Tidelands Health helps other providers learn to better care for patients
Tidelands Health is helping other health care providers learn ways they can improve patient care and support.
On Wednesday, three Tidelands Health leaders were joined by representatives with Amedisys Inc., which partners with the health system to offer home health care, to present the first installment of a new webinar series hosted by The Carolinas Center for Medical Excellence, a not-for-profit organization that aims to improve the quality of health care.
Monica Grey, associate vice president of transitional services at Tidelands Health, Michele Sizemore, director of case management, and Lora Martin, clinical manager of the health system’s community resource team, explored how the health system is using data and communication strategies to help reduce hospital readmission rates and improve the coordination of patients’ care.
They explained how Tidelands Health case managers evaluate a patient’s broad spectrum of needs upon admission to Tidelands Waccamaw Community Hospital and Tidelands Georgetown Memorial Hospital. The information is used to help connect patients with support and resources within the hospitals and to plan for the individual’s discharge. Patients are engaged throughout the process.
“A person’s health care journey doesn’t start or stop at a hospital,” Grey said. “Our goal is to take a holistic look at the needs of our patients and help ensure they are met.”
Once a patient is admitted to either of the hospitals, the health system utilizes a team-based approach to develop a personalized care plan. Depending on the patient, the care plan may involve physicians, nurses, pharmacists, therapists, nutritionists and others.
At the time of discharge, the health system may work with partners, including assisted living facilities, skilled nursing providers and home health agencies, to facilitate the patient’s transition back into the community. Often, patients continue to receive outpatient care through the health system.
Data plays an integral part in the process, helping the health system and its partners evaluate progress and identify additional areas for improvement.
As a result of the health system’s approach, patients have benefited from shorter hospital stays, reduced hospital readmission rates and improved communication and coordination, Sizemore said.
“There are a lot of reasons to use this type of approach, but improved patient care is the most important,” Sizemore said. “We want to give our patients tools and resources they need to achieve their highest level of health and wellness.”