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Canton-Potsdam Hospital Streamlines Total Joint Replacement

The decision to undergo total joint replacement is difficult for patients, often causing concern and anxiety about the benefits of the operation, navigating the healthcare system, and quality of life post-discharge. Appreciating this trepidation, Canton-Potsdam Hospital of the St. Lawrence Health System developed its Orthopedic Nurse Navigator Program.

Implementation began with support from key stakeholders, including providers, practice management, nursing, support staff, hospital administration, home care agencies, and skilled nursing facilities as well as patients and their families. For each surgery, a nurse navigator is assigned and tailors a program to meet the unique needs of each patient. Nurse navigators serve as the sole individual to coordinate all aspects of the surgical process: pre-operative, inpatient, and post-discharge, ensuring seamless transitions of care, enhancing the overall quality of care, and patient-family experience.

After implementation, the surgical site infection rate decreased from 1.7 per 1,000 patient days in 2016 to 0.5 in 2017. Readmission rates (<31 days) decreased from 8.3% in the first quarter of 2017 to 0.0% for the rest of the year. Additionally, no-show rates in the orthopedic practice decreased from 5.38% in 2016 to 2.54% in 2017.

For more information, contact Jackie Scanlon, Director, Patient Safety, Canton-Potsdam Hospital, at (315) 244-2784 or at jscanlon@cphospital.org.