Health Care

The Mediation Group has four areas of expertise that are relevant to health care: organizational development; cultivating collaborative interprofessional teams; conflict management tools; and medical malpractice mediation.

Organizational Development in Health Care

Health care is undergoing unprecedented change, and in order to successfully implement these changes health care organizations need to adapt. When change is done well, health care providers are able to provide a higher quality of patient care, reduce errors, manage costs, and improve morale. Although achieving this target is no easy task, there are some well-established approaches and methods that increase the likelihood that organizational change will be effective. The Mediation Group’s experienced health care consultants understand the process of change and what kinds of organizational development are necessary so providers and organizations can achieve the outcomes they are looking for. For more on our organizational practice, visit the organizations practice page and the organizational development page.

Collaborative Interprofessional Teams

Health care is rarely the treatment of acute conditions by solo practitioners. At every stage of life high quality health care depends on a team that collaborates across professions and organizational silos; effectively communicating in a timely, respectful manner; and using disagreement and conflict to surface different opinions that lead to improved patient care. The Mediation Group understands not only how to develop the interprofessional skills of health care workers, but also how to build the organizational and cultural supports that drive interprofessional collaboration. We do this all with sensitivity to the needs of the complex, fast-paced, life and death context of delivering high quality care. 

Constructive Conflict Management

Conflict occurs at many levels in the health care context. The Mediation Group has experience addressing conflict at each level, such as interpersonal and organizational conflict within senior medical leadership teams, designing systems for resolving disputes in the clinical context, and addressing cultural and organizational facilitators of interprofessional conflict (such as that between nurses and residents). Often our clients not only want to resolve the specific dispute, but are looking to leverage The Mediation Group’s expertise to improve their organizational and staff capacity to manage future conflicts. 

Mediation and Arbitration of Medical Malpractice Cases

The Mediation Group has years of experience mediating and arbitrating medical malpractice cases, and two of our panel members (Hon. George Jacobs and Hon. Kenneth Laurence) wrote the book on medical malpractice in Massachusetts.  We have long been persuaded that mediation can be a very effective method for resolving medical malpractice suits. Mediation allows for quicker resolution, bringing closure to a situation which is often painful for all involved. In addition, the mediation process is generally less intimidating, allowing more meaningful participation by the parties. Litigants frequently identify “not feeling heard” as one of the key motivations for filing malpractice claims; those who feel that they have an opportunity to speak and be heard are often more likely to agree to a settlement. We believe that mediation may also encourage exploration of creative resolutions beyond the negotiation of a monetary figure. Litigants often cite as a motivation that their actions will help to assure that “this never happens again” mediation is well-suited to pursuing more creative options. For those cases in which it might make sense to have the matter decided by a neutral third party, arbitration can be an excellent alternative.

Examples of Our Work

Over the years, The Mediation Group’s interdisciplinary team of organizational experts has done innovative and cutting-edge work with leading health care organizations such as Montefiore Hospital, Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector, Massachusetts Tobacco Control Program and Harvard University. Our work has addressed conflict between nurses and residents, helped to optimize operating room practices, and trained medical providers on how to disclose medical error. We have also received grants for health care work from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Pew Charitable Trusts See our public service page for more information. 

Our Experts in Health Care