2015 Innovation Pilot Award Winners Announced

The UNC Health Care and School of Medicine Center for Innovation released the RFP for its third round of Pilot Awards in November, and today announces the two winning teams.

In November, the UNC Health Care and School of Medicine Center for Innovation released the request for proposals for its third round of Innovation Pilot Awards. The Center sought proposals from employees for innovations across a spectrum of areas including care delivery, new technology and advanced analytics. 

The Center received 16 applications from across UNC Health Care and the School of Medicine. The proposals demonstrated clear dedication to improving care for our patients and strengthening our health care system.

The Center is pleased to announce the two winning teams and share a summary of their projects:

Quantifying Patient Complexity to Improve Emergency Department Performance
PI: Debbie Travers (Department of Emergency Medicine)
Co-PI: Abhi Mehrotra (Department of Emergency Medicine)
The Emergency Department currently employs a 5-point Emergency Severity Index (ESI) scale to triage patients; however, the rating tool groups over half of the UNC patients into the “3 – urgent” category without further specificity. Using innovative advanced analytics, this project seeks to expand and enhance the existing scale by identifying the predictors of complexity of acuity among patients currently grouped in the ESI 3 category and develop novel operational strategies using the new classification.

Optimizing the Management of Patients Presenting to the Emergency Department with Atrial Fibrillation: A New Treatment Paradigm
PI: Anil Gehi (Department of Medicine, Cardiology)
Co-PI: Kevin Biese (Department of Emergency Medicine)
Although it is common for AF patients who present at the ED to be hospitalized, management of AF symptoms rarely requires inpatient resources. This project aims to reduce unnecessary hospitalization by implementing and evaluating a new protocol-based care pathway for AF patients who present at the ED, directing those without complications to an AF Transitions Clinic staffed by clinical pharmacists and overseen by Cardiology and Electrophysiology. The Transitions Clinic will provide patient education and multidisciplinary care coordination of AF and comorbidities. The clinic will also ensure communication with the patients’ primary care provider and schedule follow-up appointments.

Thanks to all of the 2015 applicants for their interest and dedication, and congratulations to the winners.

The Center for Innovation is a small resource center that promotes the development of patient-centered innovations designed to address the current challenges facing our nation’s health care delivery system related to cost efficiency, quality of care, innovative health care delivery and alignment of incentives among industry participants. To learn more, visit our webpage at www.med.unc.edu/innovation.