Delivering Better Care Through Workforce Transformation

Increased Productivity and Decreased Length of Stay Build Capacity at The Christ Hospital Health Network

The Christ Hospital Health Network worked with Huron to standardize its workforce management techniques across several departments and improve patient throughput processes to deliver coordinated and efficient care.

Challenge

Although The Christ Hospital Health Network is one of the key providers in its region, the organization recognized opportunities to enhance operational efficiency across the organization. The organization’s average length-of-stay time was above national benchmarks, creating inefficiencies in patient throughput and straining the organization’s capacity.

Additionally, the organization saw an opportunity to optimize the utilization of its labor resources to ensure labor expenses were balanced with the organization’s needs. Labor expense management challenges worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic while the organization’s departments and services were not operating at total capacity.

Approach

Leaders from The Christ Hospital Health Network worked with Huron to launch a systemwide initiative to enhance operational efficiency. Rather than focusing solely on benchmarking and analytics, the organization relied on Huron’s deep industry expertise in operations and workforce transformation to achieve its labor and operational improvement goals.

The teams focused on two specific areas: workforce management and patient throughput. As the length of stay decreased, the organization ensured that its workforce was appropriately aligned. When working in tandem, these two focus areas enabled care optimization, which allowed The Christ Hospital Health Network to achieve the following:

Increased workforce productivity. The Christ Hospital Health Network and Huron collaborated to improve workforce management practices and implement rigorous, industry-leading processes to set productivity targets and align resources to demand, ensuring its labor expenses were balanced with organizational needs.

Huron helped the organization implement a shift management tool that provided a single, data-driven platform to track their staffing and match clinicians to patient ratios while accounting for factors such as high acuity needs, discharges, and admissions. This work has led to more efficient staffing and increased capacity and set the foundation for sustainable growth.

To sustain process changes, the team collaborated with staff members to obtain their buy-in throughout implementation and ensure processes were designed to enhance efficiency.

Decreased average length of stay (LOS) and improved patient throughput. Together, The Christ Hospital Health Network and Huron implemented new processes that improved coordination across care teams, reducing the unnecessary time patients spent in the hospital. By introducing daily, unit-based interdisciplinary rounds (IDRs), the team enhanced care delivery and discharge planning by proactively addressing each patient’s needs.

To ensure the efficiency of IDRs, the hospital regionalized patients by provider so the care team could efficiently complete rounds, play a more proactive role in unit-based activities, and foster a team-based culture.

These sustainable efforts enhanced visibility and communication across the care team, improving patient throughput and reducing the overall length of stay.

The Christ Hospital Health Network is the top-ranked hospital in the Cincinnati region, and for 21 straight years, it has been named the “most preferred hospital” in the community. With its main hospital campus and various outpatient centers and physician practices across the region, The Christ Hospital Health Network is a core healthcare provider to the greater Cincinnati community.

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