ASIAN HOSPITAL MANAGEMENT AWARD (AHMA) EMBRACE OF PRODUCTIVITY AND TECHNOLOGY WINS NATIONAL UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL (NUH) A MOST OUTSTANDING AWARD

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1 PRESS RELEASE EMBARGOED TILL Wednesday 30 August 2006, pm ASIAN HOSPITAL MANAGEMENT AWARD (AHMA) EMBRACE OF PRODUCTIVITY AND TECHNOLOGY WINS NATIONAL UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL (NUH) A MOST OUTSTANDING AWARD 1) Tapping on technology to ensure fair play and that there are sufficient nurses to care for patients has enabled NUH to win the Most Outstanding Award for its E-Rostering project under the Internal Service Category at the AHMA this year. 2) In addition, the Pharmacy Department s Lean Management project added boost with a Merit Award under the same category. 3) Widely regarded as the esteemed hospital management awards programme in the Asia Pacific region, the AHMA Internal Service Category awards recognise any hospital department or unit which better serve their co-departments or employees. 4) The significance of NUH s double win this year is continued testimony of its commitment in elevating the standard of its medical care to provide personalised, cost-effective, and specialised healthcare services to its patients. Page 1 of 5

2 LEVERAGE ON INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY FOR ENHANCED NURSING PRODUCTIVITY 5) Fully implemented in August 2005, the E-Rostering System project by the Nursing Department at NUH aims to optimise working conditions for nursing staff through optimal skill mix and adequate staff coverage. 6) Comprising the E-Bidding and E-Rostering modules, the systems enable nursing staff to bid for their preferred shifts. With the advance of technology, the complexity and time-consuming task of rostering is electronically synchronised into a well-managed process. Staff can also be assured of fairness in terms of work shifts deployment. 7) The E-Rostering System impacts over 90 per cent of NUH s nursing staff who operates on shifts, and more than 71 per cent recorded overall satisfaction following implementation. 8) As a result of the E-Rostering System, an estimated reduction of 4.73 days per month per Nurse Manager was reported for rostering and related workforce-management activities. This compounded into an estimated reduction of 217 days per month for a total of 46 Nurse Managers hospital wide, excluding clinics. 9) Thus, by enhancing and integrating NUH s nursing manpower needs through information technology, it has enabled nursing staff to be able to develop both personally and professionally. The E-Rostering System encourages staff to strike a work-life balance, and at the same time, widen the pool of manpower and maximising their expertise and productivity by alleviating administrative tasks, allowing them to focus more on patient-care. 10) Compared to the previous system, I find this process more helpful. As I am currently pursuing my degree in nursing, I can now pre-plan, schedule and balance my work and studies better. It also allows me to work with my Page 2 of 5

3 supervisors on my learning needs and at the same time meeting the needs of the organisation, said Senior Nurse Manager Tay Kim Ngah. PATIENTS BENEFIT THROUGH PHARMACY S STREAMLINED PROCESS 11) Implemented in January 2005, the NUH Pharmacy embarked on the Lean Management project with the aim to achieve cost savings for drugs, improve drug inventory management, reduce drug wastages and improve overall efficiency of drug management for the Hospital. 12) Between April 2005 and March 2006, the NUH Pharmacy achieved a total savings of S$1.26 million from bulk drug purchases and through active negotiations with suppliers. The NUH Pharmacy also benchmarked its drug prices with other hospitals. The cost savings is primarily derived from switching the branded drugs to cheaper generic drugs - with no compromise in drug quality. Through negotiation, NUH was also able to lower the cost of drugs. 13) As a result, patients benefit as the cost savings are passed on to them as they get to purchase drugs at cheaper prices. 14) A review of the consumption volume and supply pattern in drug inventory also enabled the NUH Pharmacy to reduce ward stockholding of 1.5 weeks to 1 week. The same critical review of drug consumption according to drug items by the Hospital, generated a further reduction in stockholding from 1.7 months (7 stockturns a year) to 1.5 months (8 stockturns a year). This results in 11 per cent reduction or S$670,000 less in inventory holding costs. 15) In addition, the NUH Pharmacy minimises drug wastages by closely tracking its short expiry goods, and ensuring that stocks are rotated between sections of the Hospital and with other hospitals. This reduced NUH s total wastage by S$399,858 between April 2005 February 2006, or an 83 per cent reduction over the same period from April 2004 February Page 3 of 5

4 16) Spearheaded by the NUH Pharmacy, the lean management measures involving prudent and focused handling of drugs through cost, inventory and waste strategies, have proven to be relevant and effective for NUH and more importantly, serves to benefit our patients. -End- Media Contact: Jacklin Goh (Ms) Executive, Media Relations Corporate Communications & Services Department National University Hospital DID: HP: Page 4 of 5

5 About the National Healthcare Group The National Healthcare Group manages: Four hospitals Alexandra Hospital, National University Hospital, Tan Tock Seng Hospital and the Institute of Mental Health/Woodbridge Hospital; The Johns Hopkins Singapore International Medical Centre; one National Centre National Skin Centre; The NHGP chain of nine polyclinics Ang Mo Kio, Bukit Batok, Choa Chu Kang, Clementi, Hougang, Jurong, Toa Payoh, Woodlands, Yishun; Three specialty institutes The Cancer Institute, The Eye Institute and The Heart Institute; and Five Business Divisions NHG College, NHG Diagnostics, NHG Gulf, NHG Pharmacy and NetCare Internet Services. Our vision is Adding years of healthy life to the people of Singapore. About National University Hospital The National University Hospital (NUH) opened its doors to the public on 24 June 1985 as the first restructured hospital in Singapore. As the nation s only university hospital, NUH remains dedicated to caring for patients, providing excellent medical education and leading medical research. Since its inception, it has grown to become 935-bed, acute-care, tertiary hospital. NUH is committed to improving the standard of their medical, paramedical and nursing care as well as constantly striving to provide personalized, specialized, cost-effective and specialized patient care. With 22 clinical, 3 dental and 6 paramedical departments, as well as numerous specialist outpatient clinics and specialised service centres, NUH has a comprehensive range of services to meet the growing needs of patients. NUH also has a pool of more than 3500 professional staff providing round-the-clock personalised care to patients. In recognition of its ongoing commitment to provide high standard of care, NUH is the first hospital to be granted accreditation from the Joint Commission International in August 2004 and the Singapore Service Class in July NUH is also the first and only hospital in Singapore to achieve triple ISO certification simultaneously ISO 9001:2000 (Quality Management Systems); ISO 14001:1996 (Environmental Management Systems); and OHSAS 18001:1999 (Occupational Health & Safety Management Systems) in December Page 5 of 5

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