As we completed the discovery portion of our analytics improvement efforts, several recommendations emerged which included but were not limited to:
• Centralization of analytics under a single management to support strategy
• Cleaning up the present analytic and report catalogues and aligning them with strategy
• Revisiting our data definitions and establishing standards for their use
• Governance of information requests and catalogue maintenance
Having implemented these recommendations, we are starting to see benefits in each of these areas, perhaps most noticeably in the reduction of duplicated information and inconsistently used data sources. This has led us to the development of a single, standardized Data & Analytics portal which will come to be the single entry point for all organizational and operational information.
The Data and Analytics Portal
Our organization recently transitioned our Intranet to Microsoft Sharepoint. This not only gave us an organization wide distribution ability but it also gave each department an area to develop content unique to them.
Given that, we chose to piggy back on that initiative and start to integrate our analytic tool sets within the Sharepoint framework. This would give us a centralized entry point for information as well as leverage existing technology we already had. We focused on an initial implementation of 5 key areas to begin the portal development.
We started off with development of a series of dashboards relating to operation of our Ambulatory Clinics. The thought process behind this was with 103 clinics at present, this would be the largest audience and our best opportunity at socializing our new portal. We focused on 6 primary metrics:
• Provider Utilization – Essentially the measurement of Physician time to Hours of Operation
• New Patient Access - Average number of weekdays by which a New Patient could be scheduled
• Clinic Productivity – Staff to Volume percentage
• Completed Visit Percentage – All scheduled visits which resulted in a completed encounter
• No-Show Percentage - Patients who failed to keep their appointments
• Canceled Appointment – Patients or Physicians who canceled appointments
For inpatient metrics, we focused on an ‘air traffic control’ model whereby we would use historical and seasonal based averages to predict expected Inpatient flow. For this particular set of dashboards we focused on:
• Emergency Room volume
• Average Admission Rate for the season
• Inpatient vs Observation admission rates
• Percentage of Inpatient to ICU admits
• Average length of time from admission order to bed placement
Compilation of this information will help our Administrative Supervisors have an automated way of looking throughout the day at what they can expect in the way of Inpatient traffic.
As people began to see consistently presented information, we will begin to socialize a standard operational language that should reduce the number of siloed and segregated understandings of our key metrics
As we learned in the discovery process, there were many, many requests for volumes, statistics, marketing and branding types of information requested through the year. This presented an excellent opportunity to consolidate and centralize these as yet another topic on the portal. Those in need of this information could easily access the portal to gain the insights they needed at a time that was convenient for them. This reduced requests for information significantly. A few highlights of information we provide are:
• The gender and age distribution of the children we see
• The top 5 diagnosis codes
• Our payor mix in terms of scheduled and completed visits
• New and Unique patient counts
• Encounter volumes and information
In order to assist our Government Relations staff with information to use when they visit our State and Federal Legislative sessions, we used Geo-Spatial software to create a map of Texas broken out by Congressional District. Within each Congressional District, we can now view the same types of information we share in the Our Patients topic listed above.
In our Executive Overview topic, we are putting up all board level information so that this information can be viewed via the portal during board sessions thereby relieving the need for massive amounts of printed information. This is also where we will post dashboards that create the ‘feedback loop’ so that executive and operational leadership can view, in summary fashion, the performance of the Ambulatory and Inpatient efforts. Whereas front line managers and directors see the more detailed and deep dive dashboards, we have aggregated them in terms of top and bottom performers in a graphical and trending nature.
In closing, we see further development and evolution of our Data & Analytics portal to be an important step in crafting organizational focus. As people began to see consistently presented information, we will begin to socialize a standard operational language that should reduce the number of siloed and segregated understandings of our key metrics and analytics that exists today.