Information Systems

The hospital CEO's ultimate dashboard: What to check each day, quarter and year

Patient Satisfaction guru Quint Studer describes the CEO's "ultimate" dashboard in a recent Becker's Hospital Review article. The dashboard is a concise selection of metrics for laser-focusing on the issues that drive results. These metrics fall into four "buckets": productivity, volume, clinical quality and service.Laboratory Cost Improvement: Achieve cost savings using labor productivity and expense

Laboratory Cost Improvement: Achieve cost savings using labor productivity and expense

This recent presentation provides an approach for labor and non-labor cost reduction using internal and external benchmarks. The benchmarks are based on extensive experience by the author's organization. The presentation includes productivity benchmarks for the various types of specialties within the typical hospital lab.

The life of a healthcare CIO: St. Bernards Healthcare's Mark Odom

Just like many IEs in healthcare, Mark Odom started his career in manufacturing right out of college. He has found many valuable lessons from manufacturing that he now uses as the CIO of St. Bernards Healthcare.

Healthcare's digital future: McKinsey & Company

Insights from the McKinsey & Company international survey can help your healthcare organizations plan your next moves in the journey toward full digitization. The authors believe the healthcare industry is on the cusp of a third wave of IT adoption and that now is the time for it to go all in on digital strategies. Understanding what patients want - and what is purely myth - can help pave the way.

Practice Fusion launches free real-time database

Cloud-based electronic health record vendor Practice Fusion has launched a continuously updated database of de-identified patient information.

Apple reveals newest app. Could it change healthcare?

After months of anticipation, Apple recently unveiled its new health app - its cloud-based information platform known as "HealthKit," and a slew of new partnerships with Epic Systems, Mayo Clinic and a number of other hospitals.The open question: Will Apple's big play for the health care market end up changing the industry - and if so, how soon?

Predictive analysis for employee retention

Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare had a nurse retention problem. Between 80 percent and 90 percent of the system's nurses left within the first year, and a growing number were leaving before the 90-day mark.

How big data helped cut emergency room visits by 10 percent

Starting in 2012, Washington emergency rooms began tracking patients in a mandatory, statewide database as part of an effort to supply the necessary health information to divert patients from trips to emergency rooms for non-urgent problems. Dr. Nathan Schlicher, an ER doctor who serves on the board of the Washington State Medical Association, said the Emergency Department Information Exchange has given hospitals a way to monitor patients and keep hospitals up-to-date regarding patients' health records.

Can mobile health technologies transform healthcare?

This article in JAMA describes the case for adoption of mobile health technologies (mHealth) and the potential for future application from a clinician's perspective.

Modeling and optimizing emergency department workflow

The authors of this presentation describe how industrial engineering research improved patient access and reduced cost by applying a machine learning simulation approach at Grady Health System in Atlanta.

Efficient clinical workflows enhance user acceptance and other EHR benefits

This was a presentation at the 2013 SHS Healthcare Systems Process Improvement Conference
Hospitals and health systems spend millions of dollars to acquire and meaningfully use certified EMRS and EHRS nationwide. This presentation from the 2013 SHS Healthare Systems Process Improvement Conference describes a for-profit health system's experience in deploying efficient workflows that lead to increased acceptance and usage by physicians and other stakeholders to realize many benefits including receiving CMS incentives.

Project management - "An Overview for IT"

This presentation provides a description for effective project management of IT projects that can be applied in healthcare.

Kaiser Permanente's healthcare IT Journey

This presentation (large download) at the 2012 World of Health IT Conference describes how Kaiser Permanente is successfully leveraging IT resources to improve patient care.

Ergonomics and technology: The future

"By standing for 2 hours throughout an average workday, you can burn 280 extra calories. In one year, that converts to roughly 20 pounds of weight loss. Results vary depending on body shape and metabolism."

In this presentation at the 2012 Healthcare Systems Improvement Conference, the author addresses the need to increase ergonomics awareness in and out of the workplace by exploring new technology such as tablets, readers and smartphones, their use and place in the work environment as well as the ever-changing workplace, including trends in the office and telecommuting.

