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RAPID ASSESSMENT

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Amy Umble is health reporter for The Free Lance-Star

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What is it about MWH? Why the distrust?

What is it about Mary Washington Healthcare? Why do people hate it so?

Obviously I exaggerate for effect, but I think it’s fair to ask about Mary Washington’s reputation in this community. I sense a deep vein of dislike toward Mary Washington. I’ve seen it ever since I started covering the health care beat, and I continue to see it in the e-mails that I get and in the online comments posted after many of my stories. I believe it is a minority opinion, but it exists.

The latest example arrived after I did a story about Stafford Hospital and its success at keeping the MRSA bug away from its patients. When the story appeared last week, Stafford had logged 600 consecutive MRSA-free days. Since then the total has grown to 607. An e-mail arrived soon after publication from a reader who said:

“Did Stafford Hospital tell you about ill patients transported from Stafford Hospital to MWH who may have had MRSA or were suspected of having MRSA?  Did you inquire of MWH about patient transfers from Stafford Hospital to MWH who may have had MRSA or were suspected of having MRSA?  The Stafford Hospital 19 month record is too remarkable to be credible, absent some very tough and unyielding questioning.”    

To be honest, it never dawned on me that Stafford might be cooking the numbers. So I asked Dr. Amy Adome about it. She is one of the people I interviewed for the original story. She replied in an e-mail:

“We absolutely do not and have never transferred patients to MWH from SH to keep SH’s record intact. The numbers are real and we take great pride in them. One of our health system’s values is integrity and we would never play that type of game to mislead our community.”

I’m satisfied with Adome’s answer; I’ve seen no evidence that contradicts her. But the other question remains: Why would someone immediately suspect that Stafford’s record is “too remarkable to be credible.” Why the distrust?

Is it because Mary Washington until this year has been the monopoly provider in the region? Like the electric company, the phone company, or the Free Lance-Star, people may resent its position. As the saying goes, nobody loves a monopolist.

Is it because they provide substandard care? Nearly 30,000 people were admitted there last year, so I’m sure there are patients who were unhappy with their care. But I’ve talked with many others who were pleased, and I’ve seen no pattern of incompetence or neglect.

I recall what one of my colleagues said about the people in Warrenton, where he lives. He said his neighbors are always complaining about Fauquier Hospital, even though Fauquier is unmatched among area hospitals in its federal patient-satisfaction scores.

Maybe what we have is never as good as what the other person has. Do the residents of Rochester, Minn., complain about the Mayo Clinic? I’m puzzled and welcome your thoughts.

Permalink: http://news.fredericksburg.com/rapidassessment/2010/11/17/what-is-it-about-mwh-why-the-distrust/

  • LarryG

    short but simple – and maybe not fair – but you did an article on Facquier (I think) and how they had such high ratings and how they worked on all the things that concerned their “customers”.

    I’ve been a patient at MWC and I was actually accused of lying by the Anesthesiologist who was rude not to mention inconsiderate.

    The people who work there – do not care how long you sit waiting nor will they offer you any info on when to come so waiting is less ….

    the attitude is that they have a job to do – and you are a name on the sign-in that they must “process”.

    The new ER at Lee’s Hill now uses those little buzzers that restaurants use but after that it’s the same old, same old… go sit in a cubical and get into the hospital gown – and wait… and no the lockers that no longer work – are YOUR problem.. carry your valuables with you…

    the whole affair is heavily institutionalized AND the workers do not consider you a customer nor do they really care how you feel about the “experience”.

    If MWC was REALLY CONCERNED about this – and their Medicare Survey scores – they would institute their own customer survey for EVERY customer and they would have people who had already experienced MWC to help devise the questions AND those same citizens that helped with the questions would have access to the raw data and would be allowed to generate their own report.

    Every single person who walks into those doors – is a “customer” and needs to be treated like one – and it sounds like to be they are at some hospitals like Facquier but …despite some improvements.. the institutional culture at MWC has not moved to a customer-centric approach.

