HealthLeaders Media Council members discuss their organizations' experience with process redesign efforts.
This article first appeared in the December 2016 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.
Emilio Vazquez, MD
Chief Medical Officer
Process redesign has encompassed many different things at DeKalb Health. One aspect we are looking at in particular is our charge-capture process, which we hadn't really examined in a number of years.
We aren't only looking to see that the charges are correct, but we're examining the way we capture charges, especially on the floor. We're making it easier for nurses to scan in supplies as they are used for patient care, and for materials management to figure out where stuff has gone. That is all in process now, so I can't say for sure whether we've received any benefit from it at this point—it's something we've just started.
Another area we're redesigning is our admissions process, especially for patients who don't have coverage. We've involved a company that works with individuals who come into the hospital without insurance. They work with these patients to help them apply for health insurance or grants. It's not-for-profit, and it helped us find a way to get those applications for coverage in through someone outside the hospital. This helped us to recover $90,000 in payments through these patients that we otherwise would not have received. For a hospital of our size, that is not a drop in the bucket.
Lena J. Weiner is an associate editor at HealthLeaders Media.