Improved Patient Discharge Process Recognized as Innovation of the Year
The “Path to Home” patient discharge improvement process at Nemours Children’s Hospital (NCH) was honored by the Florida Hospital Association (FHA) with The Innovation of the Year in Patient Care award during the Celebration of Achievement in Quality and Service ceremony in Orlando.
The process – developed by a cross-functional process improvement team at Nemours in response to an increasing number of overstay days – is used as a means for ensuring patients and their families are better prepared for discharge as soon as they are clinically ready. The “Path to Home” patient flow is based on the following process improvements: working with nurses to modify the questions asked of families to better identify a patient’s barriers to discharge; integrating responses into a patient’s health records to be available in real time; and implementing daily rounding with the patient’s entire interdisciplinary team so discharge planning stays top-of-mind.
“Nemours Children’s Hospital has a steadfast commitment to family-centered care, and part of that care is getting them back home as soon as they are ready,” stated Monica Nebel, nurse manager in the NCH medical-surgical unit. “When we started looking at the barriers to discharge, we noticed that many of them – such as adequate planning for transportation or home healthcare needs – represented delays that were actually under our control.”
Helping families plan ahead and understanding their needs well in advance of discharge allows the team to anticipate barriers and reduce the amount of extra time children stay in the hospital.
“Keeping a patient here longer than they need to be here not only disrupts the lives of a patient and their family, but also occupies a bed when another patient needs us,” stated Kellie Olmstead, Operational Vice President, Continuous Improvement. “We are honored to receive this distinction from the Florida Hospital Association. This recognition among our peers is encouraging, and we hope this process improvement helps others in the industry.”
This is the sixth time the FHA has honored Nemours Children’s Hospital with an Innovation of the Year award and the seventh year the FHA honored the hospital. The hospital opened its doors just seven years ago on October 22, 2012. The awards ceremony was held during the FHA’s annual meeting on October 24 at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress in Orlando.
About Nemours Children’s Health System
Nemours is an internationally recognized children's health system that owns and operates the Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del., and Nemours Children's Hospital in Orlando, Fla., along with outpatient facilities in six states, delivering pediatric primary, specialty and urgent care. Nemours also powers the world’s most-visited website for information on the health of children and teens, KidsHealth.org and offers on-demand, online video patient visits through Nemours CareConnect. Established as The Nemours Foundation through the legacy and philanthropy of Alfred I. duPont, Nemours provides pediatric clinical care, research, education, advocacy, and prevention programs to families in the communities it serves. For more information, visit https://www.nemours.org.