Traditionally in inpatient medicine, external funding as well as industry funding is limited and inpatient physicians are primarily engaged in outcomes research and process improvement projects. Here at the University of Arizona, the Division of Inpatient Medicine is actively involved in multiple process improvement projects, outcomes research and educational innovation. We also support other divisions with their enrollment of patients as we come across patients suitable for related research projects.
Process Improvement Projects: We are involved in many projects that improve patient progression, throughput, and standard of care projects. A few examples are, we are involved in improving the care for Sepsis patients by implementing ‘Early Identification Pathway’, Utilization of Echocardiogram for pre-operative evaluation and we are also involved in patient progression efforts.
Educational Innovation: Our faculty is actively engaged in training next generation physicians and is constantly innovating in the delivery of this education to the resident physicians. One example of such projects is ‘Residents as Teachers Program’.
The ‘Residents as Teachers’ program is a formal yearlong project where residents get to conduct supervised didactic sessions for our medical students. We surveyed our residents to evaluate their interest in academics, and we found out that several of our residents who wish to go ahead with an academic career did not feel comfortable to conduct a didactic session for a medium to large group of students. We hope to study the impact of our program on the comfort and confidence levels our residents at the end of our program with an exit survey. At the same time, we also wish to study the student’s perception on having residents as their teachers. Formal seminars have been conducted, as a part of this program to educate our residents on the methods of effective teaching. After the completion of this project, we hope to publish our findings at the end of next year. So far feedback from residents and students is overwhelmingly positive.
Outcomes Research: We are involved in several outcomes research projects here at Banner – University Medical Center Tucson and Banner – UMC South. One such project is "Delirium Prevention Protocol Implementation." We developed the Delirium Prevention Protocol and created order sets for both prevention and treatment. We obtained baseline data to see how implementation of a care plan like this would impact the number of cases diagnosed and also looking at the surrogate measures like Length of stay, Readmissions and Mortality.