Using electronic health records to improve quality and efficiency: The experiences of leading hospitals

This report from the Commonwealth Fund describes recent experiences of leading hospitals in implementing electronic health records. 

Wireless devices incite 'Medical Spring'

A recent article in the online journal Hospital and Health Networks describes a host of innovative, implantable, ingestible wireless medical devices being developed to advance medicine into the future. These technologies show potential to improve patient care, reduce medical errors and lower costs.

Lessons learned from moving to Web-based surgical requests

The authors delivered a presentation and paper at the 2011 SHS Conference providing a comprehensive case study of how the Sir Mortimer B. Davis-Jewish General Hospital in Montreal, Quebec, moved from a paper surgical request process to a web based system. The lessons learned described by the authors will be valuable for anyone undertaking a similar large scale IT change.

Meaningful Use: A brief overview for Society of Health Systems

Prevailing misperception is that implementing any EHR complies with HITECH ACT requirements and incentive qualification. EHR implementation is only one part of meaningful use. Meaningful Use depends on workflow, evidence based clinical practice, measurement and reporting. In this presentation prepared for SHS by Kevin Martin, meaningful use is described along with the practical applications for organizations providing clinical care.

Purdue industrial engineering researchers investigate using surgeon hand gestures to improve surgery

Vision-based recognition of hand gestures is being researched at Purdue University to control a robotic scrub nurse and access images during surgical cases. The research could lead to short case lengths and reduced infections according to the Purdue University News website.

Patient tracker

A case study of a centralized patient tracking system at Sentara Careplex Hospital in Hampton, Va. The case study shows how Sentara was able to reduce patient registration labor by over 50 percent and save over $300,000 per year.

University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers post final report on Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISyE) in Health Care

In research sponsored by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), UW researchers summarize findings and associated research from a 2009 conference in a report entitled Industrial and Systems Engineering and Health Care: Critical Areas of Research.

Improving Medical Equipment Availability at Barnes-Jewish Hospital

One hospital details improvements to their medical equipment retrieval, cleaning, and distribution process.

Centralized database plus socialized medicine equals distributed risk

This paper details the errors in medical history records that can occur over time within the present U.S. system, and proposes a solution.

Enhancing hospital health information management using industrial engineering tools

Lean tools and simulation are used to recommend improvements to HIM operational processes.

Lesson from the trenches: Implementation of an automated patient safety system

In this presentation given at the 2010 SHS/ASQ Healthcare Division Conference, the authors describe how a Baldrige Award winning hospital implemented a paperless continuous improvement patient safety system. The system is used for collecting patient safety events, and analysis, performance improvement, classification, and organizational knowledge building involving every single employee in the healthcare system. The automated patient system has dramatically improved event reporting and streamlined the analysis and follow-up.

Linking records from separate EHRs becomes a reality

An EMR is described that links physician and hospital records so that the same information is available in both doctors' offices and hospitals whenever the patient presents.  

SHS Focus: Online health resources

Quality Check is a resource summarizing the findings of all JCAHO survey results. This article describes the tool's potential applications.

SHS Staffing budgets: It’s not just FTEs

A system for appropriate oversight of budgeted FTE's is discussed.

SHS Synergistic research saves lives

An editorial proposes a nationwide repository for results of all medical research.

SHS A Life-Saving Role

Future advances in medical devices and informatics within health care IT are described in this article.

SHS Redesigning Emergency Department Care Delivery Focusing on Patient Safety

An ED is redesigned after patient flows were modeled using queuing theory.

SHS Simulation Medication: Studies Show Patient Flow Improvement

The process of creating and achieving approval of an ED simulation is discussed.

SHS Data Driven Decision Making to Control Pharmacy Costs

Pharmacy decision-making is discussed, with focus on controlling costs.

SHS Creating A Patient Centered Access Management System

Improvements to a provider appointment-making system are motivated, tested, and sustained

SHS Improving Health Care Quality in a Pediatric Ambulatory OR Setting

Improvements to a pediatric OR are proposed and tested with simulation.

SHS Breaking the Supply Chain Barrier: "Can I do this on my own?"

