Swedish Medical Center (Swedish), the largest non-profit health provider in the Greater Seattle area, has deployed Tableau Software (NYSE: DATA) to understand and communicate care provider and hospital performance across a number of areas. After implementing Tableau as its primary enterprise-wide analytics platform, the healthcare provider is driving improvements in quality, improving patient experience and making strides to consistently improve in other areas.
Understanding, sharing and ultimately improving performance measures has always been deeply important to Swedish. This ongoing effort has become an even higher priority as healthcare moves more aggressively to value-based reimbursement models. Under these new models, organizations will face reduced payments if they miss targets for factors such as readmission rates, patient experience and other performance measures.
Swedish had been trying to track and communicate performance measures on these and other metrics, but needed to find a way to do so more effectively, reach a larger audience, do it for less money—and tie these efforts into driving organization-wide performance improvement.
“Different groups in the organization were using spreadsheets to gather and organize re-admissions data, and it was very time consuming for analysts and managers. Collecting all the data and trying to get good reports took time away from more valuable tasks. Everyone from the CEO to the managers thought there was a better way to solve this problem,” says David Delafield, Chief Financial Officer of Swedish Medical Group, a division of the Swedish organization.
Swedish also sent patient satisfaction surveys to more than 15 percent of its patients each year, but it lacked a centralized way to share the results. In addition to preparing for value-based reimbursement, Swedish wanted to improve other areas like operating room efficiency, physician engagement and financial performance.
In late 2012, Swedish deployed Tableau. It’s quickly moving towards using Tableau as its primary enterprise-wide performance analysis and reporting platform.
“I think this simplification at low cost is going to be a really important foundation for Swedish to meet strategic goals. Everyone—operating room surgeons, medical directors, hospital administrators—over time will funnel to this same spot, across the Hospitals and the medical group,” says Delafield. “Everyone involved has done a great job.”
“While data has always been important to health care, new models are requiring organizations to reprioritize the way they understand and communicate their information,” said Elissa Fink, Chief Marketing Officer at Tableau Software. “At the same time, non-profits like Swedish are challenged to be fiscally responsible. Tableau can help to make data more transparent without breaking the bank.”
Founded in 1910, Swedish is the largest non-profit health provider in the Greater Seattle area. It is comprised of five hospital campuses (First Hill, Cherry Hill, Ballard, Edmonds and Issaquah); ambulatory care centers in Redmond and Mill Creek; and Swedish Medical Group, a network of more than 100 primary care and specialty clinics located throughout the Greater Puget Sound area. In addition to general medical and surgical care – including robotic-assisted surgery – Swedish is known as a regional referral center, providing specialized treatment in areas such as cardiovascular care, cancer care, neuroscience, orthopedics, high-risk obstetrics, pediatric specialties, organ transplantation and clinical research. For more information, visit www.swedish.org, www.swedishcares.org, www.facebook.com/swedishmedicalcenter, or www.twitter.com/swedish.
About Providence Health & Services
Providence Health & Services is a not-for-profit Catholic health care ministry committed to providing for the needs of the communities it serves – especially for those who are poor and vulnerable. In 2012, Providence affiliated with Swedish Health Services, expanding both organizations’ ability to carry out their individual missions. With this affiliation, the combined scope of services includes 32 hospitals, 350 physician clinics, senior services, supportive housing and many other health and educational services. The health system employs more than 64,000 people across five states – Alaska, California, Montana, Oregon and Washington – with its system office located in Renton, Washington. In 2011, Providence provided more than $651 million in community benefit, including nearly $204 million in free and discounted care for those who could not afford to pay for care. Providence Health & Services continues a tradition of caring that the Sisters of Providence began more than 155 years ago. In 2011, Swedish provided more than $145 million in community benefit in Western Washington. Together, Providence and Swedish are working to improve quality, increase access and reduce the cost of care in all of the communities they serve. For more information, visit www.providence.org.
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