Pascal Garel is the CEO of the European Hospital and Healthcare Federation (HOPE). Created in 1966 HOPE gathers 37 organisations from 30 countries, representing around 80% of hospital activity in Europe. HOPE helps to develop and maintain information about planning and operation of the hospital services and of the health systems in which they function as well as advising members on matters relating to standards of provision, organisation and operation of hospital services. HOPE also liaises and co-operates with international bodies concerned with health affairs such as the World Health Organisation and the Council of Europe. Under Garel’s guidance, the body organises regular events on upgrading hospital care including HOPE AGORA which sees professionals meeting to gain hands on experience and expertise exchange in a different host country each year.
What are your key areas of interest and research?
The diversity of healthcare systems in Europe.
I am fascinated by the huge diversity in the way care is delivered, organised and financed. Of course, I am also interested in what can be learned from this in the logical follow up steps we have been taking for the last 50 years. This is the core basis of the work of HOPE. It is, additionally, part of the identity of HOPE. This is also a field in which I teach and research.
What are the major challenges in your field?
Fragmentation is among the first of the major challenges. The degree varies, of course, from one country to the next, but it is a clear issue in the context of chronicity and ageing. Another challenge is that healthcare systems are deeply rooted in culture: it takes time to reform them for the best.
What is your top management tip?
Maintain values, trust and energy.
What would you single out as a career highlight?
Moving the organisation from a recognised and respected body into an influential European stakeholder.
If you had not chosen this career path what do you think you would have become?
A history teacher and researcher.
What are your personal interests outside of work?
Literature. Linked to this is the fact that I am a shareholder in a small bookshop. So you can see me selling books as well!
Your favourite quote?
“Diamonds are forever”.