Forum Agenda

Thursday, February 11, 2021 7:30AM - 2:00PM PST / 10:30AM - 5:00PM EST

Times below are presented in Eastern Standard Time.

10:30AM – Welcome and Framing the Day
Welcome to the Health System Forum! Get to know some of your fellow participants as we introduce systems thinking concepts and frame the day ahead.
11:00AM – Opening Session
Dr. Victor Garcia will discuss his work, philosophies and application of systems thinking both in and beyond the walls of the renowned Cincinnati Children's Hospital.
Victor Garcia, MD
Pediatric Surgeon, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
Professor of Surgery and Pediatrics, University of Cincinnati School of Medicine
11:30AM – Keynote Presentation: Systems Thinking Habits and Tools Applied to Health Systems Science
In this keynote presentation led by Jed Gonzalo MD, MSc and Ami DeWaters MD, MSc of Penn State College of Medicine, hear an overview of the role of systems thinking in Health Systems Science and medical education and the importance of developing “systems citizens” in the healthcare field. Through interactive use of the Habits of a Systems Thinker and the Iceberg framework, we will examine cases such as the Opioid Epidemic and the COVID-19 pandemic to deepen understanding and to identify leverage areas and lessons learned. Be prepared for plenty of group discussion, sharing of knowledge and experience, and concrete ideas for applying systems thinking to your own area of interest.
Presented by:
Ami L. DeWaters, MD MSc
Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine
Assistant Director of Health Systems Sciences Education
Penn State College of Medicine
Jed Gonzalo, MD MSc
Professor of Medicine and Public Health Sciences
Associate Dean for Health Systems Education
Penn State College of Medicine
1:00PM – Break
1:15PM – MED Talks and a Whole System View
Hear from experts in the medical and public health fields on how they integrate systems thinking Habits and tools in their work. Then, work with other attendees in a breakout group to make connections to your own system(s) of interest.
Talks presented by:
Amy Edgar, APRN, CRNP, FNP-C
Founder, Nurse Practitioner
Children’s Integrated Center for Success
Amy Edgar, APRN, CRNP, FNP-C, founded and leads an integrated care children’s center in Allentown, PA. Hear how Amy took a systems approach in the design and running of this clinic and how the structures she put in place allowed them to pivot in three days to an all-virtual practice that provides increased accessibility and more services than before the COVID-19 pandemic.
Terri Lee, MPH
Director, Office of Women’s Health
Indiana State Department of Health
Systems have a significant impact on the implementation and dissemination of public health efforts and information. Hear how public health professional Terri Lee MPH, is using systems thinking even in the face of a pandemic.
Kathleen Swanson, DPN RN
Assistant Professor of Practice, School of Nursing
North Dakota State University
Kathleen Swanson, DPN, RN, will share how she uses systems thinking to foster civility, resilience, quality and safety as a part of nursing curriculum and in the nursing field. Through examples and real-life scenarios, she will describe how these important factors contribute to positive relationships in the healthcare system.
2:30PM – THINK! Break
3:00PM – Stories From the Field: Speaker Breakout Presentations
Practitioners representing different areas of the health system will share their systems thinking stories and connect with participants.
The Vicious Cycle – Systemic Health Inequality in an Inequitable Society
Facilitated by Michele Battle-Fisher, MPH, MA
Research Manager, Equitas Health Institute
The United States has gross disparities that affect marginalized populations that already suffer under immense social, financial, physical and emotional stressors. By definition, systems thinking accounts for the slipperiness and elusiveness of social reality while existing simultaneously as patterned and measurable. The acceptance of health inequity is immoral while the acceptance of its complexity makes our understanding of it messier but perhaps closer to possible resolution. Systems thinking moves public health beyond historically engrained approaches that often entrench the very disparities that reactionary approaches mean to reverse. In this session, led by Michele Battle-Fisher, participants will learn about and discuss the inequitable state of health disparities in the United States and the usefulness of systems thinking to untangle and resolve them.
Beyond COVID: Opening the Floodgates of Creativity in a Clinical Setting
Facilitated by Amy Edgar, APRN, CRNP, FNP-C
Founder, Nurse Practitioner
Children's Integrated Center for Success
