Process Improvement

Intermountain Healthcare: Using Leapfrog Safety Grade Certifications to Improve Medication Safety

Doctor examining a child on her mothers lap.

Intermountain’s quest for better health and high quality care at more affordable costs is the driving force behind Intermountain‘s commitment to truly transform healthcare across the country. Intermountain Healthcare is uniquely positioned in the nation to provide technological advancements and innovative solutions that help meet the demand for high quality care at a sustainable cost with a long history of excellence in healthcare technology & innovation, development and to find solutions that help patients and those who provide care and to improve care and outcomes for patients.

The challenge discussed in this case study: In 2016, Intermountain Healthcare hospitals earned a lack-luster two A’s, four B’s and four C’s in Leapfrog’s hospital safety ratings. Leapfrog is a nonprofit watchdog organization that prioritizes a culture of safety and the adoption by hospitals of evidence-based safety practices. As part of the evaluation Leapfrog requires hospitals to conduct a scenario-based test of their CPOE.

The initial experiences with the CPOE test in 2018 revealed significant opportunities to improve how the EHR flagged medication orders and prompted responses from the ordering provider. A challenge became how to improve medication safety for our patients without increasing alert fatigue and provider burnout. Improvement in letter grades became a distant third-place consideration.

In this full case study, Intermountain Healthcare shares their implementation overview, and the overall impact on patient safety – with reduced order errors and the lessons learned throughout.

One sentence that encapsulates the experience as a whole:

Large integrated healthcare systems can utilize a multidisciplinary team and make incremental, data driven, continuous improvement changes to lead the way in HER configuration to promote sustainable and supportive provider work environments while increasing patient safety.