Series of theme Facing Death – Part 1: Dr. Jean-Marcel Guillon: The gentleman who persists in forming medical ethnic for the hospital

Speaking of medical ethics, people immediately think of a doctor. But few people know that it is exactly the hospital where do need medical ethics as first? Dr. Jean-Marcel Guillon, with his team, has been having the determination of building the medical ethics based hospital. At FV Hospital, ethics is the persistence, persevering in creating the safest hospital for its patients.

In September, 2016, we had a chance to meet Ms. Paula Wilson, President and General Director of the Hospital quality assessment organization from the U.S – JCI (Joint Commission International) on the occasion of her visit to FVH after attending Hospital Management Asia in Ho Chi Minh City. We asked her, “If you talk about FV Hospital in just one sentence, what would you say?” “Simply, from the leaders to the staffs, all have a passion whenever waking up in the morning that is to support the patients.” She asked us to write about the difficulty to achieve that passion of those who are working in the health industry. Without such passion to work, to care for others, no one could do this task.

That answer prompts us to write a story of a hospital called FV. The story starts with the Doctor named Jean-Marcel Guillon.

Building a hospital by taking the same feel of patients

Jean-Marcel Guillon is a doctor. He came to Vietnam on a charity visit. By then, he decided to return to Vietnam, setting up his big ambition: building the international hospital that   “bringing world class standard health care to Vietnam”.

At FV Hospital, on the white walls, you’ll find over 400 artworks hanging around. They’re inside the elevators, lounges areas and along the aisles. In the cafeteria, you can listen to jazz and enjoy a cup of coffee while waiting for the examination results.

Dr. Guillon said: “FV was designed based from the feelings and emotions of the patients. These miserable people are usually afraid of hospital environment. It’s no need for them to see the body image or blood vessels, but only a comfortable atmosphere surrounding is necessary. FV hospital is such a place. It’s quiet, relaxing one with soft sofas for people easily sit down to enjoy delicious snacks and listen to smooth music.

Clearly, with a lot of money you can build a modern hospital, but only with a truly empathetic mind and heart of understanding patients’ desires such as that of Dr. Jean-Marcel Guillon, you would be really able to create that kind of hospital.

Managing a hospital: Nothing is secret!

You may be able to build a beautiful hospital, but where to find good staffs? Dr. Jean-Marcel Guillon said, other hospitals may have pride in their equipment, but FVH is proud of the team of doctors, nurses and mentors who have kind heart and strictly adhere to the procedure of the most rigorous treatment. And above all, they always try to do their best helping patients overcome the battle of life and death.

Being asked about the secret success of managing the hospital quality at FV hospital, Dr. Guillon replied, “I will not share any secret, because there is no secret!” I am not permitted to tell the patient that they would receive a… so-so quality service. This does not exist. It is quality or no quality. We determine high quality which means we have to put the patient’s safety first.

The strongest message he gives to his team is just a simple sentence:

Do not do the wrong process!

It is not easy for more than 1,000 people, from medical specialists to the hygiene workers, to consistently follow JCI procedures consisting of 360 standards and 1,200 criteria, the international medical certificate that FV had achieved with the impressive score of 9.8/10. Dr. Jean-Marcel Guillon has established each instructional template by himself. He personally built a working culture for FVH with his own practice.

For him, hospital quality management is a very meaningful task. A good doctor can only help treatment for a few dozen patients each month. But improving a good procedure can help hundreds of health care workers work better and support more efficiently and safely for thousands of patients. ”

As a leader, Dr. Jean-Marcel Guillon realized that the attitude a hospital manager should has is to build the hospital with the highest safety standards for the patients. That is the ethics of a hospital, not just the medical ethics of a doctor.

Assertive and not compromised

FV Hospital was established in 2003. At that time, private hospital was not very popular. It was common for having “tip envelope culture” in many hospitals then, while at FV hospital, that kind of behavior was quite the opposite. At FV hospital, it’s definitely not permitted for any nurses and doctors to receive money from patients to get the priority of medical treatment.

When we questioned him whether counterfeit medication appears at FVH, he assured that it is impossible. Why? First, FVH has a JCI examined strict process of medication selection. Medication management is one of the most important chapters of the JCI standard. Secondly, FVH “resists” counterfeit drug matter by applying a culture of safety and strictly process compliance which are updated openly and consistently.

Sharing with us about the core values of the practitioner’s guidebook, Dr. Guillon emphasizes: “We consider the health and well-being of patients as top priority and treat our patients with compassion and respect.” With a very specific reference to a breast cancer case, he expressed his attitude: “I support surgery to remove breast tumors rather than mastectomy.”

The reason is simple: “Because we also respect the integrity of a woman’s body beside the concern about the treatment result.” It is not enough to just well cure the patient, it is necessary to pay attention to the good quality of his life after the treatment.

Recently, FV has implemented a price adjustment strategy for more people to gain the chance to access to FV treatment. From a leader perspective, although Dr. Jean-Marcel Guillon is influenced by many factors of business, he would rather work harder to optimize the system to reduce costs, but not reduce the treatment quality as it can affect the patient safety.

All that Dr. Jean-Marcel and his team are persevering in is the belief of medical ethnic. The reason is simply that it’s not easy to work in the medical industry because they have to work on people alive and facing to the life and death, as well.