    This did not seem to be that important to MWC when they were the only dog in the hospital hunt.

    That’s not to be that surprising but every customer who has a less than wonderful experience at MWC has family and friends… and word of mouth – can make a business a real winner and word-of-mouth can do the opposite.

    I don’t condemn MWC. For myself I do not care as much about “bedside-manner” as I do the reputation and quality indicators but when much is mediocre … mixed in with some bad “reviews” .. that’s how you get a less than stellar reputation…

    those things are hard to earn and easy to lose.

  • John

    I’ve had many encounters at MWH and only one time was I not happy. It was in the ER and there was the most pompous-assed doctor I have ever had the displeasure of asking help from. I won’t name him but I want to follow up this comments to name a few names of the most fantastic doctors any person or family in medical durress could ever hope to be seen by- Dr. Walsh and Dr. Pennington. Dr. On the several occasions one of us were admitted, the entire staff of nurses, NA’a, lab techs, support staff, everyone was professional and offered us hope through their care.

  • PatientandFormerEmployee

    I have been a patient at MWH multiple times over the years and I have also worked for MWH. I actually prefer to conduct my medical business elsewhere because I believe I am in better hands. If you had asked me several years ago my opinion of MWH I would have said it was a horrible hospital with uncompassionate employees and uncaring money hungry physicians. The executives of MWH realized that with competition moving in they had to change things. They set up customer service training and actually enforced compliance. They utilized surveying to keep track of what needed improvements. Overall, the customer service at MWH has improved considerably. Of course, there is always going to be that employee that is going to make a patient’s experience miserable. With that said, I still prefer to go elsewhere for my medical care. I say this because I have experienced the ER at MWH and I have experienced botched surgery at MWH and I have experienced improper diagnosis at MWH. I will say that the medical care has improved over the years. They have made many changes and I think they will continue to improve. I think sometimes the first impression is the lasting impression so people just have a bad taste in their mouth. It’s what they know and it’s hard to convince someone otherwise, especially when it comes to their healthcare. All in all, there is no such thing as a perfect health care system.

  • John

    Whether you agree or disagree with healthcare reform, the biggest reason that so many people have become fervently for or against the matter is that at its core, it affects one of the most personal things that we entrust to other people. When we find ourselves or a loved one ill or injured, there is a physiological response that makes us on our guard and in some ways, we are at our most vulnerable. As patients, we seek help when we are afraid and are uncertain about the potential repercussions of our present afflictions. It may not always be life or death but it is always a fear of losing the ability to live life the way that we have become accustomed to.

    In an ideal world there would be a one-to-one ratio between healthcare providers and patients but with over 120,000 people in Spotsylvania County alone, even with countless options for medical services available, this simply isn’t the case. So, whether it is at our primary care doctor’s or the emergency room, we often find ourselves waiting to be seen. We all know what it feels like to be afraid and forced to wait to receive answers. The minutes can be agonizing and in an emergency department, that feeling is amplified.

    Healthcare professionals are placed in the unenviable position of having to categorize and subjectively decide who to see first. Regional providers have tried to make this easier by offering posted wait times or giving pagers out but at the end of the day that waiting often makes people feel like just a “customer”. Having spent a fair amount of time in EMS and working with providers in several facilities and states, I must say that regardless of what group they work for, treating patient’s like a number is never their intent.

    Emergency providers are faced with dealing with people on the worst day of their lives every single day and often times, completely uncompensated but yet they show up to work each and every day because they are members of the community, your neighbors, little league coaches and maybe even your friends with a vested interest in your well being. And it is genuinely insulting that articles and comments like these would insinuate anything to the contrary.

    It is never newsworthy when someone feels like a “customer” at the DMV or the grocery store but unfortunately, no matter where you are, waiting comes from volume not from apathy. Providers at every local hospital give up Christmas with their children, and Thanksgiving with their families in order to support their community. They are too busy treating any number of the 120,000 people to be intentionally and spitefully making patients wait and skewing sepsis data. Treating those in need is a full time job.

