The Power of “Impact”

Premier Pulse     October 2023

1134192644By Andre Harris, MD, chief medical officer, Miami Valley Hospital

“Impact” is a powerful word reverberating across disciplines, industries, and human experiences. At its core, impact signifies the effect or influence of one object or entity on another. The concept of impact transcends mere physical interactions; it extends to ideas, emotions, societies, and even epochs.

At its heart, health care is about humanity's endeavor to alleviate suffering, extend quality of life, and promote holistic well-being. The impact of providing health care can be seen and felt at multiple levels: individual, societal, economic, and global. Its significance cannot be overstated, as the repercussions of health care delivery ripple across communities and generations.

The late Maya Angelou stated, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will NEVER forget how you made them feel.” This is the heart of impact. Your impact as a health care provider may be as technical as cardiothoracic surgery, as necessary as helping someone to the restroom, or as critical as keeping the room clean. All these acts have an impact.

At the individual level, effective health care can mean the difference between life and death. It has the power to transform the trajectory of a person's life. A timely diagnosis, an innovative treatment, or even a reassuring conversation can instill hope, reduce pain, and provide a renewed lease on life. For many, access to quality health care ensures the ability to work, care for families, and participate in community life.

Emotionally, the words we say, the actions we take, and the choices we make leave impacts that can be both temporary and permanent. A kind gesture can alter someone's day, while traumatic experiences can shape lifetimes. The butterfly effect, a term from chaos theory, suggests that even minor events can have significant widespread consequences, making every action, word, and thought a potential point of impact.

Be the impact that you want to receive in your life. Intentionally decide to have a positive effect on patients and colleagues. If this is our goal, Premier Health will be in the best position “to inspire better health.” 

Back to the October 2023 issue of Premier Pulse

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