Case Study - Wake Forest Baptist Health
Servicing residents in over 20 countries, the flow of patients and staff through Wake Forest Baptist Health’s almost 200 buildings can be overwhelming. To provide the best care to patients while keeping staff productivity and morale high, the medical center needed a patient flow solution that could keep up the pace, all day, every day.
The traditional patient check-in process wasn’t working for the clinics of Wake Forest Baptist Health. “There were long lines, and lots of stress on the front desk staff,” says Jacob Grant, a senior planner at Wake Forest. “The wait times were definitely a pain point.”
Those long lines were also a pain for patients—literally. Many of the clinics treat patients with limited mobility that makes standing for long periods of time difficult. Plus, patients were often intimidated by the long lines and the chaos in the lobby, recalls Suzanne Coetzer, a senior clinical project manager with Wake Forest's Information Technology Services (ITS).
Checking in is unavoidable, but the health system was seeking a better process. Their search ended with Q-nomy's Q-Flow, delivered to Wake Forest Baptist Health by ACF Technologies.
Downtime, delays, and lengthy staff training sessions often seem par for the course with software implementations. Grant and Coetzer were relieved to find out that wasn’t the case with Q-Flow. Q-Flow’s simplicity assures that essential staff won’t be waylaid with hours of training. “It takes staff 10 -20 minutes, if that, to get up to speed,” says Coetzer.
Because each clinic at Wake Forest Baptist functions as its own business unit, each management team contacts ITS regarding software needs. Occasionally, a clinic requests an alternate queue management solution, but “as soon as they talk to the staff who already use Q-Flow, and see the product for themselves, they’re completely sold,” says Coetzer.
Results and Benefits
Today, over 30 of the center’s multispecialty clinics depend on Q-Flow to streamline patient flow and keep the clinics running smoothly. Self-service check-in and automated wait time alerts decreased patient wait times and contributed to calmer, less stressful lobby environments. Metrics available within Q-Flow have also led to more efficient resource allocation, contributing to cost savings.
Q-Flow also allows users to track a variety of metrics. At Wake Forest Baptist, tracking peak times and patient volume has been especially helpful. “This reporting has become really critical,” emphasized Coetzer. Customizing staffing levels according to peak times reduces overhead costs, and because there is better coverage during busy times, staff morale and productivity has increased.
Q-Flow metrics have also helped make the case for hiring much-needed staff. Clinic managers can now back up requests for new hires with data. “Saying you need staff versus showing the actual volume and flow really provided the proof that certain clinics were understaffed,” Coetzer explains.
“I have never been so impressed at how organized the clinics are. It is so efficient… This product basically sells itself. Q-Flow has thought of everything” — Suzanne Coetzer, Sr. Clinical Project Manager, Information Technology Services, Wake Forest Baptist Health