From SHM

SHM and Neurohospitalist Society partner on new program for stroke patients

Participating hospitals hope to optimize neurovascular interventions

The Society of Hospital Medicine recently partnered with the Neurohospitalist Society (NHS) to apply the neurology, stroke, and neurohospitalist expertise of NHS to the hospital and mentored implementation expertise of SHM for a uniquely positioned program for hospitals and health care systems: the Optimizing Neurovascular Intervention Care for Stroke Patients Mentored Implementation program.

This program aims to provide the resources and training to equip neurologists and hospitals with the skills to help assure continuous quality in the care of stroke patients with large vessel occlusion. The program will help neurohospitalists and other clinicians identify opportunities to engage multidisciplinary team members to implement evidence-based management practices in their hospital.

Reading Hospital – Tower Health, West Reading, Pa., was one of four hospitals selected to participate in the first wave of this program. Tower Health also recently became SHM’s first health system institutional partner. The Hospitalist spoke with a team from Reading Hospital about their participation in the new program and how they think it could affect their care. Interviewees included Sarah Keller, RN, nurse specialist; Deepam Gokal, MD, an associate director of hospitalist services; and Ruth Bailey, RN, stroke program manager.

What led you to partner with SHM for this program?

Dr. Gokal is an associate director of hospitalist services and comedical director of the stroke program, is a member of SHM, and was a former member of NHS; he received an email regarding the mentored implementation program for continuous quality monitoring and improvement in the care of stroke patients with large vessel occlusions. Karen Hoerst, MD, is a vascular neurologist and stroke program comedical director, and Ruth Bailey, RN, is the stroke program manager; together, we reviewed the introductory webinar with Dr. Gokal and felt this program would be beneficial for our organization, in particular because of Reading Hospital’s recent acquisition of five hospitals to form Tower Health – Brandywine Hospital, Coatesville, Pa.; Chestnut Hill Hospital, Philadelphia; Jennersville Hospital, West Grove, Pa.; Phoenixville (Pa.) Hospital; and Pottstown (Pa.) Hospital – and to help fulfill our vision to become the hub facility and a comprehensive stroke center.

Did you have a history with SHM prior to this program and before Tower Health’s new institutional partnership with SHM?

Reading Hospital participated in Project BOOST, SHM’s care transitions mentored implementation program, from 2012 to 2013. The goal was to optimize the hospital discharge process and to mitigate and prevent known complications and errors that occur during transitions. This was championed by hospitalists Walter R. Bohnenblust Jr., MD, SFHM, former Director of Hospitalist Services, and Binu Pappachen, MD, FHM.

The pain management provider team at Reading Hospital also championed an opioid management mentored implementation program in 2016-2017 that sought to improve safety and reduce adverse events for patients receiving opioids.

How do you anticipate this program will affect outcomes?

Reading Hospital – Tower Health is committed to advancing health care and transforming lives. The aim is to provide better care for individuals, improve health strategies, and reduce health care costs. This mentorship program should support this commitment to value-based care and population health management. It should prove beneficial to Reading Hospital by optimizing neurovascular interventions, which will help it become the intended hub for the Tower Health Teleneurology Program.

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