Last week, Select Medical’s LTACH Division CNO Gloria Skinner and Maple Grove Hospital’s Director of Women’s and Children’s Services Linda Engdahl, shared proven approaches applied at each institution to foster teamwork from the frontlines to the leadership teams.
Here’s what they shared:
Patient Safety Huddles.
Select Medical LTACH nursing teams huddle at the start of every shift to discuss key safety factors, including admits and discharges, fall precautions, restraints and risk behaviors, c diff, high risk airways, and vent weans.
Why it works: Huddle leaders work to keep the huddles tight and focused, so that nurses get the information they need and get back to work. This requires holding to a 5 minutes maximum, and excluding a litany of ‘general announcements.’
Physician “Afternoon Rap.”
Select’s version of a multi-disciplinary round involves physicians, other care team members, the patient and family member (if available). Raps occur at the patient bedside twice a week for 5 minutes to review patient goals, medications, nursing interventions, and results of interventions.
Why it works:
Select leaders gave physicians flexibility to ease into this new demand on their time. Doing this has allowed physicians across their 108 hospitals to incorporate it into their workflow as appropriate, resulting in 71% of the hospitals adopting the program.
At Maple Grove Hospital, leaders of all departments meet for 30 minutes twice weekly to review crucial announcements, timely updates, and then conduct one-on-one or small group mini-huddles with fellow hospital leaders.
Why it works:
The leadership huddles save endless emails by getting decision makers together to have a dialogue in which the communication is clear and at the end of which agreement is reached. Meetings happen frequently enough that leaders save quick chats for the huddle, and meeting face-to-face helps drive accountability across the team.
Maple Grove leaders rotate around to all of the hospital departments to hear directly from frontline staff what’s working and what’s not. They collect feedback around specific issues and opportunities, and build swat teams to solve problems with direct input from staff on the best solutions.
Why it works:
The rotating schedule makes it so no department feels targeted or overwhelmed. Also, because different hospital leaders lead the huddles each week, staff members get exposed to all of the hospital leadership, creating more direct lines of communication and accountability.
Both of these organizations have seen great results from these team best practices. Select Medical’s LTACH division’s overall patient satisfaction scores are in the 90% percentile and their employee engagement scores have increased significantly from 2009-2012. What’s more, their CLABSI rates have also dropped – and they’ve sustained the drop, giving them clinical and experience reasons to continue their teamwork efforts. At Maple Grove, employee engagement scores were 14% above the hospital benchmark level in a recent Workplace Dynamics survey, and willingness to recommend the hospital tops 90% among patients.
These are just a taste of what’s possible when team members work together and the health system supports them in their work. What are your favorite team building approaches?