• Article
  • November 5, 2019

Pediatric Hospital Leaders Explore Challenges in Health Care

Children’s hospital leaders gathered at  the Annual Leadership Conference to discuss strategy and examine challenges in health care.

Part of what makes progress possible in health care is the sharing of successes, failures and ideas. Leaders in pediatrics from 127 hospitals gathered Nov. 4-6 in Phoenix for the Annual Leadership Conference to present, network and discuss many of the challenges children’s hospitals are exploring to improve. Topics at the event ranged from value-based care, partnerships, Medicaid, telehealth and behavioral health. Attendees chose from 41 sessions and 15 posters focusing on those issues.

Alternative types of care for behavioral health patients

Cohen Children’s Medical Center and Dayton Children’s Hospital discussed their approaches to addressing patients’ urgent behavioral and mental health needs.

Cohen Children’s operates the Behavioral Health Urgent Care Center and created a model of support that helped decrease emergency department (ED) volume and inpatient admissions by about 10%.

Since many adolescents who attempt suicide present to the ED, the Behavioral Crisis Center at Dayton Children’s designed an alternative model of care. The model allows mental health professional to treat patients who do not need medical care without involving a physician.

Moving to value

The progression toward value-based care (VBC) in pediatrics is happening at a varied pace. Sandy Melzer, M.D., executive vice president, Networks and Population Health, Seattle Children’s, described key drivers of VBC and present a national perspective. He discussed case studies that illustrated experience with pediatric clinically integrated networks, integration with adult systems, Medicaid risk, and VBC for specific populations.

Leveraging technology

Pediatric hospitals are trying to answer the increasing demand for specialty care. Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin collaborated with Project CORE (Coordinating Optimal Referral Experience) to help meet the demand and implemented eConsults. The new care delivery tool is embedded in the electronic medical record and can better align primary and specialty care providers.

Specialty telephone consultation is often not measured or considered valuable. Children’s Hospital Colorado developed a pediatric specialist phone consultation program for referring providers that captures the volume and time intensity of the non-income generating work.

Mark your calendar for the 2020 Annual Leadership Conference, Nov. 2-4 in Tampa, Florida. Send questions or comments.