The Temple University Hospital: Quality Improvement

Introduction

Although the organizational values promoted at TUH can be defined as sensible and patient-oriented, the lack of tools for implementing proper care and maintaining control over the well-being of inpatients creates a rather unsettling situation. The specified issues cause a rise in the length of stay, which entails additional issues such as hospital-acquired infections (HAI) and the development of comorbid issues.

Problem

Patients, nurses, and communities are the key stakeholders since the mismanagement of the specified concern will lead to lower recovery rates, an increase in public health issues, and a rise in workplace burnouts among nurses (Rabbani et al., 2015). Therefore, introducing communication technologies is essential for patients’ well-being.

Gap Analysis

Peer-reviewed articles constitute the majority of the sources, most of them rendering the issue of innovative technology being deployed to monitor changes in patients’ well-being. The specified sources make the foundation of the analysis. Additionally, the literature used for the paper includes information from TUH’s official site to support the key statements and prove the significance of the proposed change. Electronic health records (EHR) will also be analyzed in order to build a coherent argument and define the connection between the introduction of IT/ICT and the enhancement of patient education.

In order to analyze the problem in question, one will have to perform a case study in the hospital setting. By integrating the tools for qualitative and quantitative analysis, one will define the effects that IT/ICT has on the enhancement of collaboration and, consequently, patient education in the TUH settings. The information retrieved from the case study analysis will inform the further strategies for encouraging the acquisition of useful knowledge and skills by patients, as well as the development goes new competencies among nurses (Bjaalid, Laudal, & Mikkelsen, 2015). Furthermore, the adoption of IT/ICT tools in the target setting will prove the significance of a mutual conversation between a nurse and patient as the gateway to the successful education of the latter.

Workflow Analysis

The current workflow involving the management of patients’ needs and the promotion of their safety during biopsy and the management of lung nodules as value-added activities is quite basic, which is a major flaw. Nurses often lose a significant amount of time on determining the steps that should have been outlined in the existing guidelines. As a result, the quality of biopsy and management of lung nodules drops (Temple University, 2017). The specified step is a value-added step, which requires a solution.

Herein the key inefficiency occurs; the lack of preparedness combined with unclear instructions and the inability to communicate crucial information immediately reduces the effects of the existing framework for data management, leaving patients vulnerable. For the same reason, the quality of patient education suffers. The latter is also a value-added stage since it allows multiplying the efficacy of nursing care.

Proposed Solution

It is recommended to integrate IT and ICT tools into the process of data management within the TUH settings along with technology such as the transthoracic needle. Three data points will be measured, including patients’ pain perception, their education levels, and the quality of communication. The process of decision-making will be spurred by introducing IT and ICT tools that will inform nurses about the slightest changes in patients’ well-being, thus, defining the choice of further strategies. Possible issues with patient education are expected due to the lack of background knowledge among the target audiences. However, the described concern can be addressed by simplifying and visualizing data.

Framework and Change Management

Kotter’s 8-step model will be used to implement change. The specified design was selected due to the opportunity for institutionalizing change that it offers. Six Sigma as the Performance Improvement (PI) Model, in turn, will be deployed to ensure that nurses acquire crucial skills for tending to the needs of patients from diverse backgrounds (Eriksson, 2017). The role of leaders in introducing the Six Sigma framework will involve motivating nurses to accept the change and inspire them to improve their skills systematically. TUH seems to be ready for the introduction of change since the organization has transferred to a new mode of nurse-patient relationships that involves consistent communication. TUH’s key strengths include openness to innovations, strong, patient-oriented values, and numerous resources.

The current levels of readiness at TUH, however, could be improved. Due to low staffing levels and large volumes of work, nurses may be reluctant toward changes. In the specified scenario, the role of leaders will include motivating the TUH staff to accept new values and principles, thus, improving their performance and addressing patients’ needs more carefully. The reluctance of staff members and possible shortage of financial resources are the key barriers to change, yet, with a proper approach toward the allocation thereof, one will be able to introduce a positive change. With the levels of commitment being the key strength of TUH, a positive shift in the nurse-patient dynamics is expected. The communication plan will involve building awareness among staff members and creating the desire to change among them through the integration of motivational strategies and incentives. Offering knowledge about the method of changing and implementing it will be the next two steps, while the institutionalization of change will close the process.

Conclusion

Changing communication dynamics within a hospital by introducing IT and ICT tools is a challenging task, yet it can be accomplished with the promotion of the relevant values to staff members. By placing emphasis on health-related values and showing the opportunities that new knowledge provides, TUH managers will incite a positive shift in the hospital environment. Thus, the problem of increased length of stay, HAIs, and similar concerns will be resolved at TUH.

References

Eriksson, N. (2017). Hospital management from a high reliability organizational change perspective: A Swedish case on Lean and Six Sigma. International Journal of Public Sector Management, 30(1), 67-84. Web.

Bjaalid, G., Laudal, T., & Mikkelsen, A. (2015). Hairy goals in change management: The case of implementing ICT-supported task planning in a hospital setting. Journal of Change Management, 15(4), 274-307. Web.

Rabbani, F., Hashmani, F. N., Mukhi, A. A. A., Gul, X., Pradhan, N., Hatcher, P.,… Abbas, F. (2015). Hospital management training for the Eastern Mediterranean Region: time for a change? Journal of Health Organization and Management, 29(7), 965-972. Web.

Temple University. (2017). Temple University Hospital participating in new clinical trial evaluating novel device to access and biopsy lung nodules. Web.