Bad Communications Technology Is Causing Errors in Emergency Rooms

From TechSpective:

New research into the communications challenges that emergency room employees face every day in our nation’s hospitals and medical facilities reveals patient care suffers when manual processes are used.

A new report “Care Communication Gaps in U.S. Hospital Emergency Departments” from Everbridge, Inc. polled 158 emergency department employees about the communication challenges that arise when coordinating patient care from one doctor/nurse/practitioner to another – and what technologies are most effective at accurately sharing patient care instructions.

A majority of emergency room employees reported that more than 10 percent of patient care hand offs contain communication errors – errors that could endanger patient care outcomes; 22 percent reported that more than one in five hand offs involve errors. Hand offs occur more often in emergency rooms because the care teams needed to treat patients are larger than for the rest of the hospital. For example, in order to manage a stroke patient, an average care team might involve 12-15 doctors, nurses and staff members spread out inside and potentially outside the hospital. With 59 percent of emergency departments reporting more hand offs to other care team members than for treatments originating elsewhere in the hospital, it is easy to see how these errors could happen

Health Care Rankings: Iowa #5

From US News:

The states were ranked on health care using three broad benchmarks: Access to care, quality of care and the overall health of the population. This includes concerning measures such as the percentage of adults without health insurance and the percentage who haven’t had a routine checkup in the past year – including those who went without medical attention because of the cost. It includes positive measures such as the percentage of children receiving medical and dental care under Medicaid. It includes measures of hospital readmissions within 30 days of discharge, nursing home citations and numbers of seniors covered under high-quality Medicare Advantage plans. It involves general measures that correspond with good health – rates of smoking and obesity. And it takes into account infant and overall mortality rates.

#5 Iowa

The Hospital Is A Cornerstone Of Small Town Rural Life

From Colorado Public Radio:

One chronic problem is that reimbursement to hospitals through Medicare doesn’t cover the full cost of their services. Lyons was on the hospital’s board, when it nearly shut down a couple of decades ago. He wants lawmakers to work together to keep the parts of Obamacare that work and fix funding for hospitals.

“You don’t drown the duck to get a feather out of him,” Lyons said.

Back up the hall, Ken Sterling also supports whatever helps save his hometown hospital. “Don’t even talk about losing this place!” Sterling exclaims. “That would be a tragedy. Really.”

Both know rural hospital finances are tricky. As Congress aims to reform health care once more, many small town facilities like Lincoln County Hospital, are on thin ice.