Editor’s Note: The 2019 winners of the McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards are being announced Oct. 4-11. Skilled Care track winners are being announced here by McKnight’s Long-Term Care News. Senior Living track winners are being announced on the website of sister publication McKnight’s Senior Living.

Its efforts to improve collaboration with post-acute providers helped Bethel Pointe, a skilled nursing facility in Muncie, IN, win Gold in the Safety category in the Skilled Care track of the McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards competition. 

Since safety is a cornerstone of excellent care, the community was looking for ways to improve in that area. It chose Olio for a collaboration platform that allows health systems, physicians and post-acute providers to communicate and connect in real time on a patient’s condition in a single digital environment. Olio enabled Bethel Pointe to collaborate with each other and staff at the hospital to ensure each staff member has up-to-date information on each patient and their progress. 

A key element is an “escalation” feature, which allows skilled nursing staff to “escalate” a resident via a digital alert to the resident’s physician team so they can intervene on the resident’s behalf. 

“Our experience is leading to better patient outcomes,” Administrator Derek Gibson told McKnight’s Long-Term Care News. “Our facility takes extremely sick patients, sometimes with more comorbidities than we can handle. When this happens, we can now communicate with the acute-care provider immediately as to what is happening with the patient and collaborate to see if the patient was possibly discharged too early or if there is something more we could do to prevent a re-hospitalization. We fully expect the relationships with our acute-care partners to flourish for many years to come.”

2019 Tech Awards

Other Safety award winners: 

Silver Award: Saint Mary’s Home of Erie, of Erie, PA, for advancing the electronic health records in its facilities. Among the progress: It implemented interdisciplinary progress notes and eDOCs, electronic physician orders, eCharting and the Facility Dashboard. This automation has reduced the number of medication errors and keeps staff alerted to resident changes.

Bronze Award: Villa Healthcare, of Skokie, IL, for incorporating Direct Supply TELS for safety support in its 34 skilled nursing facilities. TELS uses information from maintenance industry experts and state surveyors to create a library of life safety tasks and materials tailored toward each building’s specific needs. Among its capabilities: It assists with unscheduled maintenance tasks such as work order creation for leaky faucets, and also helps with regular maintenance tasks such as water temperature checks and fire drills. 

Entries for the competition were collected earlier this year and judged by an independent panel of long-term care and senior living experts.

Stanley Healthcare is the Platinum Sponsor of the 2019 McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards. MatrixCare is the Gold Sponsor of the Senior Living track.