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Small size, big vision

By Philips ∙ Featuring Wye Valley NHS Trust ∙ Feb 28, 2022 ∙ 5 min read

 

Case study

Hospital operations

Optimization services

Wye Valley NHS Trust is one of the smallest NHS Trusts in the UK. Located in a rural part of southwest England, it provides services via Hereford County Hospital and three community hospitals for Herefordshire, with a population of over 190,000, plus 40,000 patients in Mid Wales.

 

  • 80% of the population lives more than five miles from a market town or Hereford.
  • The Trust employs around 3,000 staff.

Case study at-a-glance

Partner

Wye Valley NHS Trust

Challenge

A significant and increasing diagnostic imaging demand, exacerbated by aging equipment and staff shortages

Solution

A Managed Service strategic partnership with Philips oversaw a £2 million radiology service redevelopment program that paved the way for a trust’s vision for the radiology department of the future.

Results

  • MRI patient throughput increased by at least four patients per day
  • Enhanced patient flows in the radiology department
  • 60% of equipment replaced within the first two years
  • >98% system availability achieved across modalities
  • 9/10 overall satisfaction rating

A clinician helps a patient get an MR

In 2018, the Trust’s imaging department was facing mounting challenges:

 

  • A steady increase in demand for imaging modalities through an increase in patients with long-term chronic conditions such as diabetes, obesity, COPD and cancer.
  • The Trust had seen a 10% rise in annual demand for most of its imaging services, including a 50%-60% rise in demand for CT.
  • Staff shortages enhanced by the national shortage of radiographers.
  • A high variability in turnaround times across all of its imaging modalities, especially across MR and ultrasound.
  • Complex workflows placing inordinate pressure on the existing infrastructure.
  • Aging equipment: relying on aging equipment to manage patient data alongside aged PACS and Radiology Information Systems.

A partnership solution that went beyond just changing equipment 

Small in size, yet big in vision, the Trust knew that it needed to optimize its radiology department but simultaneously lay the foundation for the radiology department of the future.

 

To meet the Trust’s objectives, it established a long-term strategic Managed Service partnership with Philips to work together to drive excellence across the radiology service and improve clinical outcomes. “Our partnership with Philips was agreed to partly replace our aged radiology equipment and to improve capacity, but also to engage our staff in ways of improving efficiency,” says Jane Ives, Managing Director of the Trust.

 

Through a process called CoCreate, Philips and the Trust identified several improvement and education projects, and inside the first 12 months, delivered an initial fast-track program to replace essential imaging equipment, optimizing capacity.

 

“Our partnership with Philips was to partly replace our aged radiology equipment and to improve capacity, but also to engage our staff in ways of improving efficiency.”

Jane Ives, Managing Director, the Trust

Service improvement, resources and training

Supporting staff through education and resource management was vital in addressing productivity and meeting the rising patient demand. The partnership looked at how to optimize staff resources through an initial Service Improvement program, designed to address productivity and performance.

 

The MR team at the Trust completed six learn-do training cycles across a 12-week period that focused on mapping value streams, understanding capacity and demand and improving the working and patient environment.

 

  • More than 75 clinical staff trained in LEAN principles to optimize patient flows and efficiency improvements.
  • Workflow optimization pushed productivity up by 5%-10% per year.
  • Staff were more engaged in the improvement process as a result of the program.
  • The Trust will appoint a lead to support ongoing quality improvement for modalities across the imaging department.

Remodeling and redesigning the radiology department

Following on from the fast-track program, a major £2 million radiology service redevelopment program commenced. Philips and the Trust identified solutions to create new workflows to coincide with the replacement equipment in the new department and capitalize on the efficiencies of combining technology, layout and process improvement.

 

During an extensive five-month program, the redevelopment project was completed in stages to ensure continuity of service, with major additional services including MRI and a dedicated interventional suite.

 

The interventional suite was reconfigured and installed into what had previously been several small outmoded and outdated rooms, creating a bespoke clinical area with separate control and generator rooms, as well as building and refurbishing existing ultrasound rooms. The whole refurbishment project was completed on schedule and within budget in mid-March 2020 despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Clinicians consult with partners

Results and benefits to date

Still in its early years, the partnership has already transformed the radiology department both in its physical appearance and service.

 

Key achievements:

 

  • MRI patient throughput increased by at least four patients per day
  • Enhanced patient flows in the radiology department
  • 60% equipment replaced within the first two years
  • >98 % system availability achieved across modalities
  • 9/10 overall satisfaction rating

What is a Managed Service strategic partnership? 

Managed Services is the comprehensive, vendor-neutral Philips solution designed to guide and support you in achieving optimized business outcomes. Working in close partnership as an extension of your team, we go beyond traditional Managed Equipment Services by treating technology as an enabler for transformation. Our flexible agreements are grounded in actionable data insights to support you in making confident investment decisions.  

 

Key benefits:  

 

  • Flexible, integrated, future-proof technology
  • Driving positive change
  • Patient and staff experience
  • Performance management
  • Optimized technology maintenance  
  • Defined total cost of ownership
  • Financial engineering with flexible, cost-effective financing and financial planning models
  • Working in true partnership  

Case study

Small size, big vision

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