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Posts Tagged ‘St. Luke’s’

Dr. Kurt Seppi on the Fundamentals of Population Health Management

Tuesday, May 13th, 2014

The foundational requirements that I believe are necessary for successfully population health management are:

  • Strategy and cultural alignment
  • Integrated electronic health records
  • Enterprise data warehouse with clinical and financial data
  • Standardized workflows
  • Analytic capabilities
  • Aligned clinical and business incentives

Here’s what St. Luke’s is doing to address them:

Strategy and culture

Our strategy for transformation is to provide accountable care, but it’s been said that culture will eat strategy for lunch every time.

Cultural alignment and commitment to transformation among our internal stakeholders is the key to success. Here’s a link to our physician compact, which lays out expectations of St. Luke’s and aligned providers.

Integrated electronic health records

We have implemented integrated electronic health records in our outpatient settings. This has required a large financial commitment from our organization and a tremendous work effort from our providers and staff.  We should be very proud of the work that has been done with the goal of providing integrated, seamless and patient-centered care.

The next phase will be installing the system across the remainder of our locations and working to find ways to integrate information flow with other aligned providers.

Enterprise data warehouse

The enterprise data warehouse is necessary to aggregate clinical and financial data that can be used to guide and monitor care initiatives. The data also supports internal and external validation of performance and documentation for financial remuneration from programs like MSSP, meaningful use, and other gauges and reports. Our partnership with Whitecloud Analytics has been invaluable in making this warehouse a functional reality.

Standardized workflows

Standardized work flows through TEAMwork, based on lean principles, are our approach to the elimination of waste and irrational variation and are the key to developing processes that are efficient, effective, and reproducible.

By establishing shared baselines and protocols, we can identify best practices and take them to scale across our organization. Examples include standardized approaches to ambulatory workflows, medication reconciliation, and chronic disease management.

Analytic capabilities

Once we have identified a standardized process with a documented protocol, our data analytics department can assist in determining whether there is an outcome benefit. This is critical, because if we can’t measure outcomes, we can’t reliably improve processes.

Our clinical integration scorecards and population management module are industry-leading capabilities that put St. Luke’s in the forefront of healthcare transformation under the management of Dr. Geoff Swanson working with Whitecloud Analytics. They analyze large amounts of data that can be presented in actionable forms for performance improvement purposes.

Aligned clinical and business incentives

As we develop increasing proficiency in population management, it will be important that we have business model alignment with payers and other stakeholders.

SelectHealth was the first health plan to partner with us in an innovative value-based business model, and we now have risk-sharing relationships with other major payers, including Regence Blue Shield of Idaho and Blue Cross of Idaho.

A major benefit of risked-based contracts is access to financial and claims data, which is necessary for cost-efficient population management. These contractual arrangements are helping us learn the skill sets and competencies necessary to succeed in managing population-based budgets. And while they represent only a small portion of our patient population, we expect rapid growth in this area over the next few years.

Patients’ Experience Places St. Luke’s Among the Nation’s Best

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

I still remember the look on some of the faces of my executive team when I told them several years ago that I wanted St. Luke’s Health System to be a national leader in quality by 2015. Sometimes you just have to set out extremely challenging but attainable goals to push an organization to what it is capable of. That was the case for us.

St. Luke’s Boise and Meridian are the only Magnet hospitals accredited by the American Nurses Credentialing Center in southwestern and south-central Idaho. St. Luke’s Magic Valley has been recognized by The Joint Commission as a top performer on key quality measures for the past three years, a distinction that distinguishes Magic Valley from all others in the state.

St. Luke’s Boise and Meridian were recognized by Consumer Reports as number 1 in Idaho for surgery, and are the only Distinguished Hospital for Clinical Excellence in our part of the state.

And we received wonderful news earlier this week that St. Luke’s Health System has been recognized as one of the top 15 health systems in the country by Truven Health Analytics, a well-respected and independent national healthcare rating agency.

Truven placed St. Luke’s among the top five health systems of our size in the entire United States!

