OK, I realize it's an understatement, but I just have to say that 2011 has been one hectic year in health care. Anybody disagree?

In addition to doing what hospitals have always done — making sure the people who need care get it — how the system works is changing in some fundamental ways, and it's doing so at breakneck speed. A couple of years ago, accountable care, value-based purchasing, bundled payments and comparative effectiveness weren't even part of the lexicon. Now you not only have to understand what they mean in all their varied nuances, you also have to figure out how they impact the world in which you operate and adapt your organization accordingly. And you need to have started all that even before the Supreme Court officially chimes in and before we know the results of presidential and congressional elections that could blow just about everything out of the water. Good grief.

Here at Hospitals & Health Networks, we've been working overtime ourselves trying to keep up with all the information coming our way, and then to share what we've learned in ways that are most helpful to you and make the best use of your time.

In February we launched H&HN Daily, our e-newsletter that combines expert analysis, staff-written blogs, and video and podcast interviews with leaders in the field, all focusing on critical issues and trends affecting health care. Knowing that our readers' schedules are already bursting at the seams, we made a conscious decision to limit each installment of H&HN Daily to just two entries. The feedback has been gratifying, with readers telling us they appreciate the straightforward format and the ability to comment in real time. If you're not already signed up, go to www.hhnmag.com/hhndaily.

So what are we doing for an encore?

In January, we will launch a cover-to-cover redesign of Hospitals & Health Networks magazine. After several years of the current design, we felt it was time to freshen things up a bit. On a purely cosmetic level, we'll update the typefaces and introduce spiffy new graphics.

More importantly, we've thought long and hard about how today's busy readers access information, based in large part on surveys of hospital executives. As a result, the new design will feature what we hope is a more logical flow of commentary, analysis and news. Our coverage will be even more solutions-oriented, not only spelling out the challenge at hand, but also providing advice and examples from the field.

For me, the most exciting aspect of our redesign will be convenient, at-a-glance highlights of crucial concepts built into every article. These will include bullet points and an executive summary so that even when you don't have time to read the article in full, you'll come away with a good understanding of the issues covered.

Happy new year from all of us at H&HN.