Reflection on recent tragic aviation events offers us an important insight;
though immediate and practical gains in system performance and capabilities can often be achieved through incremental improvements (the crudest iteration of which is the “bolt on” solution) – this is not always so.
There are conditions under which complete redesign is required. Failure to heed indications of that being the case, can lead to tragic outcomes … far worse than forgoing an incremental improvement incompatible with the system within which it operates.
We are most certainly surrounded by equivalent situations in health care delivery every day. Do we see them? Do we know when not to force incremental improvements, but rather to champion fundamental redesign? Do we even know when the equivalent of the plane crashing occurs on a community population health basis?
The investigation into the root cause of these aviation disasters is still unfolding and more facts and insights will likely enter the public domain in the weeks and months ahead. But the story garnered so far … has a profound ring of truth to it. Let’s use it as an insight to inform our design thinking and energize us to take the appropriate actions required to improve our health care system.