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Pictured above: Krista Boston, left, and Val Cooke of Continuing Care pose by the Hall of Results, which features posters on key measurements tracked by the administration.
Top state leaders recently heard about efforts in the DHS Continuing Care Administration to measure progress toward such policy goals as helping seniors return to their homes after a nursing home stay and helping people with disabilities move to homes of their own. DHS Commissioner Lucinda Jesson introduced the team to her colleagues at Gov. Mark Dayton’s senior leadership meeting Oct. 9, calling Continuing Care’s work a model for the rest of the agency.
Continuing Care’s focus on measurement grew out of a “commitment to first-rate public service” and an understanding that “what gets measured gets done,” said key presenter Bob Meyer, Continuing Care’s director of fiscal management and performance measurement.
Having started with professional training in January 2008, Continuing Care began its “Hall of Results” later that year to display posters showing progress on a number of measurements that relate to four key Continuing Care Administration goals:
Valerie Cooke, Alternative Payment System Project director in the Nursing Facility Rates and Policy Division, and Krista Boston, Consumer Choices director in the Aging and Adult Services Division, presented on two measurements from their areas:
Loren Colman, assistant commissioner for Continuing Care, noted that having spent much of his career in the private sector he was surprised, coming to DHS, at how specifically government focused on two- or four-year planning cycles. Even with the private sector’s keen focus on quarterly results, private sector boards of directors want at least five-year strategic plans for the organizations they oversee, Colman said.
“We began to try to influence our culture and blend five-to-10-year and even 20-year planning while respecting the two-year biennial state budget realities,” Colman said. “Taking time to create a vision for what senior services and services for people with disabilities may look like in the future helps us arrive at shorter-term initiatives that move us toward that strategic vision.”
In addition to supporting policy direction, Continuing Care’s focus on performance measurement has proven to be satisfying, engaging and empowering for staff, Meyer said.
In next steps, Continuing Care will be working more closely with external stakeholders and partners to improve results.
Continuing Care’s Hall of Results outside the elevator bank on the Elmer L. Andersen Human Services Building's third floor includes posters with updated results on 10 measurements, which also include: