The goals of the organization are:
1. Standardizing the operating procedure
2. Detecting diversions from the care path and alerting caregivers. 3. Producing exception reports for analysis. Improving record keeping for better patient records and cost analysis 4. Improving the communication between various parties within the care path system Reasons for increased medical costs are patients are staying longer than necessary and receiving more tests and medications than necessary, and highly trained and highly paid personnel are performing work that could be performed by less paid personnel. In order for this kind of a system to function, there must be a database of care path patient information. Constant reference to this database will be needed to access procedural information or to attain information about a particular patient. In addition, a network must be established where all users can access this information from locations within the hospital. This network of terminals, along with a central, standardized database, will allow for easy accessibility of information for all caregivers throughout the path.
Database software will be used to manage the content and flow of information for the Care Path system. This software must be capable of querying the records so individual pieces of information can be accessed for analysis purposes. In addition, the software must be able to produce documents such as exception reports, cost accounting reports, and utilization reports. Such features are necessary in order for the system to add value for Massachusetts General Hospital. Finally, since medical records are confidential, the system must be secure and ensure the integrity of the data.
At a minimum, the users of the new system will be the 8 cardiac surgeons, team of cardiologists, and nurses that are working along the care path. They are the primary and most active caregivers in the care path system....