The Denver Health perioperative department is no different than most. With the 18 operating rooms across two different areas, there is a lot of coordination that takes place. The process starts with surgeon request, then goes through scheduler review, then insurance authorization, then surgical preparations, and finally lands on the day of surgery. Our institution uses Epic as our electronic medical record. Each of these steps in the case process often lives within its own little silo of an application within the integrated system that is Epic. This, in the past, has made breakdowns in the case scheduling and surgery preparation process hard to track down and thus hard to resolve.
In order to address this issue, we developed a somewhat novel way of displaying data. Instead of having a dashboard specific to surgeon work, one specific to case scheduler work, one specific to insurance authorization users, etc. we developed a dashboard that displays all information from all users across the lifecycle of the surgical case. This involved displaying typically siloed data by user role instead in the columns side by side. The development of this tool was an incredible collaborative effort across all the teams involved, which included perioperative business, insurance authorization, surgeon leadership, the Epic team, and executive leadership. We met weekly for quite awhile to determine the needs of each group in a collaborative environment.
The result in all of this was set of groups that typically have breakdowns in communication being all on the same page. By developing the tool as a group, everyone was aware of how all items were defined across all the groups. This also has increased confidence in the data being seen by each group, again breaking down silos of one group seeing similar data points defined in slightly different ways. The final piece of positive impact was the ability to now better identify breakdowns in workflows through transparency. We have seen less “finger-pointing” for breakdowns and better communication across departments to resolve any issues that arise.
I would plan to display our process of tool development, implementation process, and benefits of this novel approach to displaying data. I hope to also provide testimonials from leadership on how they perceived its benefit has been over previous processes/data displays.
Learning Outcome: After completing this learning activity, the participant will be able to assess innovations being used by other professionals in the specialty and evaluate the potential of implementing the improvements into practice.