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Centralized Patient Transport = Better Hospital Operational Efficiency

Does your hospital currently employ a centralized patient transport department?

Centralized patient transport was the topic of the 5th session of “7 Ways to Master Operational Efficiencies in Your Hospital”, webinar series hosted by Maria Romano, Clinical Product Consultant at TeleTracking.

Maria kicked off The Benefits of a Centralized Patient Transport Department by outlining typical transporter responsibilities within a hospital system:

  • Discharges
  • Transfers
  • Tests
  • Runners for central sterile – picking up dirty equipment
  • Runners for clean equipment
  • Outpatient transportation
  • 2 stocking for each floor
  • Lab runs – stat and non urgent
  • Transporting charts to units in need

There’s a common misconception that hospital transporters are only responsible for discharges, when in fact they are a very important piece of the patient flow puzzle and do a lot of the hard work. When polling the webinar audience, an astounding 80% reported that they had no idea of the responsibilities that their transportation department were tasked with each day.

The Benefits of a Centralized Patient Transport Department

Most hospitals construct their mission statements to include the principles of operational efficiency, high quality and safety and the desire for hope and to heal. All of these principles require hospital patient transporters to become reality.

Here’s how this matters to hospital transporters:

  • Operationally Efficient: Expectation that patients will be where they need to be at the time that is requested.
  • High Quality & Safety: Patients that need to be transported to tests, surgeries and procedures are sent with the expectation that the patient will arrive safely – patients can deteriorate and IVs can stop which can cause unsafe situations.
  • To Hope and To Heal: Transportation employees help make this happen. The discharge process is the one of the most remembered Press Ganey patient experiences. Job satisfaction and low turnover produces patient transport employees who express passion for what they do.

Centralized Patient Tracking with TeleTracking’s TransportTracking

TeleTracking has a warm place in its corporate heart for hospital patient transporters. Their job was one of the first hospital functions to be automated some two decades ago when we developed the TransportTracking™ application.

TransportTracking™ was designed so that hospitals could streamline patient transport functions, as well as automate transport dispatches. Using the hospital’s existing telephone network to request and receive patient transport jobs, it enhances staff communication, reduces late pick-ups, minimizes schedule conflicts and helps identify transport-related delays.

This proven solution automatically and intelligently assigns patient transport requests while monitoring and balancing workloads to improve the flow of hospital patients – and contributing to the optimization of hospital operational efficiencies!

Maria outlined key features and functions of TeleTracking’s TransportTracking™ solution as follows:

 Flexible Dispatch-less Logic Automatic dispatching of the most appropriate transport employee and alerts for “distressed” jobs from the market leader in automated and intelligent patient transport dispatching.
 Customized Dispatching Transport departments can define custom TransportTracking™ dispatching set using weighted and flexible parameters such as proximity, priority and equipment possession. Outcomes of dispatching decisions are easily reviewed in real-time using the Dispatching Monitor.
 Integrated with Bed Management Discharge and transfer transports automatically. Critical patient information such as isolation conditions and multiple identifiers are shared with transport staff for increased safety.
Intelligent Voice Response Employees capture their activity with an easy to use, menu-driven IVR capability which is also Spanish language capable.
 Equipment Matching  This optional dispatching parameter can use an employee’s in-hand equipment as criteria to dispatch transport assignments, improving response times and decreasing wasted trips to return or acquire patient transport equipment.
  Enhanced Notification Options

 

 

A host of notification options provides automated and on-demand communication flexibility.

 

  • Instant Notify allows supervisors to immediately communicate information to employees.
  • Post-Dispatch Notifications automatically send job details to assigned employees.
  • Integrates with Vocera as a powerful communication conduit
 Sophisticated Reporting  Get sophisticated reports to measure employee performance and volume trends to better manage staff and forecast demand. Integrate with TeleTracking’s Custom Reporting Solution for even deeper analysis.

TransportTracking™ frees hospital supervisory staff from routine dispatching and employee supervisory duties to focus on higher priority issues. Automatic alerts on transport and employee activities communicate bottleneck issues for quick resolution. Detailed reports on employee activity and request volumes give supervisors the tools to efficiently staff and manage a productive transport operation.

Maria provided the followig 5 key benefits associated with implementing a centralized patient transport solution such as TransportTracking™:

  1. Discharges=Priority. TransportTracking™ allows for more in-hospital discharges
  2. Requests for transport come directly from Portal-no manual entry required
  3. Automatic alerts are triggered when transport related issues arise
  4. Intelligently assigns transport requests for employee workload balance
  5. Standard reports provide transparency on appropriate number of FTEs needed [with TeleTracking, Lakeland Regional Medical Center was able to decrease FTEs by 15.6; a $275,000 return on investment!]

 

 

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