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AHA Strategic Plan is about the transformation of health care

January 24, 2014

The following is AHA President and CEO Rich Umbdenstock’s introductory message from the new 2014-2016 AHA Strategic Plan.

Setting a course toward a moving target is challenging – but for hospitals and their trustees, it’s imperative. While the details of how we will be compensated for the work we do remain uncertain, signs of health care’s transformation from volume to value are surfacing. Hospitals are rethinking their business models and engaging with patients and communities to achieve better population health. They are making an impact by embracing e-health: from diving deep into patient data to address health care disparities, to the use of new consumer-friendly electronic devices, to public reporting and scrutiny of quality and safety measures. And they are finding ways to integrate care delivery and follow evidencebased best practices.

The transformation of health care is
under way, and that’s what the AHA’s 2014-2016 Strategic Plan is all about. Each year, AHA’s management, governance committees and Board of Trustees look down the road at evolving challenges in health care. We then develop strategies to address those challenges for both the field and the association.

Within the context of this plan, we will spend the next year discussing a new understanding of the term “hospital” in the communities we serve. That big white H on the blue background will continue to evolve from a
largely acute care building and to more of a coordinated system of care. Our field and association must work together to establish a common vision of all that this will encompass so we can lay the groundwork for a successful future.

As hospitals contend with a
dynamic environment, we at the AHA will continue to reevaluate and refine how we can be of the greatest value to you. You will play an integral part of transforming U.S. health care, and we will be right there beside you, advocating for you and providing you with the tools and resources you need to achieve your mission.

Our commitment to building healthier communities will never change. That means we in the business of health care must constantly change to better prepare and position ourselves to meet that commitment.

Thank you for working with us as together we improve health care
delivery. The 2014-2016 AHA Strategic Plan and the accompanying Strategy Map are available online by going to the “About Section” of www.aha.org and clicking on “Strategic Plan” under “Organization.” For more information or to comment on the plan, contact Gene O’Dell, the AHA’s vice president of strategic and business planning, at godell@aha.org.

By Rich Umbdenstock