Patient Handovers, Recorded Discharge Instructions Key to Improved Care Transitions

Patient Handovers, Recorded Discharge
Instructions Key to Improved Care Transitions

For two healthcare organizations, care transitions began to improve when they focused less on readmissions data and more on their patients.

Retooled patient handovers — a subtle but significant shift in terminology from 'patient handoff' — and recorded discharge instructions were two strategies for managing care transitions, an area key to reducing readmissions and healthcare costs, and improving patient care and satisfaction.

During Care Transition Management: Strategies for Effective Patient Handoffs, a 60-minute HIN webinar on April 24th, now available for replay, Joshua Brewster, director of care management at Regions Hospital, a HealthPartners hospital, and Cheryl Bailey, vice president of patient care services at Cullman Regional Medical Center, shared these strategies and more, all of which have led to impressive results.

In case you missed this webinar, you still have a chance to watch this highly-rated program.

Register to view the conference today or order your training DVD or CD:

Care Transition Management: Strategies for Effective Patient Handoffs

By focusing on the patient and the handoff process, Minnesota’s Regions Hospital has watched its readmission rates decrease from over 11 percent in 2009 to 9.5 percent for all patients and achieve readmission rates for 2012 that are better than its expected results, as predicted by modeling outside of the organization, says Brewster.

And Cullman Regional Medical Center's award-winning "Good to Go" recorded hospital discharge resulted in a 15 percent decline in readmission rates for patients who received recorded discharge instructions and a 62 percent increase in HCAPS satisfaction scores.

For both Brewster and Bailey, their strategies began by paying attention to the patient. “We noticed our patients weren’t listening to their discharge instructions, and their caregivers were being left in the dark,” says Bailey. So began the seed for CRMC’s award-winning “Good to Go” program, where nurses began recording their patients’ discharge instructions. One of five winners of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Transitions to Better Care video contest, the idea was simple but effective: when patients were about to leave the hospital, their nurse would inform them that they were going to record their discharge instructions, and would share them afterwards via the phone and computer.

You can "attend" this program right in your office and enjoy significant savings — no travel time or hassle; no hotel expenses. It’s so convenient! Invite your staff members to watch the conference. We will send you a DVD or CD-ROM of the conference proceedings or a link to our web site with a username and password. You can log in and view the program right from your computer — any time of the day or night, whenever convenient for you and your colleagues — and benefit from the archived recording of the conference, including the Q&A period.

You'll get to listen to the question and answer session to hear: how to use real-time date to help reduce readmissions, communication techniques at discharge and post-discharge to reduce gaps in care and patient targeting and engagement in care transition management.

To register for the on-demand re-broadcast of Care Transition Management: Strategies for Effective Patient Handoffs or order the training DVD or CD-ROM, please visit:

I hope you find it useful.


Melanie Matthews
Executive Vice President
The Healthcare Intelligence Network