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Growing Cost Pressures, Economic Downturn Prompting Hospitals to Improve Patient Throughput and Staff Productivity by Better Predicting and Managing Patient Demand

AtStaff, Inc., announces today that a growing number of its hospital customers ---24 to date --- are selecting the company’s ClairVia demand management solution to streamline patient throughput and increase staff productivity by better predicting patient demand and requirements.

AtStaff’s ClairVia® Demand Manager software leverages patient tracking technology (via HL7 integration with ADT, clinical information and patient acuity systems) to monitor and predict each patient’s condition and movement through each phase and location of care. Because each patient is assigned, at admission, a progress pattern that projects staffing requirements that spans days in the future, managers may prepare and accurately schedule the most qualified and cost effective employees days in advance.

“The current economic pressures are placing increased pressure on today’s healthcare organizations to carefully manage costs while ensuring that their patients receive high-quality care in a safe environment,” says Beth Pickard, President and CEO at AtStaff, Inc., a leader in patient and staff management systems. “Managing operational and clinical performance can no longer be a retrospective exercise. To improve results and maintain competitiveness, organizations require advanced tools to anticipate patient clinical progress and needs in order to achieve positive clinical outcomes and reduce length of stay.”

Central Washington Hospital, a major not-for-profit medical facility in Wenatchee, Wash., and Midland Memorial Hospital, a not-for-profit hospital in Midland, Texas, are two of among 24 total AtStaff hospital customers who have selected the ClairVia Demand Manager module. They report that ClairVia Demand Manager helps them improve clinical and financial results while delivering better overall service to patients.

Anticipating patient volume, movement and requirements are essential for Central Washington Hospital to improve patient throughput

”The Demand Manager software allows us to predict and track our patient admissions, transfers and discharges, which really helps move our patients more efficiently through our entire organization,” says Tracey Kasnic, RN, BSN, MBA Vice President of Patient Care Services at Central Washington Hospital. “Instead of being reactive, we are able to use Demand Manager to pinpoint exactly where our patient flow is coming from, and prepare our staff, ahead of time, to deal with those admissions, transfers and discharges that require dedicated RN expertise and time.”

ClairVia Demand Manager uses event-capture technology, via real-time HL7 interface connectivity, to track, hour by hour, patient admissions, discharges and transfers. The software also incorporates real-time changes in acuity level and patient condition from EMR or patient assessments.

“It’s very powerful to forecast both high census and high-care patients,” Kasnic emphasizes. “Because of this, we can shift some patient care activities and staffing to ensure that patient care is continuous while managing our productivity. And patient volume ‘hot spots’ can be anticipated and managed before they occur.”

For instance, she explains, “a few months ago, we experienced an emergent backlog of patients in our ER exacerbated by a high patient care unit census. We used Demand Manager to help find the best approaches for patient discharge and unit transfers to move all of our patients safely and effectively though the organization.”

Pickard points out that Central Washington Hospital’s adoption of ClairVia Demand Manager positions it to improve ongoing cost management. “The costs associated with prolonged length of stay are significant,” she says. “And by optimizing each patient’s movement, from care entry point to care exit point, organizations can not only reduce expenses, but gain additional revenue opportunities.”

Predictive capabilities deliver significant improvements in staff productivity, overtime reduction at Midland Memorial Hospital

At Midland Memorial Hospital, ClairVia Demand Manager’s predictive technology is helping improve ongoing productivity management.

“With ClairVia Demand Manager, we now spend much more time looking at what we anticipate productivity to be in the week ahead than we do on productivity from last week,” reports Robert L. Dent, RN, MBA, NEA-BC, FACHE Vice President, and Chief Nursing Officer at Midland Memorial Hospital. “This predictive element has allowed us, over the past several months, to significantly improve productivity. According to Dent, the “leadership team collectively are using a common language for prediction, while also increasing the transparency of productivity management.”

ClairVia Demand Manager enables organizations like Midland Memorial Hospital to follow a more orderly, predictable approach to staff management, and avoid many “last-minute,” crisis-mode decisions that typically results in limited options for quality and cost control, and increased use of overtime and agency.”

“With Demand Manager, over the past six to eight months, our organization is operating closer to our desired benchmarks and with a reduction in overtime from 7% to 4%,” Dent reports. ”Overall, we feel that we have just begun to take advantage of this new technology to help better manage our productivity. We look forward to using it to its full potential in the new future.”

About Central Washington Hospital

Central Washington Hospital is the major not-for-profit medical facility and referral center for residents of North Central Washington.

Services provided by Central Washington Hospital include: inpatient and outpatient surgery, cardiac program, coronary and intensive care, respiratory care, oncology, dialysis, neonatal nursery, home health and hospice, regional trauma emergency department, skilled nursing and rehabilitative services such as cardio-pulmonary, physical, speech, and occupational therapies.

For more information, visit www.cwhs.com.

About Midland Hospital

For over 50 years, Midland Memorial Hospital --- the only not-for-profit hospital in Midland County, Texas --- has delivered high quality, accessible healthcare for citizens of central Texas.

Over the decades, Midland Memorial Hospital has changed dramatically to meet the needs of the dynamic community it serves. The hospital has undergone numerous physical expansions and introduced many innovative programs, such as the Heart Institute and various rehabilitation programs. Additional campuses offer supplementary programs and services including treatments for cancer (Allison Cancer Center), women's and children's health care services (West Campus) and the various outpatient programs offered at both Main Campus and West Campus.

For more information, visit www.midland-memorial.com.

About AtStaff, Inc.

Patient management and staff management software systems from AtStaff serve more than 1,200 healthcare organizations, medical facilities, nursing departments and group practices.

AtStaff’s ClairVia solutions for the hospital marketplace improve quality of care, patient safety, patient throughput and staff satisfaction by ensuring that healthcare organizations deliver value exactly when it is needed to achieve positive patient outcomes and financial results.

For more information, visit www.clairvia.com and www.atstaff.com.

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