23 Feb Gunderson Lutheran Implements Instrument Management Systems
LaCrosse, Wis.- Gundersen Lutheran Health System is reducing surgery delays and controlling instrument and staff costs by automating the management of its surgical instruments and trays by using a new surgical instrument management system from St. Paul, Minn.- based Lawson Software.
Gundersen Lutheran operates a teaching hospital with 325 licensed beds and one of the nation’s largest group medical practices, community clinics, eye clinics and pharmacies. It has more than 5,500 employees and serves residents of western Wisconsin, northeastern Iowa and southeastern Minnesota.
Before the implementation, Gundersen Lutheran lacked an efficient way to track instrument trays and locations in real-time. It also relied on manual tray assembly instructions and count sheet management. Using advanced bar-coding, wireless and Internet technologies, Lawson Surgical Instrument Management has automated these paper-based processes and enabled Gundersen Lutheran to help ensure the right instruments are available when and where they are needed.
“We needed a system that would help us track and report on instrument exceptions so we could better serve O.R. staff and our patients,” said Jan Jarvinen, director of Materials Management at Gundersen Lutheran Health System. “A key benefit of the Lawson solution is the ability to update count sheets electronically, eliminating the paper trail to the O.R. It’s also enabled us to significantly reduce the time needed to train instrument processing staff.”
Gundersen Lutheran implemented the Lawson solution as part of an internal quality improvement initiative. The main challenge it faced was convincing staff from multiple departments of the application’s time and cost-saving capabilities. To secure employee buy-in, Gundersen Lutheran ran a pilot of the application. The pilot program’s efficiency and productivity improvements led to a hospital-wide rollout. Today, Gundersen Lutheran staff interacts with Lawson Surgical Instrument Management using computer workstations on their network or handheld devices in a completely wireless environment.
Later this year, Gundersen Lutheran plans to extend the Lawson solution to its new ambulatory center, which serves 35 clinic areas. The broad deployment and valuable information captured will enable Gundersen Lutheran to optimize its instrument inventory levels and more effectively manage repair and replacement costs.
“Lawson Surgical Instrument Management extends enterprise resource optimization into the O.R., enabling hospitals to better manage instruments and trays for improved patient care,” said Angie Franks, Lawson director of healthcare market development. “As a leader in providing innovative technology to the healthcare industry, we’re committed to helping healthcare organizations achieve tangible financial value through premier software and services.”
Gundersen Lutheran also currently uses Lawson’s Financials, Human Resources and Supply Chain Management for Healthcare Suites.