COVID-19 has placed huge stress and strain on health systems, public health workers and clinicians. Even after the pandemic subsides, the demand for services will continue to grow. Will we have the capacity to meet this need? How can we be proactive rather than reactive for the next five years? While we barely have our heads above water, how can we start to take the lessons of this pandemic and create new ways to deliver care that will serve everyone more effectively? What mental models need to shift? What structures do we need to let go of and what new possibilities can we bring into being? Spending time in the world of “what’s possible” — designing new ways of delivering care — can also help us through these challenging times. Amy will share what she is doing at her clinic in Allentown, PA to address these challenges and host a conversation about how systems thinking can help us rethink healthcare delivery to the benefit of all.
Engaging Systems in Co-creating Neighborhood Health and Wellness
Facilitated by:
Timothy Ehlinger, PhD
Wm. Collins Kohler Chair
Director, Institute for Systems Change & Peacebuilding
University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
Laura Hermanns, MSP
Assistant Director for the Center for Global Health Equity
Partnerships Coordinator, Institute for Systems Change & Peacebuilding
University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
The City of Milwaukee’s Choice Neighborhoods Initiative is in the process of implementing a locally-driven, comprehensive strategy to transform Wisconsin’s oldest and largest public housing project and surrounding neighborhood into an inclusive community of opportunity and wellbeing. The City’s Housing Authority is partnering with UW-Milwaukee’s Institute for Systems Change and Peacebuilding to work together with neighborhood residents and stakeholders to co-create and implement a shared vision of holistic community health and wellness using participatory systems thinking, including a community-led process for program selection, design, aligned action, evaluation and adaptive learning. This session will highlight examples from each stage of the Adaptive Learning Cycle for Systems Change.
A Systems Thinking Journey: From Middle School to the ER
Facilitated by Nathaniel Johnson, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor
EM & Peds Faculty, College of Medicine, University of Arizona
How many of us can say that something we learned in middle school has gone on to influence us in our professional career? The day-to-day value of being a systems thinker began early for Dr. Nathaniel “Nat” Johnson. As a 1996 graduate of Catalina Foothills School District in Tucson, Arizona, Nat had the advantage of experiencing systems thinking learning as a part of his early education. Today, as a Clinical Assistant Professor in emergency medicine and pediatrics, Nat will describe the long-term impact systems thinking has had on his medical education learning, clinical decision-making, problem-solving and his ability to see and manage the big picture of patient-centered health care. In this session, view long-term video research of 13 year-olds, including Nat, describing the value of systems thinking during their middle school years. Then, fast forward to the same young people two decades later in their careers discussing the long-term value and application of systems thinking.
System Simulation to ReThink Population Health
Facilitated by:
Rebecca Niles, MBA
Executive Director, System Dynamics Society
Bobby Milstein, PhD, MPH
Director of System Strategy, ReThink Health
The ReThink Health Dynamics Model is a free simulation model that can be used to explore more than 20 options for improving regional health. This model has been customized and used throughout the United States to engage communities in strategic conversations and to shift investment into the upstream social determinants of health. In this session, you will get to see the model in action and hear stories of the model in use. Best of all, attendees can have free access to the simulation and other tools after the session for deeper exploration of how to spread the systems perspective in the health domain.
Experiences in Teaching and Learning Systems Thinking in Health Care
Facilitated by Stephanie Starr, MD
Associate Professor of Pediatrics
Director for Science of Health Care Delivery Education
Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine
With panelists Katherine Bartoletta, MD, MSc and Sean Clark, MA
Stephanie Starr, MD will facilitate a panel presentation with Katherine Bartoletta, MD, MSc and Sean Clark, MA sharing selected experiences and opportunities for teaching systems thinking to medical students, residents, and health professionals across healthcare organizations. Participants will work in small groups to identify target learners for their organization and identify and commit to possible next steps for systems thinking education at their home institution.
4:15PM – Bringing It All Together
As systems thinkers, participants will determine their own next steps for enhancing the systems they are a part of, with the goal of positively impacting the health system and the people it serves and employs.
5:00PM – End of Forum