Cornell University

Healthcare Transformation Project

16 East 34th Street, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10016 Contact: 212-340-2809

About the Healthcare Transformation Project

The Healthcare Transformation Project of Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations assists union and management leaders establish pioneering activities to improve patient care, implement needed organizational changes to control healthcare costs, and increase access to care. We are dedicated to disseminating best practices, facilitating systems change, and creating sustainable solutions to improve healthcare delivery. One of our significant areas of current work is the development of integrated delivery systems. We promote breakthrough strategies involving collaborative activities with all critical stakeholders to accelerate the design of new processes and structures. Working with both unions and management, we create innovative strategies to engage front-line staff in identifying problematic practices and to seek their advice in developing sustainable new care systems.

The Healthcare Transformation Project draws upon a wealth of resources from the multidisciplinary faculty at the Cornell School of Industrial and Labor Relations, the School of Human Ecology and the Weill/Cornell Medical College. We also have strong relationships with both national and international hospital management, healthcare practitioners, union leaders, and other institutes both in the U.S. and abroad involved in delivery system innovation and change processes.

Our key areas of work are aimed at: educational activities to facilitate knowledge-building and collaboration among labor and management leaders, action-research to discern and apply best practices for restructuring healthcare delivery, and outreach/consulting to improve the efficiency and quality of hospitals and community healthcare centers. Current projects and interests include:

Educational Activities

  • International healthcare conference in May, 2010 to examine innovative approaches to improving delivery systems
  • Spring semester undergraduate Cornell course offering: “Work, Health, and Healthcare”
  • Webcast series to address current issues and innovations in the healthcare industry 
    • First broadcast entitled “How innovative auto industry practices could help transform health care” slated for January 19, 2011
    • Future topics for 2011 will include the role of nurses and nursing unions and workforce development

Action Research

  • Transitions to integrated delivery systems case studies at Montefiore Medical Center, Maimonides Medical Center, Fairview Hospital, and Kaiser Permanente
  • Involvement of front-line staff and unions to improve quality of care, decrease costs and transform healthcare delivery systems
  • Implementation of integrated delivery systems in safety-net hospitals

Outreach and Consulting Work

  • Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh, PA
  • LAC + USC Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA
  • Maimonides Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY
  • National Association of Public Health Hospitals and Health Systems Fellows program
  • Creating a learning collaborative for Safety-Net Hospitals to help with transformation practices to become an integrated delivery system

The Healthcare Transformation Project in the ILR School at Cornell University is currently in the process of transitioning to an interdisciplinary, Cornell University-wide institute to expand its exploration of the intersections of work, health, and healthcare.