Developing Treatment Guidelines for Hip Fractures

Marianne Aiello, for HealthLeaders Media , January 13, 2012
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This article appears in the January 2012 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.

Though UPMC Hamot has been using treatment guidelines for years—since long before Jim Donnelly, RN, MBA, chief quality officer and chief nursing officer, started there 12 years ago, he says—the organization is still developing new order sets when problem areas arise.

The organization has a robust history of joint replacement work, and the joint replacement process team is translating those guidelines to bring the same level of success, safety, and quality to hip fracture patients.

Donnelly and his team decided to focus on this area because the organization does a lot of orthopedic surgery and, nationally, elderly patients who suffer hip fractures suffer a high mortality rate.

"If hip fracture patients are well managed, they can do well; but they're fracturing their hips because they have significant osteoporosis and typically other things going on," Donnelly says. "These patients require a comprehensive assessment and a proactive and preventive approach to complications, so you're combining aggressive geriatrics with orthopedics. The effort is less than one year old, but we're seeing evidence of improvement."

This article appears in the January 2012 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.

Marianne Aiello is a contributing writer for HealthLeaders Media.

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