Clinical Center News
Spring 2019

Wristbands let patients check-in clinics, day hospitals

a patient's wristband getting scanned upon checking in or out
Outpatients can scan their wrist bands upon checking in and out.

The Clinical Center has added a new component to the electronic medical record system to allow patients to check into an outpatient clinic or day hospital appointment by simply scanning their wristband identification bracelet. Immediately, a patients' location is updated in their record, allowing for staff to improve the time in which patients are seen by clinicians and to better coordinate patient care and enhance patient safety.

Previously, a clipboard, pen and paper were used for the check-in/-out process and clinic staff were dependent on someone notifying them of patient arrival. The paper process also did not update the location in the medical record. With this enhancement, departments no longer have to call the clinic or the nurse to determine the patient's location. Using an electronic process allows clinic staff to remotely identify when a patient has arrived.

When patients scan their wristband, their name will appear on a patient list in the medical record via an application called Display Board. The checked-in location updates in their record with a suffix of – DB (Display Board). As patients check out, the patient list is updated to remove patients from the location and return them to their home clinic location.

After each successful scan in/out, patients will hear, "Thank you for checking in," or "Thank you for checking out." "By decreasing the number of phone calls and interruptions and improving identification of patient location, we have taken a step in improving patient safety and patient care coordination," said Dr. Tina Patel, with the Clinical Center Department of Clinical Research Informatics.

The electronic check-in/-out technology may be brought to hospital procedure areas in the future. The implementation of this new feature was led by Dr. Jon McKeeby, and supported by Keith Adams, Marcus Anderson, Seth Carlson, Larry Harris, Dr. Rachel Khoo, Yenshei Liu, Frank Mickey, Mary Myers, Mindy Nghiem, Dr. Tina Patel, Jeanne Preuss, Richard Walker and Betsy Wendell.

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