  • Mike

    The problem is, as with any other business or industry, that we are far more likely to hear from the few customers that were not satisfied with their experience. People who have a bad experience feel the need to tell others and do things such as post comments and stories to spread the word on how bad the business is. Many times their experince is exaggerated and we are only hearing one side of the story.

    Customers that have a good or satisfactory experience just go on about their day because that is what they expected in the first place and it is nothing to brag about.

    As stated in the article, over 30,000 people were admitted to MWH. We will most likely hear from the hundred or so people that have had bad experiences, but will likely not hear about the 29,000+ people that were happy or satisfied with their experience.

  • me

    I would like to know just this year how many less or more employs work at each hospital?And also there counting the
    MRSA bug They must not be counting. The people that come in with the MRSA bug an still leave with it right?

  • kfredburg

    I few years back before we lived in Fredericksburg we were visiting family members here on Thanksgiving and I began to have a miscarriage. The care I received was the worst I have ever seen. While I was hemorraging they would not take me back right away because my pregnancy was not far enough along. Once I was in a room the doctor failed to tell us exactly what was happening (our first pregnancy) and was very rude. While crying she looks up and says rudely “are you actually in pain or just crying because of whats going on?” She then walked out and we could hear her complaining to a nurse about missing her turkey dinner because she had to be at the hospital. About a half hour later they sent in a grief counselor to talk to us. The only thing she said the minute she walked in the door was she was sorry and hopes I know it wasnt my fault and walked right out. The doctor did not do a thorough exam after my miscarriage and sent me home in excrutiating pain. Less than 24 hours later I was in a hospital in MD getting a D&C because the doctors @ MWH screwed up. We now live in the area and am happy there are other alternatives near by.

  • adv1sor

    If you are admitted by a good and recognized doctor then you will get good care. If not, then you wont.

    I’ve twice been a patient at MWH. Once for a planned surgery. My doctor was very well known and my care was first class, all the way.

    The second time I came in through the ER. I was in so much pain I could barely speak. Once I could find my insurance card they helped me fill out the forms and put me in one of the ER rooms. I couldn’t help but cry out in pain. After about an hour, someone got tired of hearing me and shut the door. Finally a doctor came in and prescribed morphine. (The problem was a kidney stone stuck in the tube between the bladder and the kidney). He said that it would work itself out and that, in the meantime, I would have a morphine shot every hour. Every hour the nurses were late delivering the shot and I suffered in pain. Finally they decided to move me to a regular room and hook me up to a morphine pump so that I could control the medicine myself. I waited three hours in pain after being moved to the room because the nurse there didn’t have the orders and then because she was on break. I considered calling 911 to get myself moved back to the ER.

    The bottom line is that most of the workers, nurses, doctors, etc., just don’t care. Why should they? They get paid the same.

    Of course, if they think that their jobs are on the line because your were admitted by a well known doctor, then you get the better care.

    Health care in this country is a joke. Doctors get their advice from drug pushers. Patients get their advice from TV commercials.

    Doctors have become on par with crooked mechanics. The more they can convince you is wrong and the more tests they run, the more money they make.

  • Carol

    I too have been a patient at MWH several times, as have my family members. I’ve had good and not-so-good service, so I think it’s the luck of the draw. Surgical care was wonderful in the OR and surrounding areas, but on the floors, it was dismal. Once I was on morphine pump and kept buzzing for the nurse to help me to the bathroom. After 2 hours, I finally unplugged my pumps and took myself. Then got yelled at for doing so.

    Experience in the ER is terrible. Dr. Garvey is the largest a-hole physician I’ve ever had the misfortune to meet. He actually accused me of just coming in for morphine and drugs even though I hadn’t had an ER visit in over 7 years. No one every touched me to determine my issue–they pumped me full of drugs to control my pain and sent me home. My appendix burst the next day.

