4 Strategies Small Hospitals Can Use To Decrease Length Of Stay

  • Healthcare Management - Medical Marketing
  • medical management - Rural Hospitals
  • March 7, 2022

To lower length of stay and maximize medical resources, small hospitals can switch to electronic records, limit antibiotics and other ways.

What’s Good For The Patient

Lengthy hospital stays increase the risk of infection in patients while limiting hospital availability for medical practitioners. Some research suggests that the length of stay (LOS) per patient is a vital indicator of the efficiency of hospital management. To maximize total support provided to the community, small hospitals can lower LOS by optimizing available healthcare services. By using electronic health records, managing antibiotics per patient, removing barriers to discharge and robust outpatient programs, smaller care centers can efficiently provide medical resources to numerous patients.

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Getting online streamlines operations

While many hospitals have transitioned to online records, some care centers in underserved areas have yet to make the shift. Electronic records require an initial investment but allow doctors to scrutinize hospital processes that affect the overall LOS. A recent study notes that future improvements in processing and monitoring may allow more efficient management of the LOS of inpatients.

Go easy on antibiotics

Another significant influence in lowering LOS is managing the number of antibiotics administered per patient. Many experts suggest that overuse of antibiotics has led to a worldwide increase in antimicrobial resistance. More resistance in patients means higher infections and potential complications, along with more extended hospital stays. Research recommends limiting antibiotic prescriptions in inpatient care, implementing delayed antibiotic prescribing strategies to slow overuse.

Removing barriers promotes shorter hospital stays

To ensure lower LOS, hospitals must commit to removing barriers that keep patients from an expedient stay. Using electronic records, healthcare professionals can identify delays causing unnecessary hospital stays. With access to comprehensive data, doctors can limit overall time wasted in testing, receiving medication and a variety of other factors.

Reducing boomerang patients

Healthcare experts recommend a data-driven outpatient program to support a healthy patient transition. Since high readmission rates often result in penalties from Medicare and Medicaid services, hospitals must shrink rates of returning patients. A team of healthcare professionals assigned to monitor specific patients in an outpatient capacity eases the transition from hospital to home. Proactive monitoring of a discharged patient allows doctors to catch threats early, lowering the chance of readmission.

Lowering LOS promotes profitability as a small healthcare facility

The shorter the hospital stay, the better the hospital. Minimizing LOS not only improves a care facility’s bottle line but maximizes the medical resources available to the community. With online records, practitioners can process patient information quickly, resulting in faster examinations and comprehensive medical history. Small hospitals can monitor patients in real-time by tapping into data-driven insights, allowing for earlier threat detection and fewer boomerangs.

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