How Process Improvement Teams Can Help During the COVID-19 Crisis

Mercy St. Louis shares how their PI Team is helping in this time of crisis. A Vice President of Process Improvement and a Lean Specialist are managing the day-to-day process development, questions fielding, and workflow development for: • Workflow and criteria for COVID-19 testing for physicians and providers • Database and process for notifying physicians and patients of results • Infection control processes and workflows, including PPE standards, education, and electronic mechanism for observations by PPE Evaluation Personnel (PPEEPs) • PPE conservation practices and processes, including monitoring by PPEEPs ensure compliance; supplies inventory updates 2X day • Process for donations of PPE, sources, and resources for emergency backup options, such as handsewn items • Visitor policies and restrictions, including the screening criteria and processes • Patient/Family communication process with passcodes • Ongoing labor pool resource and database process • MD/provider hotlines (ring into Command Center) for vetting testing criteria and process • COVID unit patient placement, maps, and flow • Process for “call ahead” for positive patients coming to the ED after a positive result • Leader and coworker hotlines (ring into Command Center) for vetting FAQs (to relieve Employee Health and Infection Prevention nurses) • Assistance with process/workflows for offsite testing and evaluation sites • Manage daily updates documentation for Leaders group and for daily 3pm call • Monday/Wednesday/Friday 7:45 am webx for larger leaders group communication • Signage creation and lamination, and other visual management for visitors, screening, restrictions, hand hygiene, etc. • Management of vital phone numbers The modified command center is staffed from 7a-7p. In addition to the VP and Lean Specialist, hospital directors serve in the command center for a 6 hour shift from 7a-1p and another from 1p-7p.

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