    I’m glad to have options in the ‘burg now, as my family will be taking my business to SRMC from now on!

  • stacey

    I have been a patient at MWH and can say sometimes I have gotten wonderful care and other times I feel like just a number. Currently, a family memeber of mine is a patient at the hosptial. She was there to have a baby. The hospital told her they were “out of pacifers” when she asked for one. And during her delivery she was denied pain medication! She has Medicare. I wonder if this is how they always treat medicare patients? Outrageous!! I agree with others…it is the luck of the draw, or your healthcare coverage!

  • Kelly

    I have had some great experiences at MWH and some truly horrifying ones. The absolute worst were the two times I had to go to the ER for miscarriages. The first time, I was left in a triage room between two women with newborns while I was miscarrying. The second time, the ER doc insisted that the bleeding was “normal” and kept trying to discharge me. It took my husband, four nurses, and a janitor ganging up on him as I was leaving a trail of clots walking down the hall to the bathroom to get him to actually call someone with obstetrical training. The OB said that there was a decent chance I would have died from blood loss if I had gone home. In neither case was I offered any sort of followup service or a meeting with a grief counselor. I was simply told, “Well, if you wanted this baby, we’re really sorry.”

    On the flip side, I have had two great experiences with my middle daughter, who had two life-threatening respiratory infections as a very young infant. The attentiveness and kindness of the ER and floor staff were absolutely exemplary — beyond question, the kindest, most caring people I have ever met in a health care setting.

    I’ve also had 3 babies at MWH. The L&D people are very hit-or-miss. I’ve found the CNAs are some of the most delightful people on earth, but some of the nurses seem to need a break from what has to be a very stressful job. I’ve also seen some truly unprofessional behavior involving personal smartphones while a laboring woman is standing at the desk — that’s really a bad moment to tell someone to wait while you check your Facebook account.

  • LarryG

    Excellent …astute comments that I benefited personally from reading. thank you.

    After reading the comments and thinking about my own experience – i don’t think it’s a “training” issue for employees as much as it is an institutional culture problem – as evidenced by less than wonderful treatment by the medical people at times and what comes across as an attitude that the jobs is hard and that the patients make it harder or some such.

    I don’t mean to sound that harsh but it would take me some time to properly calibrate so I just spit out my gut feeling.

    You can’t run a hospital where the same person experiences wonderful treatment one time and not so good at other times … without suffering a credibility problem and a reputation problem..

    I can imagine the management lecturing their employees to “do better” with patients but the change has to come from the top and it has to be embraced also by the health care providers themselves including the doctors and nurses.

    Yes.. we are “patients” but we are also “customers”.

    just one more pet peeve – I do NOT like being talked to like I am an idiot when it comes to health care. We’re told over and over to be proactive in our own care – to be our own advocate – and I seem to always run into health care providers these days who basically think I’m a widget that does not think.

    I’ve run into some good folks at MWC and I suppose it’s unfair to let one or two bad experience outweigh the good but dog gone it… it just leaves a bad taste that doesn’t go away and the next time you show up – you (at least I do) DREAD the possibility of a repeat experience.

    I think MWC would benefit tremendously if they made arrangements to have their folks trained at that Warrenton Hospital that got such high marks.

  • Mary

    I have given MWH many chances, but I am not sure I have ever had an excellent experience there and I have had many very bad ones. My entire family drives to Richmond to go to the ER and we will continue to do so, even after the opening of MWH’s ER at Southpoint and the new hospital. You can drive to Richmond, and be checked in to the ER and receiving care in less time that you can spend just waiting in the ER at MWH. Typical wait times in Richmond are 30 minutes or less.

    I was once told I was dying of cancer at MWH and they refused to transport me to Richmond, where my surgeon was. The doctor actually told me I would not make it to Richmond in time! So he left the room and did not come back for over an hour. When medical staff eventually did come back, it was to put me on an ambulance to Richmond. No explanation. When I got to the hospital in Richmond I was told I was not actually dying, did not even have cancer, and had been on about double the appropriate of pain medication for my size and weight.

