|Children's Hospital clinics overcome challenges
With more than 30 clinics on four floors under her direction, Rosemarie Battaglia, R.N., knows a thing or two about challenges.
As the manager of Children’s Services Ambulatory Care at MUSC,
Battaglia oversees 32 primary and specialty care clinics, including
infectious disease, neurology, orthopaedics, pediatric developmental,
endocrinology, genetics, hematology/oncology, day services, pulmonary,
urology, rheumatology, adolescent medicine, gastroenterology,
orthopedics, neurosurgery, primary care, pediatric transplant, surgery,
pediatric forensics, sickle cell, Down syndrome, spina bifida,
sweat-testing, neonatal intensive care unit graduates, international
adoption, pediatric phlebotomy, and lactation.
All are located in Rutledge Tower where Battaglia recently gained much
needed space on an additional floor. With a rapidly expanding patient
base, Children’s Services Ambulatory Care is keeping pace, averaging 7
percent growth during the last year. In July, the group added nine new
providers including two nephrologists, two surgeons, two physician
assistants, a urologist, rheumatologist, and nurse practitioner; all
specializing in pediatric care.
To meet the increasingly complex needs of patients, the staff recently
changed its care delivery model by aligning staff into more effective
“Coordinating the staff into teams of RNs, LPNs and PCTs [patient care
technician] allows for better care coordination, and allows them to
understand our patients on a different level,” said Battaglia. “It also
provides consistency of staff and continuous care for patients, and
helps nurses get more familiar with what doctors want so they can
better guide and instruct the family.”
In a setting where clinics share space—often as many as three or four
in one location at a time—the focus on high quality care, and the
coordination of that care, is crucial.
“Patients want the best care, but they also want to move through their clinic visit quickly,” explained Battaglia.
Her greatest challenge—the sharing of space—is also a great opportunity.
“We are definitely forced to use the space efficiently,” she said. “The
upside of sharing space is the one-stop- shop advantage of localized
care. Having all the clinics here in Rutledge Tower means kids with
multiple needs can visit multiple clinics all in one day,” said
It easily integrates care for primary and specialized pediatric needs.
Doctors work side-by-side and often simply walk down the hall for a
Because MUSC is a teaching institution, patients also gain the benefits of residency training and evidence-based practices.
“That translates into more people looking more closely at data
collection and assessment, which helps with diagnosis and care
planning. This is such an advantage for our patients and their
parents,” said Battaglia.
It might mean your visit takes longer, she said, but it also
means you have more experts looking and thinking about your care and
solutions to your health problems.
“Working with residents also helps our nurses stay up-to-date on the
latest treatments and care, and encourages staff to think outside the
box on how to best care for patients,” Battaglia said.
Editor's note: The article was reprinted with permission from the
October issue of the Children’s Hospital newsletter, Kids Connection.
Friday, Oct. 31, 2008