MORE TO EXPLORE: Health

Safiya Arnaout

Safiya Arnaout
MPA-Health 2014
Health Information Implementation Specialist
Doctors Without Borders

Optimizing and Sustaining Discharge Lounge Processes

Client
NewYork-Presbyterian Queens
Faculty
John Donnellan
Team
Luis Jimenez, Christine Palazzo, Linnette Swann
New York-Presbyterian Queens (NYP Queens) is a community teaching hospital affiliated with Weill Cornell Medicine. NYP Queens opened a discharge lounge to accommodate discharged patients and expedite bed turnover and new patient admission. NYP Queens enlisted a Capstone team to determine whether the current discharge lounge can be enhanced to improve patient flow or if it should be discontinued. The team completed a literature review to examine national and international best practices and benchmarked high-efficiency discharge lounges in multiple organizations—including those at the Cleveland Clinic. Finally, the team performed focus groups and surveys with staff and stakeholders to obtain firsthand feedback on potential implementations and existing hindrances. The team delivered a final report detailing the causes of NYP Queens’ discharge inefficiencies and providing recommendations to enhance the discharge process, optimize discharge lounge usage, and improve patient experience and flow.
Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year

Design of a Sustainable Project Management Process and Tracking System

Client
NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital
Faculty
John Donnellan
Team
Charmaine Barreto, Elizabeth Gianella, Barbara Janiszewska, Shawna Robilio, Mark Tagwalan
NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital (NYP) is one of the nation’s most comprehensive and integrated academic healthcare delivery systems. The Division of Nursing Education and Continuing Education is involved in multiple campus-specific and ero ss-campus projects. Nursing education leadership at NYP seeks to develop a sustainable project management process and tracking system for the division that will enhance productivity by facilitating more efficient planning and execution of initiatives. NYP enlisted a Capstone team to work closely with the NYP Director of Nursing Education and Continuing Education to redesign their project management process. The team conducted comparative analyses, interviews with key stakeholders, surveys at similar hospitals and organizations that manage multiple projects, and a literature review. Using their findings, the team crafted a sustainable project management process. The team also delivered a report that yielded recommendations on managing e-learning modules, an education tracker, curriculum alignments, orientation e-learning, and equipment training requests.
Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year

Designing an Evidence-Based Nursing Peer Review Process

Client
Hospital for Special Surgery
Faculty
John Donnellan
Team
Steffanii Farrior, Erich Goodman, Patrick Lallier, Lauren Raichle
The Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) is the most recognized orthopedic hospital in the United States and is at the forefront of musculoskeletal medicine. A fundamental component of HSS is the exemplary care its nurses provide—as evidenced by their four-time Magnet designation, which is given to healthcare organizations that demonstrate the highest standards of quality nursing care while also fostering an innovative and collaborative work environment for their nurses. HSS sought to improve their nursing peer review process to maintain nursing excellence. HSS engaged a Capstone team to support the development of a customized review process that incorporates the most recent best practices and utilizes a face-to-face feedback model. The team conducted an extensive literature review, a survey of HSS staff, and interviews of comparable Magnet organizations. Based on the research results, the team designed and developed a peer review process that HSS will be able to incorporate into their culture, thereby fostering innovation and sustaining their nursing excellence.
Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year

Evaluating Gender-Based Violence Programs in Nigeria and the Central African Republic

Client
Médecins du Monde (Doctors of the World)
Faculty
Kathleen Apltauer
Team
Hannah Byford, Kimberly Paiz, Judith Reissmann, Jean Chris Romulus
Médecins du Monde (MdM) is an international movement of France- based activists who are campaigning to promote social change by providing access to healthcare and social services in crisis and conflict settings. MdM enlisted a Capstone team to evaluate their gender-based violence (GBV) intervention program in the Central African Republic (CAR) and research attitudes and opinions on GBV care integration in Nigeria. The team’s evaluation detailed the history of patient care routines over the past three years in CAR and described the healthcare provision processes along with key strengths and weaknesses of the program. The team also created data tools that MdM can leverage in future evaluations. To assess barriers to GBV care integration in Nigeria, the team interviewed staff members using cellphone-recorded voice messages and delivered a report of their findings that will inform MdM integration in Nigeria.
Capstone Year

