Eliminating physician pages results in higher productivity, happier staff

physician pages success story

Reducing noise in a hospital can have a positive effect on staff productivity and on patient satisfaction, a key component of HCAHPS scores. All kinds of noise can come from the normal, daily activity in a hospital. Overhead paging, alarms, phones ringing, doors opening and closing, conversations in the hallway — all contribute to noise.

Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove, Illinois, was looking for a new technology-based communications solution that would provide a quiet, restful and healing environment for its patients. At the 333-bed hospital, with 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.

Mancill Stewart, communication lead at Good Samaritan, says, “We were doing about 30-40 overheads a week… Anytime a doctor would walk away from a unit, they would call us to overhead page them.”

Solution to the problem

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 Hospital 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 could 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 says, “To take that culture and turn it around in the time frame we did was amazing.

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.”

Results

Good Samaritan Hospital saw a 99 percent decrease in overhead physician pages. Mancill reports, “[PerfectServe] has almost eliminated the amount of overheads we do on a general basis… So, now with PerfectServe, it has dramatically reduced the amount of overhead noise in the hospital.”

In addition to the reduction in noise from overhead paging, Good Samaritan Hospital 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.

About Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital

Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital is committed to providing clinically excellent, compassionate care. Through strong partnerships with outstanding physicians and nursing staffs, they are improving the health of residents in their communities and meeting the highest standards for patient care.

Over its nearly 40-year history, Good Samaritan Hospital has evolved into a recognized national leader in healthcare. The hospital was named by Truven Health Analytics in 2015 to the 100 Top Hospitals list, for the sixth time. It also is the only healthcare organization in the state to earn the prestigious Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, achieving the honor in 2010.

Good Samaritan Hospital features DuPage County’s only Level I trauma center, a certified Level III neonatal intensive care unit and Magnet® recognition for nursing excellence. A range of services are offered at the hospital, including cardiology, orthopedic surgery, general surgery, gastroenterology, stroke care, obstetrics and gynecology, low-dose diagnostic imaging and a comprehensive breast center. Good Samaritan Hospital is part of Advocate Health Care.

About PerfectServe

PerfectServe provides healthcare’s only comprehensive and secure communication and collaboration platform. The company’s flagship solution, PerfectServe, unites physicians, nurses and other care team members across the continuum and facilitates timely interaction among them.

PerfectServe automatically identifies and provides immediate access to the right care team member, enabling effective population health management through communication-driven workflows. More than 100,000 clinicians in organizations such as Advocate Healthcare, Ascension Health, Covenant Medical Group, Hoag, MemorialCare Health System, Orlando Health, St. Joseph Health and WellStar Health System rely on PerfectServe to help them speed time to treatment, promote physician alignment, enhance the consult process, increase transition efficiency, provide nurses more time for direct patient care and reduce HIPAA compliance risk.

Headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, PerfectServe has been serving the needs of forward-looking healthcare provider organizations since 2000.

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