Healthcare Performance Anesco CRNA, Team, Saves Broward Health $213K

Media may contact: Elfriede Lynch-Willson, 954-566-7590

Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, February 18, 2014­:  Healthcare Performance Anesco congratulates Heidi Ortega, Anesco’s Chief CRNA at Broward Health Medical Center, for her recent participation in a process improvement initiative last month where she and her team discovered a way to save the hospital more than $213,000 through reduced waste, optimized supplies and enhanced materials process.

Heidi Ortega, Anesco's Chief CRNA

Heidi Ortega, HP-Anesco’s Chief CRNA, with team co-leader Victor Carlomagno, RN

Named the “Kaikaku” event, a Japanese word that means “radical change”, this event invited clinical and administrative staff at Broward Health Medical Center to propose ways to improve workflow and reduce costs. Heidi and her Co-Leader Victor Carlomagno, RN Specialty Leader Surgery, pulled together a multidisciplinary team, including M. Solomon-Watson, CNOR Nurse Manager, A. Moreno, Materials Management Manager, E. Bradwell, ST, L. Jimenez, ST, L. Townsend, RN, and P. Dantzker, Materials, to look at OR/anesthesia processes.

The goal of the project was to reduce operating room costs while improving efficiency and surgeon satisfaction. The team looked at causes for surgery delays and lack of case readiness. They discovered several root causes, including overstocked carts, unorganized operating room cabinets, and a lack of standardization in cart/operating room processes. This resulted in excess inventory, expired products and surgeons waiting while nurses left rooms to locate products and supplies. The team then developed a solution for the problem, including a standardized process for how anesthesia carts and OR cabinet supplies are stocked. Their solutions were tested over 4 days and resulted in a $213,343 savings, with additional savings planned.

Heidi Ortega, Chief CRNA, has been with Healthcare Performance Anesco at Broward Heath Medical Center since 1995. Heidi graduated from Florida International University with a Bachelor of Science, and Barry University with a Master of Science in Anesthesiology.