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A One-Stop Nursing Shop for Hospital Best Practices

Penn Medicine’s easy-to-use nursing guidance in Epic helps improve standards of care

As patients are admitted to the hospital, nurses follow a checklist of best practices to help keep patients healthier, such as checking for the presence of MRSA and giving vaccines. Less than a year after Penn Medicine launched one-stop-shop decision support to guide nurses through these best practices, MRSA screening increased 17%, and PCV13 pneumococcal vaccines quadrupled.

When a patient is admitted at one of Penn’s six hospitals, a single advisory guides nurses through a variety of different best practices based on information in the chart. The advisory helps make sure these steps are standard for every patient. Nurses are guided to give pneumococcal and flu vaccines if they’re needed, check for the presence of MRSA, and use anti-viral wipes to prevent central line infections. Nurses also test for pregnancy if appropriate to ensure that the patient’s status is up to date before procedures.

The single advisory helps nurses efficiently complete several preventive steps at once, instead of addressing individual advisories during different trips to the patient’s room.

“Nurses have one advisory that contains all the interventions that apply to the patient, which is much easier to follow consistently than many different alerts,” said associate CMIO Colleen Mallozzi, RN. “All of these interventions are important to keep patients healthy. Getting patients vaccinated, making sure we’re caring for pregnant patients appropriately, and protecting patients from infection is something we’re really proud of.”

The project team at Penn Medicine, led by Mallozzi and lead inpatient analyst and nurse David Stabile, received honors for their patient care improvements. Epic community members can learn more from Penn Medicine’s UGM slides and audio on the UserWeb.