Hayes Green Beach Memorial Hospital president and CEO Matt Rush will tell you that his organization does not aspire to win awards. Part of a key strategy at HGB, however, is to be an organization of distinction.
“We value relentless improvement,” Rush said. “This new strategy is going to drive us to be that much better.”
The strategy has already proven its worth as HGB was recently named a 2015 HEALTHSTRONG Hospital by iVantage Health Analytics. HGB also received the Patient Safety Excellence Award, bestowed upon hospitals rated in the top 10 percent in the nation for patient safety by Healthgrades. In addition, several HGB surgeons and physicians received 5-star Excellence in Healthcare Engagement Awards by Professional Research Consultants.
“These awards came at a time where we’re reenergizing our organization to take it to the next level, because the world around us is demanding it,” Rush said. “It’s really energized our place for the continued journey to be the best we can be.”
HGB was one of just three Critical Access Hospitals in Michigan and one of 527 nationally to receive a 2015 HEALTHSTRONG Hospital distinction. iVantage Health Analytics evaluates hospitals according to a performance scorecard based on 56 metrics, including quality, outcomes, patient perspective, affordability and efficiency.
The Patient Safety Excellence Award is based on 14 standard patient safety indicators as recognizes hospitals for how well they prevent infections, medical errors and other complications.
Rush said the hospital’s performance starts with its community-based board of directors, which sets goals and expectations for the hospital. The medical staff in turn defines the standards, including the key areas of “hand offs,” (when a patient travels through one part of the care system to another) and preventable events.
“We have teams that look at all of the different types of events that can occur,” said Wanda Bartholomew, director of quality and outcomes at HGB. “What we find is one of the riskiest parts of taking care of patients is that actual hand off.”
Bartholomew said all HGB staff utilize a Situation Background Assessment and Recommendation (SBAR) protocol when dealing with patient hand offs.
“It’s a very succinct way of giving information from one caregiver to another, from a caregiver to a physician, so you’re not expounding on a lot of things that don’t need to be said, but rather keeping things very concise,” Bartholomew said. “It’s about communication. It happens with every exchange of a patient within the organization.”
Bartholomew said their team looks at preventable events on a routine basis. Part of ensuring proper care is administered at all times is providing spot checks and audits, Bartholomew said. Staff is also tested twice a year on a range of competencies.
“Another thing that is important to note is that the culture of the organization continues to change as well, in a positive way,” Rush said. “We actually ask people to speak out and report those things that may not be good for a patient. It’s called a culture of safety.”
Patrick Salow, executive vice president of physician services and compliance, said many of the steps involved in proper care are engrained in all caregivers.
“We’re still every day aspiring to be on the lookout for that next event,” Rush said. “You find that with caregivers and healthcare folks, they are never satisfied where they are. One incident is too many. We have a lot of pride in our team and the systems and procedures we’ve put in place.”