Measuring the health of healthcare
Efficiency and return on investment (ROI) are important to everyone in the healthcare ecosystem, from individual contributors to executive decision makers. These healthcare stakeholders want solutions that make day-to-day work easier, that enhance clinical performance, that help them glean insights for quality improvement (QI), and create a profitable bottom line.
In looking for areas of opportunity in which to apply such solutions, clinical processes come to mind. Common hurdles in clinical processes create negative downstream impacts that impede those above-mentioned goals. These hurdles include:
- Analytics debt: overburdened analytics teams have data request queues as long as 12 months
- Clinical variation: staffing shortages and ineffective clinical decision support results in backsliding quality
- Clinician inefficiencies: electronic health record (EHR) difficulties and workflow challenges create bottlenecks
The cost of inaction
Not attending to these three critical areas results in a very real cost of inaction. Delays in curated, actionable data insights lead to widespread costs, totaling up to $4,000,000 per year or more. In addition, patient quality and safety are impaired because staffing challenges and other stressors are limiting adherence to best practices.
The impact of these urgent, yet addressable issues is clear. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the CDC reports a 47% increase in central line-associated bloodstream infections, a 45% increase in ventilator-associated events, and a 19% increase in catheter-associated urinary tract infections. Clinician inefficiency with poorly optimized workflows results in clinicians spending up to 4.5 hours per day in the EHR with extra clicks, interruptions, and frustration.
Roadmap for transformation and ROI
The path to improvement doesn’t have to be complex. Refining clinical processes (and, in turn, ROI) involves addressing the above challenges with technology that allows for the more efficient allocation of scarce resources, namely the focused attention of strategic personnel.
At a high level: in a rapidly changing and complex healthcare environment, improving electronic clinical workflows is necessary for improved outcomes, sustainable success, and profit. Working smarter with a trusted quality informatics and improvement partner ensures analytics teams operate “top of license” and optimize efficiencies.
Specifically, leveraging a SaaS-based healthcare platform that pairs with health systems’ existing tech is a proven strategy to increase bandwidth. And increasing bandwidth has downstream benefits that translate directly into better ROI. How so? Transforming raw data into actionable insights helps existing teams focus on clinical workflows that impact an organization’s ROI by:
- Identifying decision support deviations and detecting anomalies to address clinical variation;
- Using curated metrics to evaluate decision support design and govern decision support performance to mitigate clinician inefficiency; and
- Reducing analytics debt through mix-and-match metrics dashboards, out-of-the-box analytics, and high-yield automated reporting.
These actions reverse the draining costs of inaction. What’s more, investing in technology that improves efficiencies overall is a more accessible and scalable path forward.
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Innovative healthcare systems are saving time and money while improving patient outcomes and increasing organizational ROI in the three key areas of analytics debt, clinical variation, and clinician inefficiency. Download the full report to explore their success and discover wins that are repeatable in your own organization.
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