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Keeping Up With Growth: UChicago Medicine

Crothall Healthcare Patient Transport Division is a leader in expediting care delivery in hospital settings, with processes that build value into every patient interaction. UChicago Medicine (University of Chicago Medicine), one of the nation’s leading academic medical institutions located on an expansive urban campus, partnered with Crothall Healthcare Patient Transport Division to provide exceptional transport service in its four medical centers.

Crothall introduced new practical toolsand a new culture. “Crothall transport
leaders effectively communicated with
hospital leadership at all levels, emphasizing
the alignment with the institution’s priorities
and culture to drive improvement in patient transport operations. UChicago Medicine senior leadership selected Crothall Healthcare over its competitors after a national RFP process,” said Daryl Wilkerson, Vice President Support Services at UChicago Medicine.

“Crothall has done a great job for us here,” said Wilkerson. “With the focus on the patient of today and tomorrow, Crothall’s Patient Transport leadership are working to instill in the employees the positive role they play in patient care and how the outcome metrics show their work accomplishments.”

A Culture of Improvement 

The logistical need for patient throughputis critical to the success of patient care. Improvement in length of stay (LOS) and reduction of emergency (ED) and post-anesthesia care (PACU) wait for an inpatient bed are key priorities. Within the first year of Crothall’s expertise, patient transport task completion times were cut by 56%, and increased patient discharge tasks volume to 81%. This was a 100% improvement in efficiency over the tenure of the previous transport management team.

“Crothall provides a solid leadership team, who listen and have become a part of our system,” said Greg Horner, Vice President, Operational Excellence (OE) at UChicago Medicine. “The utilization of data, predictive modeling, clear expectations and accountability made a significant difference in the performance of the patient transport department.”

“Even a five-minute reduction in transport time increases our capacity as an institution. Response times used to take over 25 minutes on average, now we can be as low as 13 minutes,” said Garrett Larance, ED Director at UChicago Medicine.

More Volume, Higher Efficiency 

Response time and delays dropped radically while transport volume increased. “Before
our partnership with Crothall’s Patient Transport Division, patient transport request-to-progress task times were too high. We took an approach to work across the whole institution on transport, focusing on clearing the emergency department (ED),” said Garrett Larance, Director of the Emergency Department at UChicago Medicine.

“Our team started leaving zoning and shift decisions to the experts at Crothall,” said Larance. “Addressing spikes in patient volume and an open dialogue with transport management lets us make changes very quickly and get results. Even a five-minute reduction in transport time increases our capacity as an institution.”

By the Numbers

100% improvement in completed inpatient discharge task volume

56% reduction of patient transport task completion times

37% productivity increase in transport

140 labor hours saved every month

78% decrease in late or first-case starts

Part of the Improvement Team 

Patient Transport worked in partnershipwith the clinical staff to create and implement new ICU processes. Dr. Frank Dupont, M.D., Assistant Professor for Anesthesia & Critical Care at UChicago Medicine leads a team consistent with Lean process improvement principles.

“Scheduling Patient Transport appointments for ICU patients scheduled in the OR relies on doctors’ trust in the system,” said Dr. Dupont. “Transporters must get there at the right time and Crothall patient transport allows for this level of trust.”

OR efficiency for ICU patients scheduled for surgery has significantly improved according to a recent study. On-time OR starts increased from 40% to 73%, and the probability of an on- time OR start increased from 59% to 86%.

The Right Decision for Growth 

Quality patient transport management in UChicago Medicine. “What we needed was an active management team that didn’t shy from getting out on the floor to see what was actually happening,” said Jason Lipes, Director, Operational Excellence Partner at UChicago Medicine.

“Crothall rounds consistently on patient floors, and they celebrate the wins. It makes a big difference to showcase exactly why people are doing what they’re doing,” said Carmen Acevedo, Operational Excellence Partner at UChicago Medicine.

“Crothall is more than patient transport,” said Horner. “Crothall’s there to be your partner and help drive improvement in your organization. Crothall Patient Transport have process improvement skills that adapt to our culture of operational excellence and expectations. Now, we have a transport team ready to problem-solve and aware of the value they bring to the patients.”

To learn what Crothall can do for your organization, call 1-877-4CROTHALL (1-877-427-6842).