Successful supply chain management is discussed.  Examples show potential savings and describe the buy-in needed to achieve those dollars.

SHS In by 9 out by 6 - Load Leveling

Detailed description of a lean project to improve TAT in the CT Scan department.

SHS Using Lean Methodology to Improve Patient Safety and Clinical Quality

Three successful lean projects are discussed in detail.  Specimen Labeling, Surgery and Endoscopy Pre-Op, and Inpatient Nursing Crash Cart projects all demonstrate significant improvement.

SHS Reaching New Levels of Patient Safety Through Improved Specimen Labeling

Results of a hospital-wide specimen labeling lean project is discussed.

SHS Finding the Right Improvement Opportunities - BEST Bang for the Buck

A productivity monitoring system is installed and used for each department in the system to measure budget compliance, production efficiency, and patient satisfaction.  Decisions must be made regarding the weighting factors of each input to determine each department's relative score.

SHS Improving Pharmacy Operations Through Simulation

A pharmacy is simulated and the results are discussed.

SHS The Journey Toward a Lean ED

A 100,000 annual visit hospital ED is redesigned using lean principles. Wait times decrease and pt satisfaction and revenue increases.  Simulation shows further viability of new processes.  This presentation is made by a MD who became a lean coach.

SHS Going Beyond - Finding New Ways to Analyze Revenue Cycle Performance Improvement

Issues with billing denials can be addressed by creating and addressing a Pareto chart of top reasons for lack of payment.  This is analyzed through implementation.

SHS Creating a Flexible Position Control Process--Linking Management Engineering and Human Resources

Process improvement within the HR department is shown through this project dealing with RN flex staffing.

Justification of pay for performance

SHS Using Six Sigma Principles to Reduce Billing Errors

Billing error reduction as a Lean Six Sigma project

SHS IS CPOE Safe for Patients?

CPOE is implemented and results discussed.

SHS Optimization of Overtime Costs and Operating Room Utilization

A program is proposed that effectively confronts a majority of the issues with scheduling patient surgeries.

SHS Design the Greatest Emergency Department - Applying Basic & Advanced Lean Healthcare Tools!

The author facilitates a lean educational journey through an ED.

SHS Applying SHS Conference Learnings Back at the Ranch

Emergent Care was redesigned to decrease wait time significantly.

SHS Engaging Staff in Lean Improvements for Patient Care Settings

4 lean projects were performed - pharmacy, lab, outpatient clinic, and telemetry unit. Each project was meticulously documented in the presentation. Pre- and post- metrics are included, as well as a discussion of sustainability.

SHS Enhancing Hospital Health Information Management Using Industrial Engineering Tools

Lean principles are utilized during analysis and transformation of a HIM department. Results and lessons learned are discussed.

SHS Delivering Faster Lab Turnaround Through Lean

Lab collection and processing techniques are examined and improved. Results are discussed.

SHS Cost Justification of New Technology - Measuring ROI

Hospital IT implementations must make assumptions to generate and defend the ROI. Several assumptions relevant to initial facilities planning are considered within this presentation.

SHS Capturing Supply Charges in the Emergency Department: How and Why?

ED charge capture is a constant problem for hospitals. This presentation covers one system-wide approach to increasing the capture rate.

SHS Premium Pay - Are You Paying Too Much for Your Labor?

HCA discusses its methodology for monitoring its usage of premium pay to ensure they use as little as possible.

SHS Connecting the Revenue Cycle to the World Wide Web

A pre-registration Internet interface was successfully developed. Lessons learned and sustainability are also discussed.

SHS 5 Critical Success Factors to Achieving Positive Clinical/Financial Outcomes

RFID tags are a solution to the problem of losing items within hospital walls. This presentation discusses some of the requirements, accomplishments, and potential drawbacks of systemwide installation.

SHS Reducing Inventory Waste Through Material Pull

A pull system is implemented within a surgical suite, saving on inventory cost. Other accomplishments and lessons learned are discussed.

SHS A Six Sigma Approach to Denials Management

Payment denials were decreased, resulting in a cost savings of $1.6 million annually. This project steps through the list of improvements made.