Developing and comprehensive risk management at the hospital district level

The Hospital District of Northern Savonia was founded in 1990 and it is a municipal association owned by 18 municipalities, in charge of coordinating the operations of the Kuopio University Hospital. The Kuopio University Hospital, KUH, is one of Finland’s five university hospitals.

The basic pillars of the operations of the Northern Savo Hospital District are quality and efficiency. The most important task of the hospital is to provide patients with the best possible care, and this ambitious goal is achieved through profit management.

The Kuopio University Hospital evolves with determination. Providing the best health services requires investment in personnel skills, equipment purchases, and practices. The Kuopio University Hospital has over 30 specialties and employs a total of about 4,500 employees, so the best tools to support the development of operations are needed. For safety and risk management, the Hospital District of Northern Savonia relies on Granite’s modern risk management services.

Since Granite was introduced, we haven’t dreamed of returning to the past.

Olli Siitonen, Safety Manager, Hospital District of Northern Savonia

Prior to the introduction of Granite in the hospital district, the risk management required by legislation was handled by Excel spreadsheet software. Each hospital unit was responsible for identifying and assessing risks in its own Excel system. Although Excel has its own advantages, the difficulty of use made it stiff and inadequate for the risk management needs of KUH-wide operations. An up-to-date snapshot is a basic prerequisite for effective risk management and cannot be achieved with a spreadsheet program.

Legislative changes led the Hospital District of Northern Savonia to find a more suitable alternative to fulfil modern needs.

The most important goals of the new risk management system were to correct the unwillingness to make effective risk management caused by the difficult usability of the previous solution. Everyone had to be able to participate in risk identification and assessment, so the ease of use of the selected system was a key factor in choosing the service.

Granite’s risk management tools were in use at the Pirkanmaa Hospital District and the Tampere University Hospital. So, as a practical comparison, they were the best.

As Granite’s solutions are proven in the healthcare world, KUH also chose Granite to help develop its operations.

Granite makes reporting easy, both to the authorities and internally.

Olli Siitonen, Safety Manager, Hospital District of Northern Savonia

The hospital is open 24 hours a day. This demanding operating environment also places high demands on tools to support organizational development.

The first step in the introduction of Granite in the Hospital District of Northern Savonia was the digital service for hazard mapping and risk assessment, Granite Work Risk Assessment.

Previously, paper forms were used to identify and assess the hazards and risks of work. Due to the old-fashioned approach, the management of job hazards and risk mapping was difficult and laborious. Workplace inspections caused significant breaks in operations, as the latest versions of risk assessments had to be searched multiple times from folders and binders.

With the introduction of Granite, it was possible to make a principle decision to stop using paper forms in KUH’s occupational safety. With the new system, all job risk and risk assessments, management tools and measures progress can be collected in one place. Granite enables easy reporting with up-to-date snapshots both inside the house and to the authorities.

Risk management has become a hit with the introduction of Granite.

Kari Janhonen, CFO, Hospital District of Northern Savonia

Even in the most advanced organizations, reforms are not always straightforward.

Also, in the Hospital District of Northern Savonia, certain old operating models had deep roots, and the use of the new risk management tool did not start by itself.

Even the best risk management software is not able to change deep-rooted attitudes, if its purpose is not internalized. If the actual practical risk management work, such as risk identification and assessment only occur forcefully, and at the last minute before the deadline set by the supervisors, the results will also be consistent with that. Random and disconnected.

However, a significant gain was achieved in the risk management attitude education through workshops in the Hospital District of Northern Savonia. Granite’s features have contributed to the increased interest in risk management in departmental work.

Granite supports the continuous development of risk management.

Kari Janhonen, CFO, Hospital District of Northern Savonia

Risk management provides the best results when it becomes part of the organization’s everyday activities.

Visibility for action is a key factor in the development of risk work. In this case, Granite’s most praiseworthy quality is the change log, where all changes to the system are automatically saved. This makes it easy to locate them where necessary to look at.

Systematic risk identification and assessment with Granite automatically generates an overall picture of the risk situation, but the long list of identified risks for development is not self-serving.

Granite has also made it possible to archive risks that have been processed because of risk assessment work. When introducing a new risk management service, it was determined at management team level that the performance of risk management work in the hospital district should be transparent.

When each hospital unit can review the risk assessments and risk management measures taken by others, it allows learning from the model and copying the most effective development ideas for their own use. This will help to identify the weakest links in all areas of your activity and the best tips to quickly reinforce them.

Of course we must use the best tools to help our patients.

Olli Siitonen, Safety Manager, Hospital District of Northern Savonia

With Granite, the Hospital District of Northern Savonia has created new levels of visibility for operational risks and opportunities. The features of the system have also made it possible to compare risks.

Combined with risk management workshops, Granite’s versatile range of services has supported the emergence and development of general risk management interest throughout the organization.

Prior to the introduction of Granite, the identification and recording of risks was a mere necessary effort, but since then, its value as part of patient care has begun to get recognition.

Granite helps us to anticipate needs and changes.

Kaisa Haatainen, Patient Safety Manager, Hospital District of Northern Savonia

In addition to changing attitudes towards risk management, the introduction of Granite also made room for risk management in a new way. It is very common that traditional risk management approaches might lead to fragmentation, which is not best suited to the important idea of ​​a hospital district.

Lead time is important for patients, which is why it is important that risks are identified and evaluated in the processes. This will produce results that will make it possible to allocate resources where they best serve patients’ well-being.

Granite has become an integral part of the hospital district. Whenever new activities start, such as, for example, incorporation projects, at the administrative level, these activities are automatically subjected to risk assessment and definition.

With the introduction of Granite, risk management has developed considerably more flexibly and efficiently than it used to, and its results appear above all for all practical purposes.

The importance of identifying and assessing risks has been understood, and the new opportunities that have emerged have been identified, discovered, and accounted for. As a result, the Northern Savo Hospital District is planning to expand the range of Granite services at its disposal.

Read more on how we have helped other customers from the Healthcare sector and see if we’re a right fit for you as well!