Sharma says having an enforced, communicated set of protocols is the key to success, but even with that there is no single set that will work for every cath lab team.
"I'm not saying that people should duplicate what we have, but clearly there should be a set protocol," Sharma says. "In this field, there is more than one right way to do things. At the same time, by and large, the concept has to be that when the variation occurs, that's where the trouble occurs."
Mount Sinai's protocols themselves are open for new evidence and team input, whether by a senior staff interventionalist or another clinician.
"Many times one of the voluntary physicians makes some good suggestions, so we will change our protocol based on incorporating their opinion," Sharma says. That sense of full teamwork extends to any communication following complications, he adds. "If an issue occurs, we discuss it openly. That is a key—that open communication. If you have a closed-door discussion with one or two people, then other people on the team don't know. On any major complications, we speak the next morning. Then monthly we have a one-hour discussion to review."
Learn more about the 10 steps to cath lab growth. Download a FREE copy of the HealthLeaders Media Rounds case study, Excellence in Cardiac Care: Elements of Success from the Mount Sinai Medical Center.
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