What is an Operational Command Center?

Operational Command Centers are some of the newest and most promising solutions for hospital operations, and provide substantial improvements in efficiency. But what exactly does an Operational Command Center do?

Commonly, Operational Command Centers include processes such as analytics, data visibility boards, equipment monitoring, telemetry, and supply chain management.

These Operational Command Centers can commonly be confused with Transitional Care Centers, Transfer Centers, Incident Command Centers, and other third party technology. Despite being similar in name, these other centers cover very different processes.

There is a major difference between Operational command centers, incorporated 3rd party technology, transitional care centers, transfer centers, and incident command centers

Healthcare organizations are reinventing the centralized approach of command centers to provide better patient care more efficiently than ever before. Now more than ever, command centers have become necessary for providers looking for real-time and actionable analytics, remove silos from clinical workflows, and coordinate care more efficiently.

Many health systems face revenue challenges with no real way to identify where the progression of care is breaking down, nor a way to address those issues at an organizational level. Meanwhile, those organizations that have fully implemented a command center report improved efficiency, increased revenue, and enhanced patient safety and satisfaction. In KLAS’ first command center report (2018), 78% of interviewed organizations reported positive financial outcomes.¹


Your Challenges May Include:

Command centers allow hospitals to avoid extra patient days

Avoidable Patient Days

Increase your hospital’s profitability

Profitability

Command centers help to align physicians

Lack of Physician Alignment

Engage with your patients at a greater level

Patient Engagement

Reduce your hospital’s operating costs

Need for Cost Reductions

Recover lost revenue opportunities

Lost Revenue Opportunities


 

Limitations of Most Operational Command Centers

Traditional clinical command centers provide a wealth of data, but no tools to act on. They also are over-centralized, have limited scope, and do not empower your front-line staff.

Most Command Centers never realize their full potential. An Incident Command Center, or Command Center 1.0, serves as a solid base for building a permanent command center. However, these Command Center 1.0s lack the functionality to cement themselves as permanent fixtures in the hospital, and are often removed once their initial purpose is served.

More robust command centers, referred to as Command Center 2.0, contain functions that impact throughput optimization. This is often a result of a combination of specific processes, roles, and technology. But even if your Command Center falls into this category, there is still room for improvement.


Barriers to Implementation and Optimization

Change does not always come easy. Even after your organization decides to move forward with implementing a command center, there are still obstacles to overcome. According to KLAS’s 2021 Command Center report, change management was the most frequently cited barrier to fully optimizing a command center, followed by analytics, integration, and growth management.²

Ensuring that your entire organization is aligned around new technology and processes can be a daunting task, but is necessary in order to get the best possible results from your hospital’s command center.

Change management has been the hardest thing. Before we had the command center, our organization was really siloed. It felt like we were running several hospitals within one building. The command center has brought a lot of different resources and people together and forced them to work together. That approach is very different culturally from what we had before. Even now, getting everyone on board or trying to change anything is very difficult.
— Assistant Administrator of Command Center

Avoid barriers to communication.

By themselves, walls create barriers to communication, barriers to care, and can paralyze users with information overload. In order to effectively collaborate and utilize data, your hospital staff needs access to tools that allow them to closely communicate, methodologies to promote dialogue, and the ability to engage with other employees so that everyone can become active in the care process.


Overcoming the Limitations:

The Hub-and-Spoke Hospital Operating System Featuring Command Center 3.0

Achieve Best Value in Your Command Center

In the Hub-and-Spoke Model created by Care Logistics, the Command Center 3.0, or “hub” works with the local care teams, the “spokes”, to ensure the right information is available to make the most informed decisions at the right time and location. The “spokes” in this system refer to the Emergency Department, nursing units, and diagnostic and procedural areas; all the places where clinical teams directly interact with the patients, their families, and each other. Therefore, they play a pivotal role in the decision-making process and must be empowered with real, actionable information from across the system.

The hub and spoke model serves as a foundation for your entire hospital, and connects your various units to core operations.

With the Hospital Operating System…

When your care teams are aligned, your physicians are more effective

Align care teams to length of stay targets based on diagnoses and condition.

progress patients efficiently throughout your hospital

Progress patients reliably from admission to discharge.

make a perfect schedule for all your patients

Coordinate all patient logistical activities systematically.

command centers grow your hospitals most profitable departments

Grow profitability in diagnostic and other care services.

 

Empower your team with support from our change management experts.

 

Command Center 3.0

The Hub-and-Spoke Hospital Operating System includes a Command Center 3.0. Command Center 3.0 improves upon 1.0 and 2.0 through purpose-built technology and the coordination of services to achieve optimal quality and financial results.

