University Hospitals is an academic health system in Cleveland, Ohio with 2,240 beds, 128 ORs, and 150,000 surgeries performed annually.

In 2017, the system undertook an ambitious initiative to improve quality while saving $400 million over five years. In the perioperative department specifically, they were given goals to increase surgical volume, increase the number of complex cases performed at the main campus, and better utilize their operating rooms. University Hospitals partnered with Hospital IQ to help achieve these objectives.

We recently sat down with perioperative leadership at University Hospitals to hear directly from them the impact they’ve seen since implementing Hospital IQ’s Perioperative solution.

You can watch the on-demand video here, but we’ll recap the highlights.

Accelerating Block Availability and Transparency with Hospital IQ

Using Hospital IQ, University Hospitals has made huge strides in achieving their goals. They’ve improved OR utilization by 3% in their main campus, Cleveland Medical Center, and 5% overall, and have increased capacity at outpatient centers through a decanting process; shifting lower acuity cases to these centers while opening up more capacity for complex surgeries at the main campus.

They’ve also improved their turnover times; in a high acuity OR setting, turnover time has decreased from over an hour to “45-50 minute turnovers on a regular basis” according to Dan Towarnicke, VP of Perioperative Services.

Hospital IQ has also helped UH build a staffing model. Using staff planning tools, perioperative leadership are able to see the impact of proposed staffing changes and streamline the staff assignment process.

Overall, managers at University Hospitals can now spend more time improving efficiency instead of manually calculating metrics. With the help of Hospital IQ, block availability and transparency has become an integral part of University Hospital’s culture.

Improving Surgeon Access to ORs

In early 2019, University Hospitals expanded their partnership with Hospital IQ by implementing our new Surgeon Access module in their Cleveland Medical Center. This module gives surgeons increased access to ORs through an “OpenTable-like” experience where they can easily find and request OR time. Additionally, this module provides surgeons with release recommendations for blocks that will likely go unused, which promote the early release of block time, giving other surgeons adequate to book cases into it, increasing both case volume and room utilization.

With Hospital IQ, University Hospitals is “proactively utilizing our ORs better by putting transparency of the blocks in the OR into the surgeons hands so they can look at opportunities in the future.” according to Dr. Joseph Sabik, Chair of Surgery.

To date, they have proactively released over 2,000 block hours with an average lead time of 13.2 days and have accommodated over 400 surgeries in those released blocks.

Bottom Line Results

By October of 2019, as a result of the operational changes and additional case volume, UH’s perioperative department improved its direct contribution margin to the hospital by $22 million annually.

For further information on University Hospitals’ transformation using Hospital IQ, check out their case study and video.



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