Category Archives: Emergency Medicine

10 January 2017

Retail Clinics Near EDs Do Not Decrease Low-Acuity ED Visits

The opening of retail clinics within a 10-minute drive of emergency departments (EDs) has not resulted in reduced ED utilization for low-acuity conditions such as influenza, urinary tract infections and earaches, according to a recent study by RAND Corporation researchers. The study was published in the Annals of Emergency Medicine, the peer-reviewed scientific journal for the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP).

The findings contradict the assertions of some healthcare experts and policymakers that increasing the number of retail clinics could reduce ED visits by patients with low-acuity conditions. The study notes that about 13.7% of all emergency department visits are for low-acuity...

5 January 2017

Our 10 Most Popular Blog Posts of 2016

The most-read posts on the Sheridan blog in 2016 focused on key topics – ranging from the challenges involved in the transition to value-based care and this country’s physician burnout epidemic to exciting technology innovations and trends in clinical practice.

The 10 most popular posts from the past year are:

How to Manage the Burdens of Change on Physicians and Health Care Practitioners, a summary of Chief Quality Officer Dr. Gerald Maccioli’s presentation at the 2016 Health:Further Summit about the overwhelming burdens on providers created by current and planned changes to the U.S. health care landscape and strategies for managing them.

Sheridan’s 2016 Leadership...

15 December 2016

U.S. Surgeon General Calls for Action on the Opioid Crisis

Opioid abuse remains a devastating public health concern, and the health care community has grappled with its role in the crisis and medical professionals’ responsibility to patients struggling with substance use. U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy has responded with a report released last month analyzing the current opioid crisis and providing several recommendations for treating and preventing substance use disorders. These recommendations include:

1. Eliminate stigma

Misconceptions and negative judgments about people with substance use disorder abound, and the report stresses that even medical professionals are not immune to seeing addiction as a “moral failing or character...

13 December 2016

Five Key Strategies for Driving Change in the OR

Now more than ever, hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers are seeking anesthesia partners capable of driving positive change in their operating rooms. However, for many anesthesia providers, there are hurdles that must be overcome before such change can be realized.

Anesthesia groups of any size, regardless of their financial strength, can employ proven strategies to ensure the success of facility-wide patient care improvement initiatives. Here are five such strategies that Dr. Adam Blomberg, Sheridan’s national education director, has found to be effective.

Collaborate with nursing and surgeons on incremental steps toward larger improvements

Securing the buy-in of nursing and surgical staff is...

22 November 2016

Getting Creative with Emergency Room Care Starts with the Human Element

There is a new authority ruling emergency rooms across San Diego County, created to combat the influx of patients overwhelming the health care system in recent years. Known as “bed czars” and “zoomer nurses,” as featured in the San Diego Union-Tribune, medical personnel at Sharp Grossmont Hospital and Tri-City Medical Center monitor the ED and help make decisions to “fast track” patient care. They determine the patients with minor medical problems and allow them to remain for treatment and discharge, while patients with more severe conditions requiring at minimum an overnight stay are quickly transferred to the appropriate department.

The creation of these new positions...

10 November 2016

Online Symptom Checkers List Correct Diagnosis First Only One-Third of the Time

Patients increasingly rely on online sources of medical information, including WebMD and Google. Patients’ increasing engagement in their healthcare is a good thing, but they often come in with an incorrect diagnosis based on online research, as Dr. Catherine Polera, Chief Medical Officer for Sheridan’s Emergency Services division explained in a MedPage Today article. Now physicians can show their patients concrete evidence that a doctor’s diagnosis is far more likely to be correct than that of a computer algorithm.

Researchers at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston recently tested the diagnostic accuracy of trained physicians compared to that of online...

24 October 2016

Using CRM and Time-Outs to Focus Hurried OR Teams on Patient Safety

The shift to value-based care and the imminent implementation of MACRA have made efficiency healthcare’s new mantra, and U.S. hospitals and healthcare systems have made operating rooms a high-priority target for optimization. ORs in U.S. hospitals generate about 70% of a hospital’s revenues and operate at a staffed-capacity utilization of 60-70% and OR time costs roughly $80 an hour, so it’s not surprising that metrics like on-time starts, turnover times, same-day cancellations and OR under- and overutilization are under scrutiny. But speed is not the same thing as efficiency, and the faster OR teams work, the greater the risk of something going wrong. 

Dr. Adam Blomberg, National Education...

19 October 2016

Sheridan’s 2016 Leadership Conference Recognizes Eight Outstanding Clinical Leaders

The annual three-day Sheridan Leadership Conference is Sheridan Leadership Academy’s flagship event. This year’s conference took place Sept. 30-Oct. 2 in Orlando, Florida and was attended by nearly 600 physician and allied health leaders. 

 

Strengthening the Core

President of Physician Services Robert Coward and CEO Chris Holden provided opening remarks and introduced this year’s conference theme, “Strengthening the Core,” which focused on the key attributes required to succeed as a Sheridan clinical leader. Throughout the conference, each service line held multiple breakout sessions to promote discussion and knowledge sharing of topics related to the...

11 July 2016

Engaging Physicians Collaboratively to Innovate Emergency Medicine

In today’s value-based care environment, healthcare providers are feeling the urgency of finding better ways to improve their processes and communications.   The problems caused by inefficient processes and poor communication are magnified exponentially in emergency departments (EDs) because of the high patient volume and high proportion of patients needing urgent care.  Sheridan physicians have already implemented innovative ED process and communication improvements that have improved patient care, cleared ED bottlenecks, dramatically lowered “left before being seen” rates and increased patient satisfaction. In 2015, the organization launched an annual Innovate Emergency Medicine (iEM) conference to...

6 July 2016

Physician Spotlight: Jody Crane, MD, MBA

Dr. Jody Crane is the chief clinical operations officer for Sheridan’s Emergency Medicine Division. A respected expert in emergency department (ED) operations, Dr. Crane wears many hats. In addition to his responsibilities at Sheridan, he’s the co-author of “The Definitive Guide to Emergency Department Operational Improvement: Employing Lean Principles with Current ED Best Practices to Create the ‘No Wait’ Department.” He’s also a very active educator who is helping to drive healthcare process and clinical improvements around the world.

Dr. Crane’s work in these varied roles focuses on ED and hospital-wide operations, the application of lean principles within the healthcare...