Virtual Discharge Assistant Cuts Readmissions, Costs
Now that patient satisfaction and patient experience are set to be tied to reimbursement, nurse leaders are looking for innovative solutions to improve these scores without adding tasks to already overworked staff.
One technological innovation that may become more common is the virtual discharge assistant. (Yes, companies may term these robots "discharge nurses," but as I wrote last week, using the term to refer to anything other than a member of the profession of nursing does a disservice to the profession.)
A virtual discharge advocate, named Louise has proven so successful in a pilot program at Boston Medical Center that 74% of patients in the study preferred to receive information from Louise rather than from a nurse or a physician.
The program is funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to improve the patient discharge process. The Project Re-Engineered Hospital Discharge (Project RED) found that a thorough and well-implemented discharge plan can reduce readmissions by 30% and decrease costs per patient by $412.
Boston University Medical Center researchers identified the most common problems with discharge and made improving the problem areas the focus of Project RED. The researchers then identified 750 patients at Boston Medical Center and split them into two groups. One group received standard care. The other group received care based on the Project RED principles.
- CMS Sets 2014 Pay Rates for Hospital Outpatient and Physician Services
- FDA hopes hospitals will switch to newly regulated pharmacies
- The 5 Biggest Healthcare Finance Trouble Spots
- Not-for-Profit Hospitals Find Opportunity Amid Uncertainty
- Nonprofit Hospital Outlook 'Negative' in 2014
- The Most Polarizing Topics in Healthcare IT
- How CPOE Will Make Healthcare Smarter
- Are ACOs Really Different from HMOs?
- Why You Should Involve Patients in Nursing Handoffs
- Rise of the Chief Strategy Officer