Trial of changes in hospital ER goes well

by Lauren Randall, Greenwood Commonwealth

Greenwood Leflore Hospital’s first test of its revamped emergency room operation passed with flying colors, hospital officials say.

We saw 101 patients, and nobody waited. Everybody that walked through the door got seen, evaluated and discharged without any problem,” said Gloria Boyd, chief nursing officer, of Monday’s “go live trial.”

The results of the test run were presented to the hospital board Tuesday during a specially called meeting.

Reworking of the patient flow in the emergency room is being directed by Vizient, a Dallas-based consulting firm hired by the hospital last year to hel it increase revenue and decrease costs. A major point of emphasis is reducing the wait time in the emergency room.

On Monday, according to Key Britt, the hospital’s vice president of administrative services, it took only 11 minutes after a patient entered the hospital before the patient was seen by a physician in the emergency room.

Dawne Holmes, the chief financial officer, said that the total length of stay for that day compared to the hospital’s average was reduced by 47 minutes.

Holmes previously reported that the average wait time for March had been roughly 2 hours, and 47 minutes, but the percent of patients who left without being seen was the lowest it has been at 3.7 percent.

A few details in the redesign will be tweaked, including adding additional staff and changing out stretchers, before it is officially implemented May 22.

Vizient has focused in the emergency room on reworking patient flow, providing new space for patient care and adjusting staff and physician schedules.

“All the docotrs were very pleased and excited,” Boyd said.

The hospital board members also expressed their pleasure with the results. Chairman Brian Waldrop commended the Vizient team for its work.

The board later went into executive session to discuss personal contracts.

Contact Lauren Randall at 662-581-7239 or lrandall@gwcommonwealth.com.