Collaboration

Medical Center Improves Patient Flow, Efficiency, With Web-Based Collaboration Solution

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Executive Summary

Good Shepherd Medical Center is a 425-bed, regional-referral medical center and the only Level II Trauma Center in Longview, Texas, that provides inpatient and outpatient services in multiple disciplines. In 2005, they implemented Emergency Department Information System (EDIS) from medical software provider MEDHOST. The EDIS provides patient tracking, charting, and order placement functionality through an easy-to-use touch-screen interface. While Good Shepherd consistently ranks high in patient quality and safety ratings, the leadership team knew that improving enterprise wide access to patient flow information and the resulting staff collaboration would improve cross-discipline communication and minimize human errors. A misinterpreted admission order, for example, could result in sending a patient to the wrong location or assigning a single nurse a large percentage of high acuity patients, further overwhelming the staff member and impeding efficient flow. Executives called for a technology solution to expose operational inefficiencies and specific areas for improvement. As more than 85 percent of admissions come through the ED, Good Shepherd executives turned to MEDHOST for help addressing its patient flow issues. Good Shepherd has improved patient flow and efficiency while enhancing patient safety and satisfaction through its use of OpCenter. The bar-graph display shows which nurses have the highest number of acute-care patients so that managers can avoid overloading individual nurses. And so far there have been successful operations.

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