“In today’s interconnected and complex healthcare environment, an EMS leader must understand when and how to collaborate, both within the organization and with outside partners.”
Last month, EMS1.com published “The State of Collaboration in EMS” white paper, to help inform EMS leaders about the importance of and tips for collaboration within their own organizations and with outside entities.
One region featured in the white paper was Colorado Springs, CO. The region was struggling to connect the more than twelve fire and EMS organizations and five hospitals (who are part of two larger hospital systems), particularly when trying to communicate key information for time sensitive emergencies. The feature in the white paper discusses how EMS leaders in the area were able to unite all care teams, regardless of the entities they worked for, around a common goal of improving quality of care for patients in the community by reducing delays due to miscommunication.
According to the white paper, Dr. Stein Bronsky, MD, Medical Director for the Colorado Springs Fire Department and the local AMR system said “Recognizing that this was a system problem, not an EMS problem, local EMS and fire department leaders sat down with members of the stroke and STEMI teams from both hospitals. Although wary at first, the competing hospital systems soon recognized that finding a regional solution would benefit both hospitals, and, most importantly, all patients.”
Today, almost all EMS providers in the area use Pulsara to more quickly and transparently communicate crucial patient information to the hospitals. This effort, as the white paper points out, has been successful largely because the Colorado Springs EMS leadership had already worked to build the relationships and environment necessary for collaboration around a common interest: the patient.
What could EMS leaders in your area accomplish for patients if your teams were more focused on collaboration and less on competition?