Team-Tested Practices

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4 health care workers wearing blue scrubs in a busy emergency room hallway

Nurses need to avoid distractions in order to give their full attention to patients.

When Teams Come Together, Good Things Happen

Emergency Department nurses work at a fast pace and need to stay focused. Constant interruptions can affect patient care. Nurses at the Sunnyside Medical Center in the Northwest realized they were getting interrupted frequently by the lab with test result notifications. Nurses worked with the lab staff to address this issue. Through a series of tests of change, they streamlined notifications for non-urgent test results. The result: fewer interruptions, saving 5 hours per month.

Here's What Worked

  • Using secure chat instead of phone calls or a voice-controlled, wearable communication device to notify nurses about non-urgent lab results
  • Welcoming Emergency Department staff to the lab to meet colleagues, see processes and explain testing systems to help foster relationships and a better understanding of the work
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