What's In My Bag with William T. Pennington, MD
Q. How has the implementation of SynergyHD3 impacted your practice?
A. Our hospital, the Midwest Orthopedic Specialty Hospital (MOSH), is a joint venture with 50/50 ownership between a physician investment group and Wheaton Franciscan Health Care. When creating our hospital, it was our mission to put the patient first and develop all of our care pathways with the thought of delivering the highest quality, state-of-the-art orthopaedic care to our patients that would ultimately lead to superior clinical results and patient satisfaction. Implementing the most current surgical methods, as well as remaining on the cusp of all developing technology, has certainly assisted us in our efforts to become a center of excellence in orthopaedic care. Our efforts focusing on quality delivery of patient care has been acknowledged by being awarded the prestigious Press Ganey Inpatient Summit Award in 2012. Since the implementation of SynergyHD3 with the Physician App into our arthroscopic program, our Press Ganey outcome scores measuring patient satisfaction have improved 7% in mean score and 193% in percentile ranking. These measurements are representative of patients who have been queried about the information that was communicated to them regarding their surgery vs. our “pre-SynergyHD3” benchmarking scores. We have also recently begun utilizing SynergyHD3 with the Physician App in our open procedures, as well with the same enthusiastic response from patients regarding their satisfaction with being informed as to what occurred in their surgical procedures.
Q. MOSH no longer prints hard copy images following the procedure. Has the decision to move to digital images been a positive transition? What has been the reaction from your patients?
A. The aspect of not having to print images is something that we, and our patients, have embraced. Images immediately exported to our hospital EMR, the practicing physician’s EMR and to the patient via HIPAA secure methods has significantly improved our efficiency, while also decreasing the cost to our hospital and practices incurred from paper and ink purchases. In addition, personnel time and cost is no longer being required to scan images into the patient’s record. Patients also have responded quite favorably to the immediate availability of their annotated surgical images.
Q. When utilizing the patient app, what features have you and your partners found most valuable?
A. We have utilized the app to not only provide patients with postoperative annotated images, but also have included links to postoperative instruction sheets pertaining to their particular procedure, YouTube videos of our therapists teaching them immediate exercises and educational technique videos through the OrthoIllustrated.com site. Again, these features have provided great satisfaction to our patients and helped their ability to navigate the peri-operative period with less stress.
Dan Mattes, CEO Wheaton Franciscan and MOSH
Q. What has the impact of SynergyHD3 been at MOSH?:
A. While developing our program at MOSH, we have set up a structure in which we evaluate all of our outcome scores of patient satisfaction diligently and proactively and react to deficiencies in our care delivery as reported by our patients. As stated previously, we were not performing to our standards on our postoperative surveys when it came to patients feeling that they were adequately informed as to what was done to them in the operating room. Since implementing SynergyHD3, we have noticed that our Press Ganey patient-satisfaction scores pertaining to these measures have improved drastically. Since the passage of the Affordable Health Care Act, patient reimbursement will be correlated with patient satisfaction. As an administrator, I feel the SynergyHD3 investment has been quite valuable and will have an unlimited ceiling as we increase its implementation to more of our open procedures as well. Another aspect of the improved postoperative education that we are able to provide through our SynergyHD3 reports is our ability to hopefully curb hospital re-admissions by the inclusion of all of the postoperative educational links.
Q. Arthrex recently released an open surgical video platform. Can you share some feedback on this cutting-edge technology?
A. We have recently begun utilizing the SynergyHD3 platform during open procedures (ie: Total Shoulder Arthroplasty). From a patient educational standpoint, it has been quite a success as we have been able to generate similar reports including images and video documenting preoperative motion, post-implantation motion and selected still photos and video clips for the patients. This gives the patient a better understanding as to what was done. We have also been able to include similar educational links to the patient reports, including YouTube videos of our therapists demonstrating home therapy programs and postoperative instruction sheets, with hopes of curbing hospital re-admissions and achieving a higher level of patient satisfaction. Prior to incorporating SynergyHD3, the anesthesiologists were not typically able to see deep into the surgical field, during a glenoid exposure, for example. Our anesthesiologists appreciate being able to directly view the surgical field, which allows them to respond to our needs in a proactive manner.
We regret to inform our readers of the untimely passing of Dan Mattes, president of Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare central market and Scope This Out contributor. Our sincere condolences are extended to Dan’s family, Dr. William Pennington and the entire Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare community.