In June 2010, Northwest Community Hospital became one of the first hospitals in the U.S. to implement the Universal Bed Care Delivery Model in patients undergoing cardiac surgery. This model involves keeping postoperative patients in one care area throughout their hospital stay. According to Ali Shariartzadeh, MD, chief of Cardiovascular Surgery, this Model is meeting its goals, which include improving patient safety and satisfaction, and reducing postoperative length of stay.
Dr. Shariartzadeh notes that planning for this implementation was accomplished by the Surgical Heart Unit Process Improvement Team. “Their efforts were thorough, and included soliciting input from the Cardiac Surveillance Unit, educating staff, updating patient education materials, reviewing and updating order sets and protocols, and evaluating the physical environment to accommodate ambulatory patients,” he says. “They worked hard, and their efforts have been productive. We are delighted to report that, less than one year later, the results are positive and very encouraging.”
Approximately 200 cardiac surgery patients have been cared for through the Universal Bed Care Delivery Model. Preliminary data suggests an improvement in LOS, with a 14% decrease over a four-month period noted in the interval from surgery to discharge and a 9% reduction in LOS in the interval from admission to discharge.
Patient satisfaction has improved, too. According to Leslie Collins, APN-CNS, Cardiac Surgery, a survey was developed to ascertain patient opinion and identify areas for improvement, 96.8% of patients responded that they were in favor of the Universal Bed Care Delivery Model concept. Patients said they felt safe and comfortable because they developed relationships with the nurses who cared for them and preferred staying in one place. One specific area for improvement was related to the noise level on the unit.
“Our Surgical Heart Unit Process Improvement Team is developing a plan of action to address this concern, so that we can support a healing environment that promotes optimal recovery,” Collins says. “We are very encouraged by the results of our first year, which show we are providing excellent care.”