Parkland Health & Hospital System Creates One Platform for Hospital Services

About Parkland – At the Forefront of Innovation

Parkland Health & Hospital System is “the foundation for a healthy Dallas.” The safety-net healthcare system operates an 882-bed acute care hospital and an ambulatory surgery center along with more than a dozen outpatient health centers throughout Dallas County.

Parkland is known for innovation. Opened in 2015, the new Parkland Memorial Hospital replaced the vintage 1950s hospital with a state-of-the-art facility that was one of the first  “digital hospitals” built in the United States at the cost of $1.3 billion, with $80 million of that invested in technology. (Dallas Morning News)

One Platform for All Hospital Service Requests

Since the new hospital’s opening, the digital transformation has continued. In 2016, Parkland’s IT team addressed a “call tree” problem.

Nurses used the “call tree,” which meant one list of phone numbers for IT, another for Clinical Engineering, one for Nutrition Services, and so on.

Each department was using a different system for work order management.

Facilities, Clinical Engineering, and other departments had separate TMS Four Rivers installs, while the Asset Management team was using a completely different CMMS software.

Parkland opted for a single-platform solution, one self-service portal or phone number that nurses, doctors, and all care team staff would use to report a facility, medical device, HR, or IT-related issue.

Finding the One-Platform Solution, Nuvolo + ServiceNow

The Clinical Engineering department began looking for an enterprise solution that could scale with their large hospital and be used across the different departments.

At the time, Parkland’s IT department was upgrading to a modern IT service management product, ServiceNow. The Clinical Engineering team selected Nuvolo because it is built on the same NOW platform.

Today, the nurses and all care team staff use the same online self-service portal or call one central number to report an issue. Facilities, Asset Management, Clinical Engineering, Nutrition Services, Pharmacy, Linen Services, and other departments also use the Nuvolo platform.

Centralized Asset Management

Parkland’s centralized asset management team, part of the supply chain division, also uses Nuvolo to onboard all devices. They have no duplicate systems, and one central database facilitates asset inventory data and lifecycle management.

More than 100,000 devices a year come through Parkland’s loading dock. Each device is tagged and has a profile created within Nuvolo. At that point, the device is ready to be delivered to its respective department.

Once delivered, an inspection work order is auto-generated. Each department has access to the tagged and profiled device data directly within the Nuvolo platform.

Clinical Engineering

Parkland’s Clinical Engineering team is responsible for approximately 36,000 of those devices, including the hospital’s most critical medical equipment.

Having a centralized device management database and capturing all equipment maintenance on the same platform enhances work order management and the lifecycle asset management program.

Work Order Management

When a staff member calls the support number, the central support team decides which of the 13 “shops” within the hospital the work order should be assigned to.

When a work order is routed to Clinical Engineering, it’s automatically assigned based on device type to one of the Clinical Engineering divisions: diagnostic imaging, biomedical, or electromechanical.

In addition to automation, Parkland has streamlined work order management by:

  • Creating dashboards for support managers, giving them easy visibility into their team’s performance
  • Measuring performance and balancing out their team’s workloads based on analytics
  • Monitoring work orders against performance goals and ensuring service-level expectations are met

Contract Management

Parkland also uses the Nuvolo contract management capabilities to manage medical devices, including diagnostic imaging equipment and surgical instruments, that require multiple vendor support contracts.

With contracts as part of the single platform solution, they:

  • Manage different vendor contracts with all the associated documentation
  • Set renewal timelines and have relevant data ready for contract negotiations
  • Track vendor performance and return on investment (ROI) for contract justification analysis

Asset Management Lifecycle

Having all device, work order, and contract data on a single platform leads to exceptional device management and reporting—exceptional enough to create an impressive algorithm.

Parkland’s Clinical Engineering team created an algorithm that calculates the equipment replacement date as soon as the equipment is onboarded. This one algorithm ensures critical equipment is replaced on time, contributing to more efficient budgeting for capital equipment.

For example, according to Mark Cooper, a clinical engineer at Parkland, “If Finance asks ‘What does the FY budget look like for capital medical equipment?’, we can send it to them in real-time.”

Additional ways Parkland is using analytics include:

  • Creating Environment of Care (EOC) reports and analysis
  • Using business intelligence to defend headcount and departmental spend
  • Generating financial reports rapidly and providing reports, graphs, or pivot tables for executive review when questions arise