For health care organizations looking to improve performance and patient experiences, implementing data-driven solutions can be effective when focusing on addressing health equity and reducing patient length of stay. These topics are explored in selected member-submitted abstracts from the 2020 Vizient® Connections Education Summit that appear in a special supplement to the July/August 2021 issue of the American Journal of Medical Quality, the official journal of the American College of Medical Quality (ACMQ).
Interventions for addressing health equity
To help health care organizations address health equity, Andrew S. Resnick, MD, MBA, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Karthik Sivashanker, MD, MPH, CPPS, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Tam Duong, MS, Institute for Healthcare Improvement, developed an intervention framework that “provides a road map for organizations to advance equitable and safe care to all patients by using current patient safety reporting mechanisms to identify events pertaining to explicit, implicit, individual, group, and structural biases.” The events identified are then analyzed to identify effective solutions and track their implementation. The authors tested the framework at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and saw an “80-fold increase in actions taken from root cause analysis to addressing inequities.” Learn more in the abstract “Equity Is a Patient Safety Emergency.”
Using data to reduce length of stay
Over the last four years, the Vizient length of stay (LOS) index at Memorial Hermann Texas Medical Center has had a downward trend that plateaued in the past year. The stall in the LOS index has led to nursing units reaching capacity and to an increase in patient wait times for beds. To ensure that resources are allocated appropriately, Stephen W. Simington, MS, MPH, Memorial Hermann Texas Medical Center, and Bela Patel, MD, Memorial Hermann Texas Medical Center/UT Health, developed a statistical dashboard using the Vizient Clinical Data Base to help the health system “identify data-driven opportunities that focus on maximizing resources in the greatest areas of opportunity.” The authors expect that the use of the tool and subsequent interventions will show a reduction in the LOS index over time. Learn more in the abstract “Four Clicks from Vizient Data to Actional Information.”
Background: Published bimonthly, the American Journal of Medical Quality (AJMQ) (www.ajmqonline.com) features original, peer-reviewed articles by noted experts in the field and is frequently cited as a literature source in medicine. AJMQ is focused on keeping readers informed of the resources, processes, and perspectives contributing to quality health care services. This peer-reviewed journal presents a forum for the exchange of ideas, strategies, and methods in improving the delivery and management of health care. Follow AJMQ on Twitter: @AjmQonline.