The Quadruple Aim: Focusing On Care Provider And Staff Wellbeing

A 2014 article in the Annals of Family Medicine, titled “From Triple to Quadruple Aim: Care of the Patient Requires Care of the Provider” by Dr. Thomas Bodenheimer and Dr. Christine Sinsky, has become a clarion call to address the well-being needs of healthcare providers and staff.

The authors contend that the Triple Aim—to enhance the patient experience, improve population health, and reduce costs—will be attainable only when high rates of job burnout and dissatisfaction among care providers and staff are mitigated.

In the course of gathering data from focus groups, journey mapping, and walking interviews with more than 100 healthcare staff and clinicians, we have identified a number of guiding principles focused on improving the well-being and work life of care providers in a holistic way.

Here is some of what we have learned about the wellbeing needs of healthcare providers and staff, and how these principles can be supported through design solutions.

  • Encourage and enable respite to restore energy, productivity, and sense of self.
  • Facilitate eating breaks for physical and social nourishment.
  • Provide dedicated work zones for collaboration and concentration.
  • Offer access to health-promoting amenities.
  • Connect the indoors and outdoors.

Planning healthcare environments with these guiding principles in mind will do much to improve the wellbeing and work life of providers, bringing us closer to realizing the Quadruple Aim. After all, as Bodenheimer and Sinsky remind us, care of the patient requires care of the provider.

For more information about these guiding principles, read the full blog in Healthcare Design.