The expanded functionality of Command Center 3.0 includes:

  • Bed management

  • Purpose-built transportation technology

  • Resource prioritization

  • Transfer center

  • Central coordination of diagnostics

  • Facilitates bi-directional communication

Grady Health System’s Command Center 3.0

Grady Health System’s Command Center 3.0


Experts in Change Management

For over 10 years, Care Logistics has worked with hospitals to facilitate process overhauls and train healthcare professionals. Alongside a Command Center 3.0, real-time analytics, and a suite of purpose-built technology, the Hospital Operating System includes a variety of new processes and methodologies. Through a process-first approach, Care Logistics helps align your team from the front-lines to executive leadership prior to new software installation.

Care Logistics does a really good job with change management. They listened to us about the models that we had within the hospital and helped us understand where things integrate and how the vendor could help. We can really adapt things to our own organization, and that is good.
— Director, Surveyed by KLAS ³

How Do Command Centers Affect Patient Flow?

Care Logistics’ Hospital Operating System facilitates bidirectional communication between a care coordinator in the Command Center and the various care coordinators on the floors.

According to KLAS’s Patient Flow report, the Hospital Operating System was one of the top performers included in the Patient Flow category, scoring a 93.2 out of 100 overall. ⁴

Through increased data visibility, improved communication, and heightened visibility to barriers, the Hospital Operating System creates unparalleled efficiency in patient flow.

I love Care Logistics. When we first got the system, I was very excited to see the functionality that was available. The system gives us real-time information and tells us exactly where our patients are. The training was fabulous for helping everyone know what was needed about a patient in real time. I also love the fact that case managers can manage patients according to the board and length of stay. Case managers can also manage the throughput of the patient, including when they need the doctor to come and look at the patient. The tool provides great management from the time the patient hits the admissions board to the time they are out the door.
— Manager interviewed by KLAS ³

Command Centers and Disaster Response

Command Centers are an incredibly valuable piece of infrastructure in the face of crisis and disaster response. In fact, of the participants surveyed by KLAS in their 2021 Command Center Ecosystem report, 97% of respondents said they saw positive impacts from their Command Center in their COVID-19 response efforts.¹

Command centers help streamline coordination between facilities, ensure staffing is assigned correctly (especially vital during demand spikes and staff shortages), give visibility into what is happening with patient populations, and provide critical community outreach tools for testing and education.¹

 

See How St. Joseph’s in Syracuse, NY Maintained Continuous Capacity During COVID-19 With Their Command Center 3.0

 
 

Hospital at Home

Did you know that the benefits of the Care Logistics operational command center can extend to your hospital-at-home program? It begins with the design of processes and roles to efficiently identify, prepare, and progress your hospital-at-home patients. Combining this with supporting patient progression and command center technology provides unparalleled visibility to patient status and drives the workflow and accountability to ensure consistent, quality care regardless of whether the patient is in the hospital or at home. Find out more about bringing the “patient-first” approach of a Care Logistics operational command center to your hospital at home program.

hospital at home

From Your Peers

Command center metrics and financial results

Hear Their Stories

Many healthcare systems have been implementing a Command Center 3.0 to optimize patient flow, drive efficiency, and achieve performance excellence in patient progression. Performance Excellence means continuity of patient care, increased revenue and higher reimbursement, and the reduction of avoidable patient days, while increasing safety and improving patient outcomes.

Not All Command Centers are Created Equal

Command Centers are an important component of operational efficiency, but extending it into a system of care and creating more meaningful collaboration achieves performance excellence, and thus better overall value. The model to deliver that value is unique to forward thinking healthcare systems who have deployed a command center as part of the technology and processes of the Care Logistics Hub-and-Spoke model. Here are their stories:


Schedule a meeting to find out how your organization can achieve performance excellence with the Hub-and-Spoke Operating System


  • Get a non-committal session with one of our subject matter experts at no charge

  • Receive a custom financial opportunity report based on your hospital’s publicly available data

  • Get a personalized walk through of how our solutions address your hospital’s specific needs

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1. KLAS, Healthcare Operations Command Center Ecosystem 2021: A First Look At The Spectrum of Technology, page 7, paragraph 3
2. KLAS, Healthcare Operations Command Center Ecosystem 2021: A First Look At The Spectrum of Technology, page 8, figure 1
3. KLAS, Hospital Operating System Comments, https://klasresearch.com/comments/care-logistics-hospital-operating-system/224697
4. KLAS, 2021 Best in KLAS: Patient Flow, https://klasresearch.com/compare/patient-flow/84

What is patient progression?

Keep Reading: Understanding Patient Progression

Why worry about patient progression?

When it comes to your hospital, you want the best possible care for your patients. Some of the biggest issues impacting quality patient care are patient progression barriers. For example, medical delays take an average of two days to resolve. When your patients exceed their target LOS, they often face unexpected complications, and hospitals frequently experience bottlenecks when patient flow is interrupted. In order to prevent these barriers from impacting patient care, every department in your facility should be focusing on streamlining patient progression.