    My distrust comes from my own experiences (there are more) and those of my friends and family. I am very glad there is now competition in the area so people have a choice. I hope the new hospital also brings in more new doctors as well.

  • JB

    My wife and I have had nothing but bad expieriences at mwh with the exception of our childrens birth. Everyone that goes in with an unknown illness comes out with a UTI. Last year she was having irregular bleeding and severe abdominal pain so she went in to the er. Good news we were pregnant but the bleeding was profuse and the er doctor, after doing many tests, said your not far enough to see anything on an ultrasound and sent her home. When we got home she slept for a couple hours and woke up with even worse pain and more bleeding. We immidiatlly went back and once again had to wait. This time we got a diffrent doctor who decided maybe we should do an ultrasound. Turns out she had miscarried, torn a tube, and was bleeding both internally and externally. The docter then said it was a good thing we came back in. Had we not come back my wife would have died at home from bleeding internally and losing so much blood, and to make it better my wife’s tube was taken out along with our unborn child. Thanx MWH for taking our child and almost killing my wife. From now on we’re going to SRMC

  • El

    I would just like to point out some things! If you read the comments posted all are negative feedback. Do you see anyone writing positives? No! Thats because if your happy with your care you are less likely to talk about it! If there are positives you can note that the “Horrible experience” is the first thing out of their mouth! No hospital is perfect for those of you that say “Im going to SRMC.” Just wait til they have been around and treated you bad! I know that every hospital has those employees that work for the paycheck…but this is not true for all! I do work at MWH and I treat everyone as if they were my family or how I would want my family to be treated! It irritates the crap out of me to hear people say employees don’t care. The lay person does not always know what is going on around them. They think nurses are being to loud and partying outside their room but did they ever think hey they are coding someone down the hall or just got a sick patient and are yelling for equipment that might keep the other patient alive? We have to prioritize our patients. Sicker patients get attention first. If you are ok enough to complain about the noise then a patient that is dying is more of a priority! This is common sense!

  • John

    MWH ER has saved my life two times…so nothing but good things to say here.

  • LarryG

    Constructive Criticism – institutionalize equitable treatment of customers with respect to their time – appointments – and procedures.

    Promise timely operations appointments, procedures, etc – do it – and apologize when it fails and fix the problem. Multiple apologies mean nothing

    publish a survey that shows how the depts do on standard measure including timeliness.

    finally – MOST of the time – ONE part of ONE experience at MWH does not lead to complaint and criticism.

    Most folks are willing to give the benefit of the doubt on one aspect of an experience or even whole experience.

    they understand that not every day works as planned.

    It’s when a series of things rub them wrong – and they see it happen more than once that gets people hot.

    Survey’s are ALWAYS going to show a certain percent of basic complainers – a given..

    when you as an organization start to see higher than normal in some departments or compared to other hospitals.. blaming it on the customers is a failed strategy.

    How do we explain the Medicare survey results especially compared to Facquier?

    Are those results easily available on the MWH website?

    Does MWC provide commentary and a work plan to address the issues identified in the survey’s?

  • Kelly

    EI’s attitude is part of what’s wrong with MWH. I could have gone on to cite at least 3 more terrible experiences, but didn’t, and cited everything good I’ve experienced. I come from a health care family (no doctors, but LOTS of x-ray techs, nurses, and phlebotomists) and spent 5 years working in a hospital myself.

    I think the average person does know the difference between the noise caused by a medical emergency and the noise caused by uproarious laughter and loud music. I’m glad EI treats each patient as a family member. It is an unfortunate reality that many, many staff with whom I have interacted at MWH do not share EI’s philosophy.

  • Blobert

    This is a typical Jim Hall story – make a provocative statement and wait for an accumulation of unverified anecdotes from disgruntled people to write the story for you. A real journalist would do some actual research and try to verify these stories, interview actual people who work at the hospital, or conduct a telephone survey. What we have here is journalistic garbage of absolutely no value.

