IHA Innovative Healthcare Award 2016

Kaiser Permanente San Diego Receives the 2016 IHA Award Innovative Healthcare

Healthcare Giant Finds Wireless Tagging Solution Provides Multiple Efficiencies

NEW YORK, February 22, 2016 — The Intelligent Health Association (IHA) announced today the recipient of its 2016 Innovative Healthcare Award is Kaiser Permanente San Diego, part of a vast healthcare system serving more than 9 million members in 9 states and the District of Columbia.

Work processes at Kaiser Permanente are scrutinized endlessly to afford efficiencies and cost savings. In August 2014, the San Diego affiliate, with 600,000-plus members, over 7,700 staff and more than 1,197 physicians care for members at 25 medical facilities, including the 414-bed Medical Center and a 78-bed emergency department.

The affiliate conducted an inventory that included reusable HoverMatts used to facilitate patient transfers. The inventory revealed that almost 400 mats had been ordered, but less than 8 months later, fewer than half remained—a loss of $445,000. Further, almost 5,400 more disposable mats were purchased in 2014 than in 2013, totaling $1.8 million, and projected to cost an additional $2.2 million in 2015. By May 2015, the number of reusable mats was down to one-quarter of the original order. The cost for the mats, reusable or disposable, were proving to be exorbitantly costly for the San Diego facilities.

With an RTLS already in place, San Diego Kaiser Permanente deployed a 6-month pilot tagging and tracking the remaining reusable HoverMatts. A new interdisciplinary team was created comprising eight units, such as patient care services, inpatient transport, and materials management. With the help of the Awarepoint, RTLS integrator, new notifications were incorporated to track as equipment the reusable HoverMatts. During the pilot, 36 mats were recovered from trash ready for disposal — a savings of $101,316. San Diego adjusted the workflow by adding a holding area for mats in transition to be refreshed. Additionally, units were re-educated on the use and management of the mats. Ironically, the pilot also revealed that the tags were easily torn from the mats, because they were used as handles to carry the mats and patients. Working with the vendor, the tags are now installed using grommets. Andrea Odom, financial analyst, oversaw the analysis that led to this award. To learn more, visit kp.org/sandiego.

About the Intelligent Health Association
The Intelligent Health Association (IHA) is a global, technology-based and technology-focused organization comprising many new technology communities and societies all operating under one organizational structure with a common goal: to help drive the “Evolution to the Health Revolution™ ” through the adoption and implementation of new technologies in the health ecosystem.

View this press release as a .pdf here.

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Media Contact:
Anne Olscher