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Innovation and Operational Excellence at UPMC

At UPMC, we're proud of our Operational Excellence journey and its success stories. They simplify, streamline, and improve the daily experience of our clinical care teams, staff, and the people we care for.

Clinical Documentation Savings

Continuing to assess ways for frontline staff to spend more time in direct care is one of our highest priorities.

To that end, a clinical leadership team looks at all of the paperwork nurses do. They've found ways to cut down on unnecessary forms so nurses can spend more time caring for people.

In total, we eliminated 30 sections, giving nursing staff back more than 128,115 hours for bedside care.

Clinical Quality Capture

Our Clinical Quality Capture (CQC) team helps our doctors, nurse practitioners, and trainees write better records for the people in our care. They focus on noting each person's health level and the details of their illness using certain health terms.

The CQC's main goal is to make sure patient records reflect our high quality care. We teach and coach staff on how to write these records well. We use technology to check how our staff is doing and give quick feedback to help them do even better.

Ever since we started the CQC team, the way our care teams write records has changed a great deal. Their work is more efficient and clear, which helps our clinical staff communicate and interact with you better.

Discharge SWAT

We have special teams called Discharge SWAT (DSWAT), which include doctors and other care team members. They're now a routine part of what we do each day in our hospitals.

The job of the DSWAT team is to talk about, address, and solve any problems that might keep people from leaving the hospital. This helps people not stay in the hospital longer than needed and makes room for new people in need of care.

Discharge Plan Manager

We focus on giving top quality and safe care to people, especially when they move from inpatient to outpatient care.

A discharge plan manager helps you and your family during this change. They make sure you get the right help, organize resources, and keep everyone informed.

We give each person a score that tells us how likely they are to come back to the hospital. We keep this score updated. If the score shows that you might have to come back for a reason we can prevent, we take steps to help.

This could be home visits from a nurse, help from community resources, or using insurance programs. Our aim is to help you make this change smoothly, so you have a good outcome and don't need to return.

Learn more about clinical care coordination and discharge planning at UPMC.

Medical Review Council

We've set up a new group called the Medical Review Council. This robust team of health care and operations leaders is in charge of:

  • Approving health care policies and rules for staff.
  • The process of giving doctors special rights and recognition.

This team ensures all of our policies and procedures work well together and include everyone's needs across UPMC.

Pharmacy & Therapeutics Committee

The UPMC Pharmacy Service Line has started a new group called the Executive Pharmacy & Therapeutics Committee (P&T). This group includes people from all UPMC hospitals whose goal is to improve the way we handle medicines.

The P&T group also works to makes sure people are safe and that we're efficient and manage our finances responsibly. They do this by looking at both new and existing medicines and trying to standardize things.

The COVID-19 pandemic showed us that sometimes we face sudden shortages of drugs and other challenges we don't expect. So, it's vital that this P&T group can respond quickly. With this new approach, they can make faster decisions with advice from local experts and leaders.

This advancement will help us be more efficient, avoid doing the same things twice, and be responsible for our actions. Local leaders will keep an eye on trends, handle data, and make local processes better. They'll also get help and direction from the main executive team at UPMC.

We've made sure that this committee has the right people to offer their expertise and consider the needs of different regions.

Team-based Care Model

UPMC Nursing created a collaborative and innovative approach to care called Team-based Care. This model supports our nursing teams so that they have the resources they need to spend more time with patients and provide the care that patients deserve.

Staff can change this model to:

  • Meet the individual needs of each unit.
  • Enable staff to work to the top of their licensure.
  • Encourage a team approach to care delivery.
  • Introduce a new role of Patient Family Concierge to focus on assisting patients and families with non-clinical needs.

This new model of care has also created opportunities for career growth to support our staff.

Learn more about the Team-based Care Model.