Capstone Courses and Projects

Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center

Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center's Health Home
The main objective of the Capstone team was to facilitate the working relationships between partner organizations involved in the Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center (BL) Health Home Program. As an approved Health Home, BL sought the help of the Capstone team to achieve a better understanding of partner organizations within its Health Home provider network, in order to improve the coordination of services provided to Health Home enrollees. The Capstone team provided BL with a comprehensive literature review of Health Home State and Federal policy, as well as an in-depth case study for the Health Home model. In addition, the Capstone team interviewed BL's Health Home partner organizations and developed a comprehensive analysis for building an effective Health Home framework within the given organizational resources.

Health Plus

Investigating the Drivers of Increased Specialty Utilization for a Managed Care Organization
Health Plus is a managed care organization that covers over 323,000 low-income and underserved individuals in New York City and Nassau County through the Medicaid, Child Health Plus, and Family Health Plus state-sponsored health programs and through federal Medicare Advantage programs. The Capstone team worked to understand the underlying reasons for growth in specialty physician outpatient utilization in its state sponsored programs. The team conducted a literature review to understand national trends and drivers of specialist utilization. Using hypotheses from the literature review, the team tested them using the organization’s internal data. Finally, the team conducted surveys of primary and specialty care providers within the Health Plus network to better understand referral patterns and usage patterns of primary care and specialists. Finally, the team made recommendations and created metrics for managing the use of outpatient specialty services without detriment to quality care and provider satisfaction.

Helene Fuld College of Nursing

Industry Analysis and Strategic Planning
As part of the Helene Fuld College of Nursing (HFCN) strategic planning process, the college sought to understand the current and future needs (5-10 years out) of what health care employers would require of nurses and nursing education. Interested in growth, the college expanded the scope of nursing degrees it currently offers by receiving approval from New York State to start a baccalaureate degree in nursing. The scope of work completed by the Capstone team included an industry analysis specifically focusing on current trends in nursing, RN job postings, review of internal and external nursing curriculum, and development of three short-term and long-term terms options and opportunities for HFCN to focus relative to RN education preparedness and employment opportunities in the metropolitan area.

James J. Peters Veterans Administration Medical Center

Evaluation of Product Line Management
The Bronx Veterans Administration Medical Center (VAMC) has 311 hospital beds and 120 nursing home beds, and provides a broad range of inpatient and outpatient health care services for our nation’s veterans. It is currently one of the few VAMC’s in the nation that utilizes a Product Line Management (PLM) model. The Bronx VAMC is considering possible changes to its management structure and asked the Capstone team to provide recommendations. Although redesigning product lines could be beneficial for patient care, the Bronx VA is limited by budgetary and spatial constraints. The Capstone team conducted an extensive literature review, and interviewed staff, PLM consultants, and other healthcare organizations that are using PLM. The team provided recommendations on best practices to the senior management team with the information necessary to determine what changes are most critical, cost-effective, and feasible to implement.

Maimonides Infants & Children’s Hospital

Communication Project
This Capstone project was designed to provide evidence-based strategies to assist Maimonides Infants & Children’s Hospital (MICH) in developing a Patient and Family Communication Book and Resource Guide to enhance and facilitate patient-centered care and communication among healthcare professionals. The Capstone team interviewed hospital staff, physicians, and patients’ families in order to better understand current communication strategies and challenges. Based on this research, the team offered guidance on content and recommended that MICH shift the major components of the communication book to an electronic format to enhance usability. The team’s work on the book should lay the foundation for an electronic communication guide and record

Safe Space NYC

Ambulatory Patient Groups Behavioral Health Revenue Projection Model
Safe Space is a nonprofit organization with a 70 percent Medicaid population. They offer a wide range of integrated family support and youth focused programs, including mental health services, designed to help families build a more hopeful future for themselves. As of October 2010, mental health clinics such as Safe Space, under the direction of New York State’s Office of Mental Health, must adhere to drastically different reimbursement rates and guidelines for Medicaid patients called Ambulatory Patient Groups (APG). The first aim of the Capstone project was to research and summarize the new rates and guidelines. The second was to provide a three year business plan for Safe Space using models built by the Capstone team. The team used the model to conduct revenue projections under the APG methodology that analyze various service mix options and management strategies. Finally, the team recommended strategies to maintain or improve Safe Space’s performance under the new reimbursement system.