Eliminating Overhead Physician Pages Results in Higher Productivity and Happier Staff
Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital
Advocate Health Care
Downers Grove, IL
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Reducing noise in a hospital can have a positive effect on staff productivity and patient satisfaction, which are key components of HCAHPS scores. In truth, all kinds of noise can come from the normal, daily activities that transpire in a hospital. Overhead paging, alarms, phones ringing, doors opening and closing, conversations in the hallway—all contribute to ambient noise.
Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove, Illinois, was looking for a new technology-based communication solution that would facilitate a quiet, restful, and healing environment for its patients. At the 333-bed hospital, which has more than 1,000 physicians representing 63 specialties, the volume of overhead pages for physicians was very high. In one month alone, the hospital tracked 609 overhead physician pages.
“We were doing about 30-40 overheads a week. Any time a doctor would walk away from a unit, they would call us to overhead page them.”Mancill Stewart
Communication Lead, Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital
Before PerfectServe was implemented, nurses and other care team members who wanted to page a physician would call the switchboard to request a page, the request would wait in a queue, and then the switchboard would initiate the page. This is the way overhead paging had been done at Good Samaritan for almost 30 years.
During the implementation of PerfectServe, the communications team created a reminder system for any overhead physician page requests. If someone called the switchboard to request a page, the switchboard team would remind that person to use PerfectServe instead. This way, the care team member can communicate with the physician directly, and their request doesn’t have to wait in a queue.
The uptake in usage of PerfectServe was almost immediate. In just a few weeks, the switchboard was down to one or two physician page requests.
After nearly 30 years using the former paging process, Mancill noted that the quick process change was particularly impressive. “To take that culture and turn it around in the time frame we did was amazing,” he said. “PerfectServe really had a great plan in place prior to launch. They did a great job working with physicians. Now physicians don’t want to be contacted any other way than through PerfectServe.”
Good Samaritan Hospital saw a 99 percent decrease in overhead physician pages.
In addition to the reduction in noise from overhead paging, Good Samaritan noticed some other benefits:
- The switchboard call queue decreased dramatically, which enabled the team to answer calls from patients and their families faster.
- Nurses and other care team members took pride in learning the new system and even in teaching others how to use it.