Bed Management in the Healthcare Industry
Bed management or census management is one of the core functions in any healthcare facility. It includes the ability to have a real-time operational awareness of the status of all the beds at the facility and to be able to plan for an efficient use of these beds.
There is a significant amount of information that healthcare facilities track on a daily basis. Bed management majorly includes tracking the following basic information:
1. Bed availability status – the number of available beds on any particular day.
2. Patient arrivals and discharges – the exact dates of arrivals and discharges of a patient
3. Bed allocation status – the duration for which any bed has been blocked for a patient
4. Internal transfers – data of patient transfers within the healthcare facility to account for change in care type
5. Bed and room maintenance status – data corresponding to beds and rooms which are not fit to be allocated to a patient on any particular day.
The above mentioned categories of data are definitely very preliminary in nature and most healthcare facilities need to monitor a lot of granular information in order to function efficiently. Now, tracking this information might not be that difficult for small scale providers but when we consider large healthcare facilities – bed management is definitely a tedious chore!
Bed management issues faced by healthcare facilities
Bed management issues are rampant in majority of the healthcare facilities all over the world and these issues severely impact the productivity at various levels. The pressure of ever-increasing patient demand makes bed management a daily challenge for the healthcare staff. Most healthcare facilities use elaborate spreadsheets for maintaining all the information related to bed management. These spreadsheets are required to be updated multiple times on a daily basis. Now, this might not actually sound very complicated but when the amount of information required to be tracked increases – complications and errors are bound to occur!
The need for an integrated bed management system
Bed management is not a simple task and an integrated bed status system within the facility information system is definitely a need of the hour. A robust and integrated bed management process not only improves patient care, but it also impacts a facility’s financial status. The benefits are innumerable and some of these benefits can be highlighted as follows:
1. Increased productivity and efficiency
2. Reduced delays and waste
3. Improved patient transfer and care coordination data
4. Better predictive planning
5. Shorter bed turnover time and waiting time for patients
6. Better bed assignment and right patient care.
Elixir – Need of the hour
Elixir is the ultimate solution to all the bed management problems! Elixir is a simple yet robust system which very efficiently handles the entire bed management process across multiple facilities and locations. It is built on Salesforce – which makes it entirely customizable. A few of the capabilities of Elixir can be summarized as follows:
1. View detailed facility capacity on a single screen
Elixir helps in viewing the entire facility capacity details on a single screen. The Bed Allocation setup in Elixir gives a detailed view of the entire healthcare facility, different departments, rooms, and beds. This screen includes details about the room type, the bed type, maintenance details and all the other information that is required for appropriate bed assignment to a patient. The user just needs to figure out the right requirements for each patient and simply assign an appropriate bed under the right care in the desired room and department.
2. Real time bed availability status
One of the features of Elixir that is immensely
useful is the Heatmap. The heatmap gives a high level
status of the healthcare facility census. Real-time
bed availability information is marked for
the upcoming week in this heatmap and the user can
very easily have an overview of the entire
facility census based on the bed availability
percentage. This feature is also immensely helpful
for the marketing team as they can ascertain the
best time for dedicated campaigns for getting more
3. Patient arrivals and discharges
Tracking patient arrivals and discharges
on a daily basis is definitely
a tedious task. Elixir solves this problem
by providing patient admissions and
discharge details on a daily calendar.
Apart from the admit and discharge details,
the heatmap also provides details of the bed
that the patient is getting admitted to or
discharged from. Elixir further provides the choice
of having automated or manual discharges which makes the system even more customizable. Elixir sends off real-time notifications to housekeeping teams of newly vacated beds to speed up the bed re-allocation process.
4. Occupancy status dashboards
Elixir captures every granular level of information related to bed management. This information can be used to setup a myriad of useful dashboards in Salesforce which can be used to provide an even better view of entire facility census. As can be seen in the images above, it becomes very easy to track all kinds of occupancy information with the data that Elixir helps in capturing.
5. Maintenance Status
Monitoring the maintenance status of any healthcare facility is of utmost importance.
Patients cannot be assigned to beds or rooms which are not in the right condition. Let’s consider a case in which a patient has been assigned a bed which needs urgent maintenance or a room which needs cleaning (or cannot be allocated due to some other maintenance needs). Without the proper visibility of these maintenance needs – the healthcare staff cannot avoid mismanagement or care process delay. In many cases, this delay can prove to be detrimental for the facility as well as the patient.
With Elixir, these issues can be very easily handled. Elixir helps the healthcare facility in effectively monitoring the overall room and bed maintenance status. It effectively helps in keeping a track of all the rooms and beds which are out of order and cannot be assigned to patients. Elixir also sends real-time notifications to housekeeping teams regarding the overall maintenance status of the healthcare facility. Hence, with the right details at the right time – the process of getting the maintenance completed can be effectively managed without compromising on the overall productivity.
Apart from the above-mentioned aspects, Elixir makes bed management very easy in several other ways as well. Elixir can definitely prove to be the most powerful bed management tool for your healthcare staff.
Elixir Practice Management Suite is a comprehensive solution which consists of four modules which fit rightly into your healthcare business irrespective of your facility size and type. The Elixir Contact Center module helps in managing the entire facility census and the patient intake process while the Elixir EHR solution aims at delivering an end to end seamless patient care experience. The third module is Elixir Billing, and it effectively fetches data from any EHR platform to process medical claims and manages the entire revenue cycle. Elixir Patient Portal is the last module, and it provides an integrated experience for the patients.
Do fill out this contact form if you feel that Elixir will be an asset to your system.