Significant and Sustainable Change Through Design Thinking

Industry
Healthcare
Company
Large metro area hospital system
Timeline
6-month engagement

The Business Challenge

A large hospital system had a goal of becoming the safest hospital in America as measured by a set of key quality metrics after receiving significant penalties from CMS.

A Human-Centered Approach

Hospital executives recognized an opportunity to use design thinking to create a different approach and new outcomes for patients and employees. Aveus partnered with the Care Transformation Team to conduct an initial meta-analysis of existing processes and data for seven hospital-acquired infections to identify problem areas and gaps in data and insights. Next, we completed empathy-based observational research in multiple areas of the hospital (ICU, ED, medical surgery units, cardiac units, and more) shadowing a variety of roles across all hospital shifts. This research led to new insights that were developed into design challenges for cross-functional teams to solve for: staff capacity, a team approach to care, and internal workflows.

Developing New Skills

Aveus collaboratively led design thinking workshops with hospital leaders to first teach the methodology and then apply the process to the specific design challenges for the organization. The Aveus team created a change management playbook to ensure that teams were successful in implementation. Throughout the process, leadership sessions were facilitated with executive sponsors to align the work with business needs. Finally, Aveus coached the team through charter creations and deployment of prototype testing in selected hospital units.

The results?

The initial pilot program achieved a 5% increase in nursing productivity and double-digit improvements in key safety metrics. Less than two years after implementing prototypes, the hospital reversed a trend of $1M+ in annual penalties from the “Hospital Acquired Conditions” metric within the CMS Pay-for-Performance Program.

Scalable Results

In addition to the increase in nursing productivity and eliminating CMS penalties, the hospital quality team was asked to present their success story at the ICSI conference the following year. The methodology and approach continue to be expanded to other hospitals in the care system to solve tough challenges in a human-centered way.

Engagement Timeline (6 Months)

The Aveus team was extremely focused at understanding our needs and developing a custom plan to approach the challenge that fit our culture, timeline and resources. We were able to launch multiple prototypes that we believe will have a significant impact, and we learned new skills to apply to future projects.

Director of Quality and Performance Improvement

Large metro area hospital system
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