What is so exciting about this, besides achieving our goal (and a year early, besides!) is that this reflects the work we have remained focused on: serving our patients. I also find it very gratifying because it is recognition of our entire health system, not just one hospital within the system.

These results also reflect our efforts to standardize and implement evidence-based care, such as stroke care, sepsis protocols, and blood management across our System. Together as St. Luke’s, we are making a meaningful difference for our communities.

Winners of the 15 Top Health Systems award outperformed their peers by:

  • Saving more lives and causing fewer patient complications.
  • Following industry-recommended standards of care more closely.
  • Making fewer patient safety errors.
  • Releasing patients from the hospital half a day sooner.
  • Scoring better on overall patient satisfaction.

Several things stand out about Truven’s conclusions. I see that, for a very young health system, our locations are operating increasingly well together. Our Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems, or HCAHPS, scores, which gauge patient perspectives, are at the top of the field of health systems. Our patient safety indicators and lengths of stay also were among our particular strengths. And when we look at all the quality and patient experience areas that Truven examined, St. Luke’s was within the top 5 percent of all systems considered.

I have always said that our success in pursuing accountable care and the Triple Aim of better health, better care, and lower costs for the benefit of all those who we are privileged to serve would be measured by objective, independent metrics. Now we can demonstrate that we are a national leader in better care.

Our work continues on improving health and lowering costs, and we intend to remain focused on those aims.

Congratulations to the strong and dedicated St. Luke’s team. This recognition is a testament to the commitment of everyone at St. Luke’s who either cares directly for patients or supports those who do.

I am so proud of the St. Luke’s team. Well done!

Today, we celebrate. Tomorrow, we continue our focus on becoming even better!

David C. Pate, M.D., J.D., is president and CEO of St. Luke’s Health System

Appealing the Court Decision “…health care must change”

Friday, March 7th, 2014

St. Luke’s and Saltzer Medical Group will file a request for a stay pending appeal of the judge’s order to unwind the existing relationship between the two organizations.

This action, which was endorsed by the community-led board of directors for St. Luke’s Health System and the physician leadership of Saltzer Medical Group, allows the organizations to both pursue an appeal and explore a future relationship that is acceptable to the court.

The request for a stay pending appeal allows Saltzer Medical Group and St. Luke’s time to effectively look for ways to improve healthcare delivery without disrupting the Saltzer clinics and their patients.

Our request for a stay pending appeal recognizes, as the court has, that this case presents issues of both exceptional importance and substantial difficulty. All of us involved in this matter have appreciated the candid input and sage counsel we have received and we’re confident this is the right path forward for us and for the patients we serve.

Dr. John Kaiser, president of Saltzer Medical Group and a practicing ob/gyn physician, has been an eloquent and passionate voice in support of Saltzer’s patients throughout the process.

During the fall trial, Dr. Kaiser spoke of the value the relationship with St. Luke’s was bringing to the group’s patients, noting such benefits as improved ability to recruit needed clinicians, improved nursing and patient safety protocols, access to data analytics, and a variety of new services for patients. In the near future, it would have included a significantly more robust electronic health records system.

Because of the relationship, Dr. Kaiser said in court, the group was able to take care of patients it could not previously afford to treat.

The Saltzer’s group’s commitment to its patients and the residents of Canyon County is a commitment shared by our St. Luke’s board of community leaders.

“St. Luke’s is the partner we chose and St. Luke’s is still the partner we want to work with,” Dr. Kaiser said. “They have shown through this process that they are committed to the same ideals and values as we are.”

For St. Luke’s, relationships are important; that’s what our history, spanning more than 100 years, is based on. We will stand by our commitment to Saltzer Medical Group and the residents of Canyon County until we are able to have a positive resolution to this matter, either prevailing on appeal or identifying an alternative that allows Saltzer to remain healthy and continue to serve patients and the community in a positive way.

Our vision is based on a fundamental belief that health care must change. We remain committed to that vision – health care that ensures better outcomes for patients by rewarding providers for improving health and wellness and not just for treating illness.

