreach.  As an example, we started using our Community Health Workers to help us address chronic illnesses and SDOH with new Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) systems.  They perform home visits or meet patients at appointments.  They also get them connected to RPM so we have better data outside of the office to better care for the patient.”

– Dr. Faith Polkey, CEO, Beaufort-Jasper-Hampton Comprehensive Health Services (SC) 

[Our resolution is] to help others seeking to adopt new innovations we have experienced and be open to receive help by others willing to share with us.  Adoption of sustainable innovation often requires multiple organizations working openly and with trust in each other.”

– Rich Bettini, President & CEO, Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center (HI) 

On a personal level, I would like our innovation at CHC, Inc. to be around the use of predictive analytics and/or further developing/disseminating best practices for school-based health care (which I believe will be an area of significant opportunity for FQHC growth and impact in the years ahead).”

– Jason Shaplen, Chief Strategy and New Ventures Officer, Community Health Center, Inc. (CT) 

My innovation resolution is to heed Dr. Dyer’s “Experimenting” lesson. Sometimes we (especially me) think and talk and study too much, and “try” or “do” too little.”

– Merrill Warschoff Press, Senior Vice President, Development and Innovation, NACHC

Now it is your turn! Use the comments field below to share your innovation resolution for 2023 with us.