Seattle study tour

Seattle is a hub of innovation and home to some of the world's biggest and most successful corporations. On this programme you'll get the chance to compare and contrast health care systems and the way they deal with issues such as patient safety, corporate governance, organisational design and the use of technology to transform clinical and managerial practice.

Who is it for?

This programme is particularly relevant to senior clinicians and managers who are leading system, organisational and service change. Past participants have included chief executives, directors, senior managers and lead clinicians. We keep the programme small and select to allow maximum benefit to participants.

How will you benefit from this study tour?

If you are serious about finding out how system design can be used to improve clinical quality and patient safety, there is no better place to visit. US health care organisations are early adopters of new technology. The organisations we visit on the tour are not-for-profit, working in a high-pressure, competitive environment with patient safety and clinical quality at the heart of their business.

This programme is also a great opportunity to get the time and space to think about issues such as clinical and corporate governance, and new ways to involve patients in their care.

We saw some truly amazing things – in terms of new technology and patient care. The tour made me appreciate the NHS even more – for its universality, and for its attempt to provide a complex health system where the different parts talk to each other. It was a good opportunity to appreciate the similar pressures that colleagues from all parts of the health service experience. In fact, I felt like I fitted in, and as a medic that was an unexpected pleasure.

Medical leader, NHS trust

What will you do on this study tour?

You will have the chance to visit different health care organisations, including:

  • Virginia Mason, leader in the application of LEAN
  • Harborview Medical Centre, a teaching hospital that provides leading-edge teaching, research and clinical care for all patients
  • Boeing, the world's largest aerospace company and the leading manufacturer of commercial jetliners and military aircraft combined
  • Microsoft in Health, a worldwide leader in software, services and solutions.

You will see how technology is helping these organisations to connect with users and to improve patient access, patient care and clinical quality using robust, evidence-based systems.

You will discuss the use of clinical data to provide incentives to clinicians as they improve the quality of their practice. Visiting these not-for-profit and government organisations will give you an incredible insight into how clinicians and managers can live out their values and provide excellent customer service in a business-orientated environment.