How to Ensure Accountability in the OR

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Accountability in operating room block utilization is critical to an organization’s ability to optimize throughput, minimize cost, and provide the best care.  Without accountability, it’s nearly impossible to allocate block time equitably; often time is given to those with the loudest voices rather than those with the best performance.

Historically, accurate, accessible data regarding block and room utilization has been extremely challenging to come by.  While some healthcare organizations have a few capable analysts who churn out reports, the information is often “stale” by the time it’s reviewed, making it less actionable and more vulnerable to objections (for example, block-holders who want to protect their existing time or lobby for additional time).  Without timely, accurate data, it’s nearly impossible to establish and maintain a culture of accountability with regard to block utilization.

What hospitals need to ensure accountability is a platform that provides shared, accessible, timely, accurate, and “drillable” information. 

Shared: All stakeholders have access to the same data, creating a common point of reference. In the past, performance metrics were calculated inconsistently by different analysts in different departments, giving credence to objections and thereby undermining accountability.

Accessible: Users can access and interact with dynamic views of the data in a user-friendly interface, instead of piecing together information from multiple, less user-friendly systems or waiting in line for overworked IT departments to extract data.

Timely: Data is updated daily or weekly rather than monthly or quarterly, making it easy to verify or counter objections based on timeliness of the data.

Accurate: Set-up always involves a process of validation and vetting compared to existing data/metrics.  During this process we often uncover data issues and/or inconsistent rules for calculating performance metrics; these discoveries often help to improve data quality and establish fair and consistent performance policies

Drillable: Users can drill into utilization and surgical activity at any desired level of granularity, including service, surgeon, block, and individual cases.  This bolsters confidence and makes it easy to verify or counter objections related to the accuracy of the underlying data.

Accountability in perioperative performance empowers an organization to achieve results that are great for the bottom line, as well as patients and staff.  Hospital IQ’s solutions offer an accurate and verifiable view of OR performance, helping organizations create a framework of accountability and achieve superior results.