Biometric identification is a national best practice — but adapting that to a local environment isn’t easy. Although it’s rare, confusing an identity can have scary consequences (like getting a prescription for a drug you’re allergic to.) So Doug Ostler and his team worked to implement palm scanners and make patients feel safer.
Evidence-based practice (EBP) integrates clinical expertise with the best available evidence to drive innovation and improvement. Sue Childress, director of nursing at Huntsman Cancer Institute, champions the process in advance of the 5th Annual Evidence Based Practice Council Poster Fair.
Utah's value engineers turn any real-world event into a cause for improvement. Recently, senior value engineer Will McNett and a friend were swept up in an avalanche, traveling 50 yards down the southeast face of Albright Peak in Grand Teton National Park. What many would consider terrifying, Will considered a cause for observation, investigation, analysis, and improvement.
Is zero possible? In the case of central line infections, the answer was once no. A CLABSI (central line associated blood stream infection) was once considered a car crash, or an expected inevitability of care. When University of Utah’s Burn Trauma Intensive Care Unit started treating CLABSIs like a plane crash, or a tragedy demanding in-depth investigation and cultural change, zero became possible.
Delivering a great health care experience is only possible with one crucial component: reliable scheduling. It’s such an essential part of efficient operations, in fact, that the University of Utah Health created an access optimization team to help providers across the system.
Sterile Processing runs a lean operation, delivering millions of instruments to University of Utah Health’s procedural teams. Director of value engineering Steve Johnson, assisted by the video wizardry of Charlie Ehlert, sheds light on our system’s unseen infection prevention heroes.
Engineer Cindy Spangler compares canyoneering and surgery and identifies a common thread: the need for high-reliability processes. She describes how surgical time-out, a quick huddle to debrief before surgery, can serve as a useful model for reducing the risk of harm in canyoneering.
The dojo welcomes guest author and senior value engineer Will McNett with a deep dive into clinic capacity utilization. McNett borrows from manufacturing to offer a framework to measure and increase what really matters to patients: time spent with their provider.
Using improvement methodology to solve one piece of America’s opioid epidemic. Dr. Sean Stokes and team used the practice of scoping to focus on one population and one procedure to achieve manageable, measurable improvement.
Want to show your new employees that you respect them and you’re committed to making things better? Social work manager Kevin Curtis used University of Utah Health’s value improvement methodology to confront one of the most common challenges in health care—getting patients from the ED to a bed. Using concepts from lean and six sigma, Curtis identified waste, prioritized root causes, and fostered his team’s shared purpose in getting patients quickly to care.
Improvement science is about making everyday tasks easier and faster. This week, Steve uses the 6-phase value improvement methodology to build a highly-reliable morning routine.
This week, Steve describes a genius (yet simple) data collection tool: the check sheet. Colline Prasad and the SSTU nursing team used check sheets in their work reducing call lights, a project that turned out to be a triple-win; an intervention that improved patient perception of responsiveness, increased patient safety, and decreased nurse distraction.