Case Study: Enhancing Revenue and Improving Patient Flow for an AMC

An academic medical center with more than 400 beds partnered with Huron to improve clinical operations and enhance revenue. Huron solutions improved patient flow, generated significant cost savings and revenue enhancements, and enriched collaboration and transparency across the client’s organization.

Challenge

A large, highly ranked academic medical center was experiencing a drop in inpatient volumes and an increase in operating losses. In addition, the organization’s leaders and physicians were launching an internal process improvement project and needed to prepare by optimizing clinical operations.

Approach

Huron implemented its comprehensive Care Transformation solutions with a goal of securing $35 million in margin improvement. The engagement generated significant cost savings and revenue enhancements through performance improvement initiatives across multiple facilities and a physician organization.

Streamlining patient flow

Huron redesigned the organization’s patient placement model by forming a Patient Flow Management Center and enhancing staff roles and responsibilities. Working with clinical staff, Huron enhanced the use of electronic medical records and case management systems, and the development of an electronic bed board.

Huron also redesigned and expanded the client’s interdisciplinary rounds across adult and pediatric medical/ surgical floors, and critical care units. A physician advisor program was expanded to include on-site coverage.

Developing clinical documentation processes

Huron developed and implemented clinical documentation improvement (CDI) processes and strengthened clinical knowledge among staff. The engagement improved compliance and the CDI team continues to hold frequent physician education sessions.

Improving care coordination

The project laid the groundwork for better patient outcomes. New processes such as regular clinical high-risk meetings allowed physicians and other providers to collaborate on the development of a plan for patients with extended lengths of stay (LOS). The engagement resulted in more than 4,000 patient days saved among patients with a LOS greater than two days, generating nearly $5 million in annualized cost savings.

Clarifying staff roles

Huron redefined the roles and responsibilities of case management and social work within the organization. Comprehensive staff education helped support proactive LOS management, standardize processes and build clinical knowledge. A new productivity tracker that included payroll validation and department volume data, a VP variance report and productivity scorecards was developed. The client’s budget team received additional training to help maintain momentum and drive sustainable results.

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