Memorial Hospital and Manor wins statewide patient safety award for improved emergency department care

Published 5:40 pm Friday, January 20, 2017

ATLANTA – The Partnership for Health and Accountability (PHA) presented its prestigious Quality and Patient Safety Award to Memorial Hospital and Manor in Bainbridge for its project that improved the care of patients in the emergency department (ED). The project, titled, “ED Lean Project,” won second place in the Hospitals with Less than 100 Beds category. These annual awards recognize Georgia health care organizations for achievement in reducing the risk of medical errors and improving patient safety and medical outcomes.

The project engaged improving the ED patient throughput by focusing on evaluating the current decision making processes using Lean Six Sigma tools, specifically the DMAIC model (Define, Measure, Analyze, Implement and Continue).  The need for this metric was influenced by DNV requirements for metrics and continuous improvements.

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  The team determined through data analysis what primary paths forward needed to occur in three areas to improve patient throughput in the ED. The primary metrics to help sustain improvement became LWBS (left without being seen) and ED Supply Room Organization (cost). The project helped determine that there is significant benefit to patient care/hospital costs when the hospital addresses major contributing factors to wait times which relate to LWBS and elevated inventories in ED supply room management.

In addition to improving wait times for patients, the impact and focus on improvement is valued no less than a $155k cost avoidance year over year (2015 vs. 2016) due to the decrease in the number of LWBS incurred.

“An efficiently run emergency department is key to ensuring the fast and accurate care of patients who come through this area of the hospital,” said Georgia Hospital Association Chief Medical Officer Doug Patten, M.D. “We applaud Memorial Hospital and Manor, not only for its success in this area, but also for sharing best practices with other hospitals across the state so each has the opportunity to make critical progress in patient safety and ensure the best and safest care possible for patients.”