Going negative to reach positive – A novel approach to a large group Intervention

The Texas Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) program incentivizes hospitals and other providers in the state to improve access to care and how care is delivered, targeting Medicaid enrollees and low-income uninsured individuals.

An eastern Texas-based university health science center serves as the administrative anchor provider for two DSRIP Regional Healthcare Partnerships covering 18 counties in central and eastern Texas. Its program directors, comprised of healthcare professionals from many organizations, had been working hard together to identify future sources of funding and other mechanisms to sustain their programs. Their intensive effort had culminated in frustration and burnout among members with limited viable solutions in sight. Furthermore, the group faced the added pressure of having to report their sustainability plans to the state. The member anxiety was high, and the overall group morale was low.

John was engaged to help reinvigorate the group and lead them toward a more productive path. Rather than overlook the negativity that had developed and now engulfed this group, John designed and facilitated a novel, two-part interactive workshop that first leaned into the challenge through “negative brainstorming” to generate reverse goals. This was followed by a renewed guided effort to generate positive, productive insights and ideas. Ultimately, this clarified a path forward to identify solutions that would achieve the primary goals. According to client feedback, the attendees found the brainstorming activity energizing, positive and productive, and came away with new ideas about how to approach sustainability, which included new strategies and concrete actions for further analysis and development.