The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

1996 OPEN FORUM Abstracts

How to Do It Before Someone Does It to You

Susan Y. Parsons, BS,. RRT Wednesday, November 6, 1996

OBJECTIVE: To share the restructuring/redesign experience and process of an 1800 bed two campus, tertiary care facility from a centralized Respiratory Care Department, to a decentralized department, and back to a centralized department. Also, to help attendees understand how to restructure with and without the use of a consulting firm.

Methods: One intensive care unit utilized an assigned work team of ICU personnel to redesign work processes, and crosstrain staff before the consultants arrived. When the consultants arrived six work teams were formed to redesign business for the remainder of the hospital. One facility completed the decentralization of the Respiratory Care Department while the other facility only partially completed this process. This was based on a patient focused care model with Respiratory Care Practitioners being unit based and reporting to Nursing Unit Managers.

Results: The one Intensive Care Unit that redesigned their business by using a team of assigned staff members is still conducting business in the restructured model almost three years later. The redesign model initiated by consultants for the remainder of the hospital began dissolving seventeen months later and within 3 years completely dissolved.

Conclusions: Through the proper methods, evaluations, work team assignments, data collection, crosstraining and activity planning, the successful implementation of a restructured and redesigned Respiratory Care Department can be accomplished. This is very important to the survival of the Profession of Respiratory Care in a Managed Care Environment.

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