Local Innovations in Care Presented to House Health Committee

Members of the Arizona House Health Committee chaired by Rep. Heather Carter heard presentations on innovations in patient care, education and research at Scottsdale Healthcare and John C. Lincoln Health Network during a recent hearing at the state capitol.

Committee members and others heard about advance practice nurse education through the CMS Graduate Nurse Education Demonstration at Scottsdale Healthcare, deploying former medics to reduce readmissions through the John C. Lincoln Transition Coach Program, and groundbreaking cancer research through the Scottsdale Healthcare Research Institute.

Legislators appeared impressed with each of the programs, asking for additional information and commenting on the programs’ positive impact for Arizona residents.

Speakers included Melanie Brewer, director, Nursing Research, Scottsdale Healthcare; Teri Pipe, dean, College of Nursing and Health Innovation, Arizona State University; Nathan L. Anspach SVP & CEO, John C. Lincoln Accountable Care Organization; John Lees, DO, John C. Lincoln Transition Coach Services; Mark A. Slater, vice president, Research, Scottsdale Healthcare; and Michelle Pabis, executive director, Government Relations, Scottsdale Lincoln Health Network.

Scottsdale Healthcare is the only Arizona hospital and one of five in the United States participating in a national demonstration for training advanced practice nurses (APRNs). The program supports clinical training of more than 900 nurse practitioners and clinical nurse specialists, said Brewer.

APRNs are learning skills needed to provide primary care, preventive care, transitional care and chronic care management to help meet the need for more primary care practitioners.

Training is provided at Scottsdale Healthcare hospitals in partnership with the nursing schools at Arizona State University, University of Arizona, Northern Arizona University and Grand Canyon University, as well as community-based care organizations representing settings across the state.

The transition coach program at John C. Lincoln uses former military medics and corpsmen to care for designated Medicare patients. Transition coaches have produced significant savings for program participants, reducing Medicare patient hospital readmission rates, according to Anspach.

Cancer research through collaborations with the Scottsdale Healthcare Research Institute and Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center Clinical Trials, a partnership with TGen, and others enables patients to find innovative care and treatments close to home, said Slater.

Examples include a recent study that showed breast cancer patients do better when their treatment is guided by molecular profiling, a new rapid cancer detection program that helps physicians make timely decisions on a treatment’s effectiveness, and expedited approval of new treatments used for the first time in the world at the Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center at Scottsdale Healthcare.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved several new drugs that were studied at Scottsdale Healthcare. Erivedge, a treatment for advanced basal cell carcinoma, was approved in 2012, and Abraxane, for patients with advanced pancreatic cancer, was approved in 2013.

Scottsdale Healthcare recognized for energy efficiency

Scottsdale Healthcare’s continuing investment in energy efficiency is paying off, with Arizona Public Service Co. recognizing the local nonprofit hospital system for reduced energy use.

An upgrade to the heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems at the Scottsdale Healthcare Greenbaum Surgery Center last fall resulted in a significant reduction in energy needs and earned a $31,314 rebate from APS, said Dan Evans, facilities manager at Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Medical Center, where the surgery center is located.

The APS Solutions for Business Program offers rebates based on how much energy may be saved through energy efficient equipment as well as efficiency built into system design, according to Evans.

Scottsdale Healthcare Thompson Peak Hospital also has earned recognition for reducing energy use during peak periods.

Scottsdale Healthcare has several other ongoing sustainability programs including:

•    Early adoption of LED lights, which last longer and use 20% less energy.

•    Printing reduction, saving more than 3 million pieces of paper during the last fiscal year.

•    Recycling of paper, plastic, cardboard, metal, medical sharps and computer parts.

•    On-site document shredding, with more than 290 tons of paper recycled in FY2012.

Valley Metro’s Clean Air Campaign Awards named Roman Kludka, a coordinator in Scottsdale Healthcare’s Information Technology department, the Outstanding Bus Commuter for greater Phoenix. Kludka has logged more than 70,000 miles commuting by bus over 14 years. He’s also covered 14,000 miles walking, for a grand total of 84,000 miles.