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St. Joseph Medical Center

Project RED Success Story

St. Joseph Medical Center (SJMC) saw its heart failure readmission rate go from 19% to 0% during an eight week pilot, and have since seen it stabilize at 7.62%, well below its target of 10%.

SJMC is a 240 bed hospital in the greater Kansas City area and companion hospital to the smaller nearby community hospital of St Mary’s, both of which are part of the Ascension Hospital System. Under JCR’s guidance, the two hospitals worked together on implementing Project RED.

According to nurse specialist Sue Kratky, RN, “patients do not understand [their disease], no one had spent the time to teach them all this stuff. The foundation gave them a scale, but they didn’t realize the importance.” Patients reported that, “no one has ever spent this amount of time teaching me about heart failure.”

The teams from the two hospitals met together with a simple agenda–“figure out what brought these people to the hospital,” says Kratky. They found that they needed to engage the external organizations, so they went to assisted living and nursing home programs to teach them Project RED.

Another area of positive impact was employee satisfaction. People like to be part of something new, and seeing the impact on patients is very satisfying.  The primary care physicians were also supportive and are taking the message of Project RED to other nursing homes they work with.