Creating a seamless health care experience with Integrated Care Coordinators
As we continue to see an increase in patients with complex health care needs, excellence in care coordination has become essential to creating the best possible outcomes. In 2015, hospital discharge planners and CCAC care coordinators at Etobicoke General Hospital became part of a pilot to integrate their roles into one.
Instead of working with two different people to help facilitate their discharge, patients now work with one integrated care coordinator. This new role is a single point of contact that supports patients through their discharge and return home, streamlining their experience and smoothing transitions. This approach has led to better communication between unit teams, fewer duplications and handoffs between care providers, increased collaboration and enhanced information sharing at transition points.
Integrated care coordination is also having a positive impact on how quickly patients move through the hospital. The acute care length of stay (LOS) was reduced by half a day, unplanned readmission rates have decreased and the alternate level of care (ALC) rate is well below the hospital’s target. Patient satisfaction is also up as 89 per cent of patients say that they have a clear understanding of CCAC services and resources before they return home.
Due to this early success, the pilot has been extended and the experience has been submitted to Accreditation Canada as a leading practice and is being considered for expansion to Brampton Civic Hospital.