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A new control model for Dijklander hospital

Organising hospital care more efficiently, with an eye for patients and medical staff, is one of the major topical issues in healthcare. Making this a success requires a thorough knowledge of the ins and outs of a hospital and a hefty dose of realisation power. These qualities come together in the person of Jérôme Teerlink, associate partner of Boer & Croon. He is a (non-practising) primary physician and business expert, and we spoke to him about this assignment.

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Making hospital care more efficient, with an eye for both the patient and the medical staff, is one of the significant trends in healthcare. Making this a success requires a thorough knowledge of the ins and outs of a hospital and a hefty dose of realization power. These qualities come together in the person of Jérôme Teerlink, associate partner of Boer & Croon. He is a (non-practising) primary care physician and business expert, and we spoke to him about this assignment.

Can you tell me a bit more about the new control model?
'The control model aims to place responsibilities as low as possible on the shop floor to respond more quickly to new developments. Suppose you look at the development in patient flow at the moment. In that case, the monodisciplinary patient, who only goes to one specialist, no longer comes to the hospital. Patients often have multiple conditions and come into the hospital in the acute phase of an illness. With that, care has become much more complex. From a unit structure, you cannot serve these patients optimally in terms of quality and costs. Various topics were worked out in various working groups, including the arrangement of five centres instead of specialized units. A special feature of the structure was the dual management by a business centre manager and a medical centre manager.'


How did you proceed to implement the new control model?
'When the final decision on the operating model was made in early 2023, an internal steering committee was set up to handle the preparation and implementation. With the direction group led by the HR manager, we started looking at what was still needed to start with the new control model by June 2023. After internal application rounds, the positions of three of the five centre heads were filled. No suitable candidate had been found for the acute care and support services centres at that time. I, therefore, temporarily filled both positions. This was possible because I was already well-versed in the components of both centres. At the same time, we launched an external search through Boer & Croon to find a permanent position for these functions. With success, as the positions have since been filled."

What was unique in this process was that the business and medical centre managers were selected more or less simultaneously. Leadership skills were especially considered when selecting the medical centre manager. So I started the medical support centre with a cardiologist as medical centre manager.'


Looking back on your time at Dijklander Hospital, what are you most proud of?
'That I was able to participate in the implementation of the new management model. I also motivated several colleagues at the Dijklander Hospital to apply for a new position in one of the centres. This is what I like doing best: making people trust their abilities and encouraging them to actually take that leap.'


The Dijklander hospital

The Dijklander Hospital was formed in 2017 by merging the Waterland Hospital in Purmerend and the Westfriesgasthuis in Hoorn. Since the merger, the regional hospital has operated in the rural region of Noord-Holland Noord and the urban area of Zaanstreek Waterland. The Dijklander Hospital employs more than 3,000 staff spread across four locations. In early 2022, an advisory group began working on the existing operating model's bottlenecks and a possible direction for a solution. Based on careful analysis, this advisory group proposed a control model for more managerial power to shape the strategic tasks more effectively and decisively. In early 2023, it was decided to introduce this new operating model, allowing the hospital to provide care more efficiently across five different centres.