Dr. Alton Ochsner, one of the five founding physicians of today’s Ochsner Health System, wrote a creed—Alton Ochsner’s Creed—that contains prescriptions for living a meaningful life. The precepts of this creed underlie quality care-giving and care-receiving at Ochsner. Among the precepts are the following: to “develop to the utmost of one’s God-given talents”; to “utilize every waking moment to improve oneself spiritually, educationally, physically”; to “be honest with others and with self”; and to “develop and maintain a positive attitude.”

These proverb-like quality-driven statements embody the values that are the foundations of patient-centered care—the essence of integrative or holistic healthcare.

For Alton Ochsner, quality healthcare resulted in a satisfied patient, one who had been cared for in a holistic fashion by caregivers who paid attention to the body, mind, and spirit. As the years passed, Alton Ochsner’s desire to integrate quality care with compassionate care became known throughout the community and enhanced the reputation of the hospital and its healers.

To continue this dynamic, the administration at Ochsner developed the Institute of Medicine, Education, and Spirituality (IMESO) in 2011. An important part of IMESO’s mission is to offer educational programs and services that integrate the life of the mind, body, and spirit for both caregivers and care-receivers. This integration in caregivers improves the quality of care they offer to patients. This integration in care-receivers enhances the journey of healing, both physiologically and psychologically.

IMESO’s programs and services provide a culture that recognizes and dignifies the spiritual nature of people. These programs and services enhance the workplace environment and thus make it possible for employees to meet and exceed challenging expectations in a challenging workplace.

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