We will continue to find constructive ways to inspire those positive changes. We owe it to the people of this region.

David C. Pate, M.D., J.D., is president and CEO of St. Luke’s Health System, based in Boise, Idaho. Dr. Pate joined the System in 2009. He received his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and his law degree from the University of Houston Law Center.

Food Drive

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

St. Luke’s and Saltzer are teaming up for a food drive to benefit the Idaho Food Bank

Monday, November 11 – Wednesday, November 27

Please drop your donations at one of these locations:

• 215 E. Hawaii Ave, Nampa
• 9850 W. St. Luke’s Drive, Nampa
• 824 Diamond St., Nampa
• 3165 E. Greenhurst Rd., Nampa
• 3277 E. Louise Drive, 2nd Floor, Meridian

St. Luke’s letter to the community

Tuesday, March 26th, 2013

Dr. Pate, President and CEO of St. Luke's Healthcare System

Thursday, December 20th, 2012

Click to hear was Dr. Pate has to say about today”s court ruling.

Dr. Chenore supports the partnership with St. Luke’s

Thursday, December 20th, 2012

I’m Dr. Mike Chenore. I joined Saltzer Medical Group in 1978 and I’m one of only a few physicians left that had the privilege of working with our founding physician Dr. Joseph Saltzer. The practice and delivery of medicine has changed considerably over the years but never at a faster rate than recently. I support the partnership with St. Luke’s, it will be the best way to ensure the same high quality healthcare our patients have come to expect from Saltzer Medical Group.

Dr. Davidson Supports the Saltzer Partnership with St. Luke’s Health Systems

Monday, December 3rd, 2012

I am Dr. Elaine Davidson: I have been with Saltzer Medical Group for a total of 15 yrs. As health care changes and evolves, we must do so also. Our goal at Saltzer has always been to provide the highest quality of healthcare with an integrated team. I am proud to be part of an organization that has proactively sought a like-minded partner. Partnering with St. Luke’s will help us achieve this goal, providing our patients with easy access to a greater range of resources, further increasing the quality of care that we are able to provide.

Saltzer Physicians Support Partnership with the St. Luke’s Health System

Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

I am Dr. Tom Patterson, I have been a part of the Saltzer family for 14 years and I support the partnership with St. Luke’s. Saltzer is fortunate to have found an organization that shares our vision of providing seamless, integrated healthcare as well as a common culture where the patient comes first. Saltzer and l will still be here, providing care for our patients, only with easier access to key resources that will allow us to provide the best quality care possible. If you have any questions regarding the partnership between Saltzer and the St. Luke’s Health System call 463-3067.

Letter to our Patients

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

To our valued patients:

There has been a lot in the news recently regarding the future partnership between Saltzer Medical Group and St. Luke’s Health System.

We value you as our patient and your needs guide all our decisions.

We would like to clarify a few important points. Saltzer Medical Group will continue to exist and your doctors will be here providing the quality care you have come to expect. Regardless of our hospital affiliation, you will always have the choice of where you and your family will receive your care. Finally you have chosen Saltzer for your care and that is a responsibility we do not take for granted.

Healthcare is evolving and it is necessary to change if we are to continue providing you with the absolute highest quality healthcare you have come to expect from your physicians. After seeking patient input and exploring a wide variety of options, including both major hospitals in the valley, we decided that St. Luke’s aligns most closely with our vision for the future of healthcare in the valley.

During our negotiations with St. Luke’s the desire and need to continue to provide support for the local Nampa hospital now owned by Saint Alphonsus was discussed. St. Luke’s supported the need to provide care for our patients no matter which hospital they chose. All of our physicians, including our pediatricians who currently have privileges at Saint Alphonsus Nampa will continue to practice at that location.

We value you as a patient and look forward to caring for you and your family for many years to come.

If you have any questions regarding the partnership between Saltzer and the St. Luke’s Health System please call 463-3067.


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