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Baptist Memorial Hospital focused on reducing pneumonia readmissions through Kata, a rapid cycle improvement process
Baptist Memorial Hospital has been focusing on readmissions for quite some time but for the last two years, we received the readmissions penalty. We found out that we were higher than the national average for pneumonia readmissions rates so we decided to examine our processes to address this issue.
About a year ago, our health system took on the challenge to train all the directors, managers and staff to look at performance improvement at a different way. We were introduced to some aspects of the Toyota Production System and kata was a part of that. Kata is a way of learning a new habit utilizing rapid cycle improvement PSDA to guide deliberate thinking and problem solving locally instead of jumping to a solution.
We pulled a team together of some of our most experienced kata trained employees and kata coaches to focus on pneumonia (PN) readmissions. We asked ourselves, “Where do we want to be in nine months? What should our goal be?”
We created a three-day event, called Get Better Jump Start (GBJS). The GBJS team consisted of a case manager, educator, nursing, respiratory care, PT, quality, senior leaders and a physician champion.
We did a deep dive into the issue so we could understand the current condition and identify obstacles. We reviewed our PN readmission data for the past 12 months. We contacted and interviewed some of the post-acute care facilities and our primary care physicians and asked how we were doing and what we could learn from them. We had a lot of lessons learned and “ah-ha” moments from connecting the dots and conversations with the team. After the evaluation from this three-day event, we decided to pilot our improvements with the 47-bed Medical-Oncology unit because our data showed most PN readmissions came from that floor.
1. Developed hypothesis targeting obstacles. We decided to focus on discharge education and communication between caregivers internally.
2. Utilized Training Within Industry (TWI). This is a method to train staff to help reduce variation.
We developed a Job Instruction Breakdown (JIB) for all staff (nursing and ancillary) to standardize patient education specific to PN. When training staff, we would use a JIB to identify important steps in a process, key points about the step and rationale supporting the key points. We created Pneumonia talking points for our multi-disciplinary meetings (MDM) and standard work for patients with pneumonia. I think this was one of the most important things that came out of it the TWI. When patient is admitted, diagnosed or develops PN, one of the initial pieces during the standard work is to take that JIB and put it on the white board in the room and educate that the patient is diagnosed with PN. Then every staff member that goes into the room can references the JIB, and review all the important steps, key points, and reasons for key points with the patient and/or family.
3. Utilized TWI on patients. We’ve used TWI on other processes with staff but this was the first time we used it with patients. We emphasized important things related to the patient. We made sure the patient understood the following and more:
Get Better Jump Start Kata Boards
The board on the left focuses on the discharge process. On the right, the MDM process is displayed.
We completed the pilot on March 31, 2017. We implemented several things:
We learned that the JIB is working. During leader rounding and case manager interviews, staff sees the JIB and mentions to the patients that they are a PN patient. Many patients respond, “Yes, I know that I am a PN patient, and why I need to take all my antibiotics, keep my follow up appointment, eat better, and why I need to let home health come and evaluate me.” From these types of statements we learned that we were teaching our patients a new way of thinking about their recovery.
Don’t go into any problem or opportunity for improvement with any preconceived notions, or jump to solutions without knowing your REAL current condition. Many improvement efforts failed because we didn’t really know the current condition, and what barriers/obstacles are faced by caregivers and patients. We initially thought perhaps some patients couldn’t afford follow up appointments and that the readmission was caused by financial stress. However, our data showed otherwise.
Feedback from post-acute care providers really shed light on opportunities we weren’t aware of, such as making sure patients have enough of their home respiratory meds, MDI’s until their follow-up appointment. This led us to add to our standard work for Respiratory Therapy to check the amount in home MDI canisters. We needed to be open minded and take a deep dive into the current condition to pull out the real issues.
The GBJS Kata team: Alicia Grant, Tiffany Johnson, Belinda Sanderson, Mary Ellen Sumrall, Ashley Perry, Pam Richardson, Brandy Waldrop, Kayla Pruitt, Bridgett Alexander, Leslie Albright, Sandy Holman, Lauri Sansing, Dawn Thomas, and Ben Hughes
Program Challenges: Building Commitment for Care Transitions, Coordinating Care Across the Whole Team
Topics: Identifying causes of readmission, Measuring and improving
Collaborator (Non-Members): Tiffany Johnson, Case Manager; Mary Ellen Sumrall, CNO
Organization Name: Baptist Memorial Hospital-Golden Triangle
Location: 2520 N 5th St, Columbus, MS 39705
Organization Type: Hospital
Organization Model: Not Set