  • PatientandFormerEmployee

    I was a former employee of MWH for 8 years. I took pride in my professionalism and kindness towards people. Yes, there were absolutely days when I wanted to yell and scream and storm out of there because a patient or co-worker had me at my wits end but I found ways to deal with it and treated my patients the way I would want my family to be treated. So, first of all there is absolutely no excuse for rude behavior towards a patient. You are correct in saying that there are more good experiences that we will not hear about than bad but the bad is still there. Second, you should never assume that patients are so ignorant to not be able to seperate work related noise from the noise of employees goofing off. Most people know there are delays in healthcare, especially the ER but the if the employees would communicate more effectively with the patients it would probably cut down on some of the negative feedback. By the way, when employee’s posts sound so professional like above (sarcasm of course), it makes you wonder if that is part of the problem? Do employees think they are doing such a great job but are really just subpar? Then again, their supervisors should recognize this and make changes. At any rate, Im sure MWH will be proud of their employee ranting and raving about their ignorant patients.

  • LarryG

    One way to deal up front with the issue is to give every customer of MWH a survey postcard – than can be filled out online – and publish the results every month on their website – and invite questions and comments and respond to them.

    In other words, honestly engage your customers in a public way that demonstrates you want to know and you want the public to know.

    We will always have complainers and critics and my view is that when you don’t engage all of your customers and let them speak – that you really end up empowering those who have complaints.

    I don’t think MWH is terrible, in fact, in my experience, it has gotten better – at least at the things that I encounter – BUT there are still some issues that need attention.

    And as I said before – most of us don’t judge by a single experience unless some serious egregious things happen.

    Do the survey. Don’t play PR games. Perhaps replicate the Medicare survey with a couple of added questions specific to MWH.

    so my suggestion is in accordance with those who have posted here and say that MWH is being unfairly depicted by a few complainers.

    Don’t let them be the only conversation. Ask the rest of your customers.

  • The Inquisitor

    Although I tend to be a disbeliever of advertising and self-laudatory press releases unless the words of promise and praise are corroborated by examples of deeds independently by disinterested persons, I have some observations and probing questions in one dose for Mary Washington Hospital that could illuminate the way to recovery. MWH apologists will have to sit this one out.

    Among the principal reasons that MWH has an unpleasing reputation in our community is weak top to bottom management; poor public relations; deliberate lack of responsiveness to community concerns; institutional arrogance; general malaise; absence of caring about the community concerns; self-centeredness incubated in the selfish cocoon of monopoly; and unhappy employees. MWH has a host of damaging bad habits that will take herculean effort and discipline to correct.

    Where are the stout defenders of MWH in our community? They do not seem to speak up as often as those who receive inconsiderate or injurious care at MWH. Why does MWH not respond to patient criticism publicly? Will MWH break the habit of ducking behind the privacy of patient and personnel and continue to ignore complaints? MWH could readily respond without violating either privacy concern if they wanted to do so. Where is the all court press to respond to patient care criticism? Where is the MWH effort similar to their trying to prevent HCA from cracking the MWH monopoly? Why does MWH refuse to tell the community specifically what it is doing to prevent future recurrences of the problems noted? If they did, it might begin to change the course of its reputation in the direction of its advertised words. Mere lip service without specifically informing the community of what it is doing to correct problems and prevent future recurrences appears at odds with their core values . . . we are accountable for what we do. Sadly, it appears that no one is accountable for anything at MWH. MWH will not succeed in resurrecting its public reputation as long as it refuses to respond publicly and specifically how it resolved each problem the community raises publicly and specifically.

