SCAN
NCH
October 2012

New: Patient Status Warning in CareLink Orders

A Patient Status Warning has been added to CareLink Orders. This new warning helps capture the mandatory admission order in a timely fashion. Incorrect patient status assignment or deficient documentation can result in increased cost to the patient and/or decreased reimbursement to the Hospital.

Please review important aspects of the Patient Status Warning:

  • A status order must be placed for all new patients.
  • If the patient does not have an active patient status order, a warning will trigger for anyone entering orders on that patient until a status order has been entered. Therefore, physicians may be contacted by a nurse to provide a patient status telephone order.
  • For direct admit patients not going through the DAU, a patient status order will be obtained by the Admissions/Patient Flow Coordinator. These orders are valid for six hours. If the status order has expired, a nurse will contact the physician to obtain an updated status order. To learn more about the direct admit patient status order process, read the article titled Important Direct Admit changes.
  • Staff nurses are unable to accept a patient status order from a mid-level provider (e.g., NP, PA). Regulatory requirements mandate a physician who has admitting privileges determine a patient's status/level of care needed.
  • Reminder about patient status definitions:
    • Inpatient Status: A patient has met clinical criteria and will be admitted to a bed for the purpose of receiving acute inpatient hospital services.
    • Observation Status: A physician ordered Hospital outpatient services to allow for testing and medical evaluation of a condition. Within the first 24 – 48 hours of a stay, the physician will determine if the patient requires an inpatient stay or may be discharged to another care setting or home.
    • Outpatient Status: A patient who is receiving outpatient services at the Hospital may require a hospital bed temporarily during the course of service. While this patient may have an overnight stay, typically the patient would be in the hospital less than 24 hours. For example, a lap-chole patient who is placed on an inpatient unit for extended recovery typically would have a shorter hospital stay.