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The Catalyst

MUSC Medical Center Communications Corner

Why these goals?


HCAHPS and CG CAHPS (Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems)
1. The patient’s experience is an important factor in the quality of care, recovery and MUSC’s reputation.

2. MUSC utilizes CAHPS surveys when possible: (a) these are standardized surveys that are being used across the U.S., (b) the results are reported online, and (c) MUSC can compare performance with other area providers and other academic medical centers.

3. These surveys: (a) are required by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid services, (b) impact the amount MUSC is paid for its services.

Medical Center Communications Corner


Employee commitment, physician engagement
How employees and physicians feel about the work they do and where they work is important. High levels of commitment and engagement are associated with: higher patient, family satisfaction; lower errors, accidents; better patient outcomes; lower absenteeism; lower turnover; and higher profitability.


Ideal care, hand hygiene
Proper hand hygiene is the most important thing MUSC employees can do to prevent health care associated infections.
The ideal care composites include:

Mortality: a global indicator of the quality and safety of the care provided; a measure of whether patients live more often, about the same, or less often than would be expected given how serious their illness.

Care process measures: how consistently MUSC provides certain elements of care that have been demonstrated to lead to the best patient outcomes.

Readmissions: Measures how often patients come back into the hospital within 30 days of being  discharged; a global measure of the effectiveness of (a) the care delivered while in the hospital, (b) the preparation of the patient (and their caregivers) to take care of themselves at home, and (c) the post-discharge follow up plan prepared with the patient; readmission rates for some diseases are publically reported and impact the amount paid for its services.

Health care acquired infections: central venous line infections, catheter associated urinary tract infections and ventilator associated infections are serious, usually avoidable, complications that increase patient pain and discomfort, increase mortality and extend hospital stays; patients do not deserve to experience illnesses they did not have before coming to MUSC; rates of health care acquired infections are reported and impact the amount MUSC is paid for its services.

Cultural of safety: in order to provide the best care, MUSC must create an environment that supports attention to safety for patients and employees (a) measured with a clinical employee survey, (b) assesses employee perceptions of importance of quality and safety within the organization, and (c) provides information about the strength of key safety processes.

Outpatient electronic medical record meaningful use: greater use of technology is vital to improving the quality of care; health care is being guided through time to use electronic patient information by increasing expectations for information collection, documentation and reporting; at this time compliance rates with capture and reporting of certain data elements are used to determine potential for increased payments.

MUSC Medical Center Communications Corner


Cost, margin
Cost per discharge: an important measure to assure that costs for providing care are not more than MUSC is paid for that care; payments will decrease during the coming years; it is important that MUSC reduces the costs before payments are reduced.

Margin: what is left from payments after MUSC has paid for its costs; it is important to have a margin left so that funds are available for purchasing new equipment, maintaining the facilities and maintaining competitive pay rates.


Inpatient discharges, new patients visits
In support of our mission, MUSC wants to provide services to an increasing number of citizens; improve the process for admitting, treating and discharging patients so that MUSC makes the best use of its capacity to serve patients; and the outpatient focus is on new patients to support the intent to offer patients an opportunity to benefit from MUSC services who may not have done so before.

June 26, 2013

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