    Does management at MWH, starting with Fred Rankin, take ownership of any of the problems that concern the community? If they don’t, the problems will never be corrected. Are they more concerned about finding fault and casting blame on others rather than rolling up their sleeves to solve the problem? Do they manage by walking around? Are they out of their offices instructing, correcting and otherwise setting the example at the point of the problem? After corrections are made, is there effective and consistent follow up to ensure the problem does not recur? Or are the managers under the influence of the opiates of new age business management exemplified by customer service surveys to the exclusion of accomplishing what the community wants to occur? I suspect the answer to this one is managers are deluded by the surveys and believe good surveys means no problems exist. Otherwise they would be out of their offices walking around talking with subordinates, patients and superiors tends to uncover small problems before they become big problems that lead to solutions sooner than later. Determination and consistency of oversight are keys to turnaround and success. Perhaps the lack of accountability is evidence of lack of concern for the community and patients.

    Does MWH pay more attention to deflecting questions and preventing probing inquiry than it does to delivering caring and high quality patient care one would expect from a magnet nursing hospital?

    Employee fear is likely incubated within the culture of MWH (if you break the rules you will be fired). It serves to prevent disclosure of information potentially harmful to patients. Although this may be a case of perception becoming reality, MWH management does not appear to be interested in dispelling the perception. What happens when employee suggestions to improve and correct is viewed by managers as dissent, perhaps even insubordination? The employee/messenger of unpleasant information is often treated harshly with the full support of all levels of management. What impact does this cultural habit have on initiative? It stifles it.

    MWH seems to reinforce the perception further by holding the club of dismissal over the heads of employees who could cause damage or harm to MWH’s reputation or loss of trust with its patients even if such disclosures could result in preventing patients from potential or known harm or injury through treatment or care. This fearful reluctance to speak where attribution may remotely occur suggests the internal MWH culture is at odds with the MWH external culture that all is well and the community is mistaken. Is MWH at odds with its mission to improve the health status of all people within the community? Is MWH at odds with its core values . . . we are honest, trustworthy and ethical; we are accountable for what we do?

    Despite MWH’s PR efforts to create a reputation for high quality patient care, Henry Ford nailed it when he observed that you can’t build a reputation on what you’re going to do. HCA appears to be quietly building a reputation for competence and good patient care though they too have stumbled a few times. The difference between MWH and HCA is that the former trumpets what it seems unable to deliver while the latter is likely busy correcting their problems.

    Fred Rankin, his executives and MWH managers should benefit from a couple observations from one of our nation’s preeminent promoters, P.T. Barnum who observed that:

    1. Politeness and civility are the best capital ever invested in business. Large stores, gilt signs, flaming advertisements, will all prove unavailing if you or your employees treat your patrons abruptly.

    2. Men who drive sharp bargains with their customers, acting as if they never expected to
    see them again, will not be mistaken. They will never see them again as customers. People don’t like to pay and get kicked also.

    The Free Lance-Star is vulnerable to MWH using it to provide MWH with additional competitive advantage. I have a great deal of respect for the FL-S’s integrity and would not like to see the FL-S become the monkey to MWH’s organ grinder.

    Perhaps the community would be as pleased as me to see independently corroborated information that my suppositions about Fred Rankin, MWH senior executives and the MWH employer-employee culture are simply wrong. I do not anticipate we will have that opportunity while Rankin remains the CEO. The executive suite culture simply has to change to deliver loudly and publicly on their core values . . . we are honest, trustworthy and ethical; we are accountable for what we do. That starts with new management throughout the executive suite.

  • Stafford Native

    I truly hate Mary Washington Hospital.I have lived i this area all of my life.MWH is the only ER close.My experiences at MWH ER Dept.Have been horrible.I have waited in the ER waiting room for 6-7 hours.To been seen by a doctor,While miscarrying.My husband had kidney stones,He passed out in the waiting area,while waiting on a doctor.I have had so many bad experiences with this hospital.I would rather be left for dead than to be taken to Mary Washington Hospital.The people that work there seem more interested in there personal lives and gossip, than the people waiting to be seen.But after each bad experience always expect a unreasonable bill! No matter how good your insurance is..

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