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Assembly outlines VUMC clinical enterprise goals

Sep. 13, 2012, 8:30 AM

Jeff Balser, M.D., Ph.D., discusses future goals during Tuesday’s Clinical Enterprise Leadership Assembly in Langford Auditorium. (photo by Susan Urmy)

With the continued dedication and hard work of staff and faculty, Vanderbilt University Medical Center managed to surpass financial goals for the fiscal year that concluded June 30.
This success, however, is tempered by anticipated reductions to health care reimbursement, per unit of service, from government and commercial payers.

That was part of the message delivered at the Fall 2012 Clinical Enterprise Leadership Assembly. About 800 managers and faculty met Tuesday morning in Langford Auditorium to review the organization’s performance for fiscal 2012 and learn about goals for the new fiscal year.

The speakers included Jeff Balser, M.D., Ph.D., vice chancellor for Health Affairs and dean of the School of Medicine, and C. Wright Pinson, MBA, M.D., deputy vice chancellor for Health Affairs and CEO of the Vanderbilt Health System.

They told the group the Medical Center will need to continue to consolidate recent cost reduction efforts while expanding programs in innovation aimed at preventing episodes of acute care and reducing overall health care costs. The intention is to position VUMC to accept reimbursement for results from care rather than from a fee-for-service model.

Balser and Pinson punctuated their presentations with stories about teams that have achieved marked improvements:

• Teams at Vanderbilt University Hospital are improving prevention of respiratory arrest for patients with known sleep apnea.

• The Emergency Department at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt has reduced length of stay by 40 percent (over three years) and reduced cost per visit by 8 percent (over two years).

• The Vanderbilt Health Plan has kept health care costs per employee flat since fiscal year 2010.

• Concerted effort by 10 South Renal Transplant and Dialysis allowed this inpatient group to slash job turnover to zero in fiscal year 2012.

• The Occupational Health Clinic has markedly improved its patient satisfaction scores.

• By focusing on the waiting room experience of patients and families, Pediatric Speech-Language Pathology and the Center for Childhood Deafness (a dual clinic) is achieving top patient satisfaction for this area of service.

Pinson provided performance data for last year’s clinical enterprise goals while detailing goals for the current year. Goals are divided across the five pillars: people, service, quality, innovation and growth/finance.

Facility cleanliness is a new service goal for fiscal year 2013.

Two pilot programs will help VUMC test a global health care payment model (as opposed to payment per unit of service). One project involves disease management for children covered by the Vanderbilt Health Plan, and the other involves aortic valve replacements for Medicaid patients.

A new level of clinical decision support is coming to outpatient areas with the adoption of a system called VOOM (Vanderbilt Outpatient Orders Management).

A new innovation program called Integrated Presence will make it easier for providers to get critical patient information.

VUMC will try to build on its recent success in reducing labor costs through employee attrition.
Pinson briefly outlined the steps that managers and teams should take to help achieve organizational goals. More information is available from the elevate website (employee login required).

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