Most of the evidence collected points back to the lack of a dedicated transport department. Healthcare facilities that do not have a transport team are faced with the challenge of utilizing their clinicians and medical staff to handle patient transports, which results in a loss of clinical time and takes away from patient care. This has a tremendous impact on patient satisfaction, left without being seen and left without treatment rates, and can create major bottlenecks in patient flow operations. However, adding a dedicated transport team within the facility can alter the patient experience creating lasting positive effects on patient throughput, as well as help increase the job satisfaction of the healthcare team.
“It is important to keep patients moving throughout the facility with less wait time, less confusion, and less stress. Anytime a nurse or clinical team member spends time transporting a patient rather than on the floor, it can greatly affect throughput times and create inefficient patient flow,” states David Kraeger, HHS President of Transportation and Linen Utilization.
As such, patient transport teams are highly trained to help the efficiency of the throughput process. “They do not simply manage the transport process, but they actively seek ways to increase effectiveness and improve results,” continues Kraeger. “Through ongoing in-depth analysis of discharge times and patterns, transport teams can provide greater accuracy to the patient flow process. Further, by effectively measuring results and utilizing technology specific to the industry, transport teams can improve operational excellence and resolve any issues that need to be addressed quickly.”
“When a hospital contracts with a support service provider for transport, they need to be sure that the transporters will be equipped not only with industry-leading knowledge, but they will also be trained with best practices in hospitality and customer service. This contributes to the patient experience and helps bring comfort to patients during their already trying time,” states McCuistion.
Transport teams have a unique opportunity to make a big impact on the overall satisfaction and comfort level for each patient while also collaborating with and supporting clinicians and hospital staff in the process. A dedicated transport department can mean more open schedules for clinicians and increased efficiency throughout the hospital. Additionally, transporters play a fundamental role in evaluating each step of the transport process to help improve technical components, safety protocols, and patient interaction. This small change brings about big results that are felt across the entire facility.
The significance of this article addresses the model of time x efficiency especially when transporting patients in a hospital setting. Not only is there a need for trust in the equipment/machines that are utilized but it is also important to have the nurses, etc. preforming at their maximum potential which includes placing their focus towards the areas that need it the most, not wasting excess time. Opportunities that can be presented to target time efficiency would be the way in which the nurses etc. direct their line of sight to the ventilator, patient, travel path and back. With the current ventilator system, many of the screens are small and filled with information and data making it difficult to interpret with little to no thinking involved. Also, because the ventilator is placed in an awkward locations a times, it will require further effort to work around and then access the information. Therefore, it is apparent that taking the thinking/guess work out of reading a ventilator will enable for better quality of time when transporting a patient.