Cath Lab Management

Hoag Hospital Mines Data to Help Managers Focus on Issues and Answers

Regina D. Thomas*, RN, BSN, CLNC in collaboration with Joanne C. Colley**, CVT, Cath Lab Supervisor
Regina D. Thomas*, RN, BSN, CLNC in collaboration with Joanne C. Colley**, CVT, Cath Lab Supervisor
Initially, the cath lab’s Calysto Series IV system (Witt Biomedical, Melbourne, FL) was used exclusively for physiomonitoring procedural notes and supply tracking in the cath lab control rooms, as well as patient assessment and nurse charting at workstations in the procedure rooms. Joanne then discovered that the system had the ability to do point-of-care charging, tracking of supplies and room utilization, as well as personnel and physician time-management data. She decided to begin utilizing these functions. Inventory. We set our inventory menus to track diagnostic, interventional and electrophysiology supplies on a concurrent basis. With established par levels, reordering is based on actual need for product, rather than a ‘perceived’ need or ‘guess.’ This efficiency allows us to maintain a ‘Just-In-Time’ inventory system, saving the hospital substantial costs annually. Without the system, my job would be considerably more difficult, Joanne notes. Statistics. In addition to inventory control, Joanne relies on the system to track statistical data. As a manager, she uses the query and reporting part of the system on a daily basis, for tasks ranging from routine to custom. Some of the routine areas that I query are physician activity and types of procedures. We’re able to look at individual physician supply usage, average fluoro times, and procedure times. This has been valuable for tracking quality indicatiors, room utilization and scheduling blocks, and for budget preparation. Financial aspects. Another area where the system has been utilized at Hoag Hospital is in preparing financial reports. For example, for high-volume and high-cost supplies, such as stents, Joanne can find out how many procedures were performed over a given time period, how many stents were used, and the average number deployed. She compares vendor usage and market share, and makes appropriate decisions through collaboration with Hoag’s Value Management Team. Other areas of the hospital need timely, accurate data beyond the financial realm the quality assurance staff, critical pathway teams, administration, cost accounting, and purchasing, Joanne says. Prior to implementing the Witt systems, everything was tracked by hand. Scheduling. In the system is the Calysto scheduler, which IS our scheduler, Joanne emphasizes. Our scheduling secretaries use the system exclusively for room assignments. We are able to mix and match rooms depending on procedure types. If we need to switch a certain procedure to a different room, it’s very simple. The system gives the staff access to changes in the daily schedule. If a room finishes early, our lead technologist is facilitating the next procedure in the first available lab, thereby maximizing operations. Without the ability of staff to access the scheduler and see the changes, the communication issues would be enormous. It’s a very dynamic operation and we need a scheduling system with this type of flexibility. HR. Joanne also uses the system for her human resources needs. I run a daily physician procedure activity report to come up with the actual units of service, calculate the workload required to do procedures and actual staffing hours used, and have developed an HR variance report to track staffing patterns, overtime, sick days, registry use, case mix, and planned and actual staffing. This information can be used as the basis for trend analysis. Annual performance and competency evaluations are also completed with data from the system. Joanne queries the activities of staff to determine the types of cases and how many times they have scrubbed or monitored. Based on that information, I can determine if individual staff members are actively participating in specific high-risk or high-volume procedures in adequate numbers to maintain their competency, and they can be assigned appropriately. Joanne Colley can be contacted at: