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Length Of Stay is an odd reimbursement metric.
It basically ignores the fact that each individual presumably heals at a different rate, and instead relies on the law of averages.
With reimbursement regulations like LOS due to stiffen, hospitals are scrambling to find better ways to comply. One way is to look at the many activities surrounding healing to determine if they can be done in less time.
Part of her job was to pull as much wasted time out of the patient flow process as was humanly possible. To do that, she relied heavily on TeleTracking’s capacity management technology.
Maria, an RN with more than 20 years of experience, did quite well at that job, too. In fact, within a year, she and her team increased patient transfers from outside and inside the hospital by a stunning 450 percent. They also reduced ED wait time for an assigned bed from seven hours to less than 90 minutes.
Now, Maria is a TeleTracking product specialist with a focus on how our technology can shorten length of stay to comply with DRGs.
I had the opportunity to speak with her about her experiences. I share with you here some of her observations about nurses and LOS.
Nurses can have a huge impact on LOS by using available technology and being a better advocate for the patient, Maria believes.
Implementing these changes can be a culture shock, which Maria also knows a great deal about.
“At St. Peter’s, the bed meeting was the golden cow, but we didn’t need it anymore with a patient flow automation system. It was wasted time. So with TeleTracking providing best practice standards, I was able to discontinue it.”
“People came around to understanding why were doing things differently,” she says. “Once they truly understood that what I was doing was something good for our patients, they stopped avoiding me for coffee!”
Thank you, Maria!
What has been your experience managing length of stay? What role have nurses played?