Accreditation

Surveyors trace patients while hospital traces surveyors

Briefings on Accreditation and Quality, February 1, 2005

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One of the greatest anxieties for survey coordinators on survey day is not knowing where surveyors are at all times, especially when they're on the floors tracing patients.

While anticipating six surveyors for a week-long visit at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in December 2004, Kristy Walker, MBA, associate director of clinical applications, wondered if the hospital could "trace" surveyors in real-time using Microsoft SharePointT, a software product already in use for other projects at the 783-bed facility in Iowa City.

SharePoint is a Windows product like Word, but it allows multiple users to edit a file at once. It also functions like an intranet, so the hospital uses it to centrally store documents, such as agendas, contracts, and schedules. Walker says it's as simple to use as GoogleT. And on survey day, it was used as a global positioning device to track surveyors in the hospital.

"Kristy saw the crossover in application," says JCAHO coordinator Debbie Thoman, RHIA, CHP, about SharePoint. "We had a tough survey, but it would have been a heck of a lot tougher if we hadn't had [the software]."

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