Four years ago, at an event at The Alfred hospital, I heard about a daily interdisciplinary team rounding process called “SIBR” (stands for “Structured Interdisciplinary Bedside Rounds”), where the patient and family were included as part of the care team. It was proving to be a great success at The Alfred in Australia, as well as Emory Healthcare in the US where it originated. Patient satisfaction jumped and units saw lower complications and mortality rates, as well as lower lengths of stay.
Dr Jason Stein, the physician who developed SIBR, realised that sustaining daily team rounds resulted in a better way to organise care in hospital units. In the medical literature these are known as “Accountable Care Units” or “the ACU care model.”
An ACU consists of several interlocking features:
- Unit-based physicians: physicians assign themselves to a home unit for multiple consecutive days, enabling them to be dedicated to the patients, staff, and the outcomes of the unit
- Unit leadership partners: the nurse manager and a specific physician work together to set expectations for staff and rotating consultants so the unit can actually perform at a much higher level
- Structured Interdisciplinary Bedside Rounds (SIBR): physicians, nurses, and allied health professionals perform highly efficient, patient-centred bedside rounds to cross-check information and update a shared plan for the day and discharge
The ACU care model altered the course of my life after I had the opportunity to meet Dr. Stein and understood how ACUs transform reactive care (considered normal in nearly all hospitals) into proactive care. I became deeply involved and since then I’ve witnessed an extraordinary growth in this care model.
The last few years have seen the ACU care model spread to dozens of hospitals and hundreds of units in the US, Canada, and Australia. Now, the process of launching ACUs has become straightforward and predictable.
Dr. Jason Stein is offering a 50-minute briefing webinar on 16 June at 12.30pm (Australian Eastern Standard time). There’s no cost and you can register using the following link: [Link has expired]. If you or your colleagues and staff have any questions, feel free to call me on 0400 262 668.
Published in the Australian Institute for Patient & Family Centred Care June 2017 newsletter and on Medium. Photo by Alex Proimos.