Home' The Source : Fourth Quarter 2017 Contents solutions. “There’s so much innovation
going on in healthcare that we also bring
in outside solutions to see how they might
fit here,” says Chip Blaufuss, assistant vice
president of strategic innovation at HCA
The Mayo Clinic’s Center for Innovation
works directly with senior Mayo Clinic
leaders to create solutions that will help
achieve strategic priorities. Individual
projects may originate with staff at
the dedicated center or with anyone else
in Mayo’s system who seeks the center’s
help in solving a problem or developing
a new idea.
Many successful healthcare innovations
involve a good deal of collaboration. For in-
stance, Trinity Health recently challenged
colleagues and external organizations
to submit proposals for reducing the
readmission rate for dual-eligible bene-
ficiaries of Medicare and Medicaid. The
health system is now conducting pilot
projects at Trinity Health facilities around
some of the submitted suggestions.
MEETING COMPLEX NEEDS
Hospitals and healthcare partnerships continue to unveil
innovations that help meet needs on multiple fronts, most notably
the way care gets delivered to patients. Among the positive effects:
—— Increased patient satisfaction ——
At the Mayo Clinic, the department of obstetrics and
gynecology collaborated with the Center for Innovation to develop
the “OB Nest,” a new way for pregnant women and their families
to experience prenatal care. Traditionally, prenatal care consists
of 12–14 doctor visits, most of which are brief check-ins. While
research shows that fewer visits are fine for healthy patients,
previous attempts to reduce the number of visits resulted in lower
patient satisfaction scores.
OB Nest, designed specifically for women with low-risk preg-
nancies, overcame this hurdle, freeing up doctors’ time for sicker
patients while leading to higher patient satisfaction scores and
perceived value. In a pilot study, participants were assigned a
nurse as their lead contact, scheduled for eight office visits—with
an option to add more—and provided with home monitoring
equipment so they could check their baby’s fetal heart rate and
their own maternal blood pressure whenever they wanted. The
mothers-to-be could also opt to participate in an online community
with other participants and nurses.
AmSurg, which owns and operates more than 250 ambulatory
surgery centers throughout the United States, implemented
“Patient Connect,” an engagement program focused on commu-
nicating promptly with patients. The program consists of a web
platform (and will eventually include a mobile app), through
which patients can obtain procedure results, better understand
risks associated with pathological findings and schedule fol-
low-up procedures, if needed. The platform directly links the
patient to available procedure times for appointment schedul-
ing, says Eric Thrailkill, vice president and chief information
officer for AmSurg.
At HCA, leaders understand that patients and their family
members often have difficulty getting around a hospital campus.
Since most people are familiar with Google Maps’ blue dot navi-
gation, HCA incorporated it into a new wayfinding mobile app.
Developed with the help of an outside provider, the app shows
users their current location on the hospital campus. Users can
also input their destination, such as the nursery, for step-by-step
directions to get there.
“Blue dot wayfinding was our answer to how we could bring
technology from outside healthcare into our organization and
help people get around better, improving the patient and family
experience,” Blaufuss adds. The system has been deployed at one
hospital with plans to expand in the near future.
—— Improved patient care and safety ——
Pediatric orthopedic surgeons at Alder Hey use a 3-D print hub to
provide printed models of patients’ spines for preoperative planning
and as a reference to guide them through complex spinal proce-
dures. An outside partner converts CT scan images of a patient’s
spine into a 3-D printable format, which then allows a sterilized,
life-size model of that spine to be printed and used as a model in
the operating room.
Continued on page 38
Innovators designed the OB Nest to provide prenatal
care for women with low-risk pregnancies that would
save doctors’ time for sicker patients and still provide
value and patient satisfaction.
36 The Source | Fourth Quarter 2017
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