Our client, a not-for-profit hospital, wanted to enhance its Emergency Services procedures. We helped by assessing the hospital’s existing procedures, and making new reccomendations.
Redefining the Healthcare Experience. That was the guiding principle of this new hospital, part of a not-for-profit healthcare network, and also the challenge to the team designing new Emergency Services procedures for the facility. With the understanding that these new processes would be rolled out to other hospitals in the network, we began with a full assessment of the current procedures in use and how they could be improved. The focus included a number of key engagement drivers, such as:
- Ensuring that patients are involved in planning the next steps in their treatment
- Maintaining the same high quality of care among caregivers, regardless of time of day
- Eliminating or minimizing wait times – for patients and for Emergency Services team members
- Minimizing the time between a patient’s entry into the facility and physician contact, with an emphasis on critical diagnosis
- Increasing staff and physician satisfaction through better processes and a reduction of non-essential duties
Interviews, process mapping, data analysis, and a detailed review of current care delivery methods revealed huge areas of opportunity for improvement; for instance, analysis revealed that the staff was spending only 30 percent of their time at the patient bedside. The detailed process map enabled the team to identify non-value added steps, understand work-arounds that had been created over the years, and create efficiencies that would serve the facility well into the future. With a focus on elements that were “critical to quality” (CTQ) in the redesign process, new workflows took shape that emphasized CTQ elements such as physician triage, a streamlined admission experience, and service level agreements for physicians. Analysis of equipment needs and placement helped to design an environment that would support the new processes.
Within a month of the completed project, the new processes were implemented and the entire network began to see significant improvements to service, patient care, and the network’s bottom line:
- The 111-step admission process now takes 46 steps
- Time to admit was reduced by 14 percent
- Time between arrival and seeing a physician was reduced from 27 minutes to less than 3