Market Entry Analysis for Tuberculosis Diagnostic and Treatment

Client
The Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics
Faculty
Kathleen Apltauer
Team
Karen Martirosyan, Caroline Nguyen, John Russell, Daniel Silk
The Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) is a Geneva-based nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating development, evaluation, and use of high-quality, affordable diagnostic tests for poverty-related diseases. FIND is developing a simplified, cost-effective diagnosis and treatment option for the detection of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (ТВ). To capitalize on this new model, FIND engaged a Capstone team to identify how it can implement the new diagnostic globally. The team researched barriers to market entry, conducted interviews with stakeholders, and identified challenges and opportunities for implementation specific to India, South Africa, and Kyrgyzstan. The team delivered a report to FIND synthesizing the current ТВ landscape for each country and provided recommendations to overcome barriers to entry, integrate new diagnostics tools, and scale up operations.
Capstone Year

Developing Design Recommendations for VA Outpatient Spaces from Professional and Veteran Perspectives

Client
United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA Center for Innovation)
Faculty
Regina Gurvich
Team
John Amory, Kevin Frodell, Raul Gomez, Helena Hernandez, Shevon McCalman, Josephine Porco, Joanna Wexler, Max Zeiger
The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides patient care and federal benefits to veterans and is currently seeking to improve the patient experience and utilization of its mental health facilities. The VA’s Center for Innovation, an arm created to develop and evaluate innovative care improvement methods for veterans, enlisted a Capstone team to assess the relationship between outpatient space design and patient experience. Additionally, the VA tasked the team to develop expert and veteran-based recommendations for outpatient spaces in its mental health facilities. The team completed a literature review to ascertain needs of the veteran population, outcomes-based practices, and recommendations in the held. The team also interviewed VA clinicians and professionals to gain firsthand knowledge of the relationship between the safety, aesthetics, and acoustics of outpatient spaces and mental health outcomes. To garner veteran input, the team conducted a series of focus groups and interviews with former service members to understand their concerns and needs better. The team also surveyed veterans to quantify their priorities and opinions surrounding how space design impacts care. The team provided an evidence-based report to the VA that recommends the incorporation of patient safety, natural light and greenery, conscientious artwork, and soothing sounds in future design plans.
Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year

Improving Transportation Processes for Veterans

Client
United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA Center for innovation)
Faculty
Bob Criscuolo
Team
Elissa Mojtahedi, Andrea Pratt-Anglin, James Sternheim, Stephanie York, Falis Yusuf
The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides patient care and federal benefits to veterans and their dependents.
The VA faces the daily challenge of providing transportation for patients to access healthcare. The current transportation process leads to missed appointments, reduced access to care, increased risk of negative health outcomes, and decreased veteran satisfaction and trust. The VA engaged a Capstone team in investigating strategies to improve its transportation processes. The team conducted market research and an environmental scan of 22 VA transportation sites. The team’s conclusions were threefold: transportation availability impacts healthcare access, insufficient performance measures are captured on patient transportation, and transportation accessibility must be integrated into the clinical process. The team provided a report to the VA that included the conclusions and these additional recommendations: standardize the transportation process across sites, implement the automated system “Vetride,” and consistently collect and report key metrics to measure outcomes and promote continuous improvements.
Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year

Enhancing Performance Management Processes

Client
St. Christopher's
Faculty
Bob Criscuolo
Team
Ginny Calderon, Anne Dickerson, Sana Kayani, Opeyemi Osuntuyi
St. Christopher’s is a residential treatment center for at-risk and devel-opmentally disabled youth. St. Christopher’s enlisted a Capstone team to evaluate its current employee performance management program relative to industry best practices, recommend ways to develop a comprehensive employee performance management program and process, and suggest evaluation tools. The team reviewed St. Christopher’s existing performance management program, surveyed and interviewed employees to assess perspectives on the current program, and formulated recommendations. The team identified industry best practices to enhance employee and management acceptance. The team’s recommendations included creating new evaluation tools; increasing the frequency of providing formal and informal feedback- exploring the use of an electronic feedback system; and ensuring buy-in from leadership, management, and union partners. The team proposed a new performance management model that will improve employee performance and ultimately enhance services provided to the youth population served by St. Christopher’s.
Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year

Evaluating Member Engagement of a Nursing Education Program

Client
NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing
Faculty
Susan Abramowitz
Team
Chhavi Arora, Adair Littell, Miriam Merkin, Christine Zhang
NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing houses the Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elders (NICHE) program, a nursing education and consultation program designed to improve geriatric care in healthcare organizations. The NICHE program provides resources for nursing and interdisciplinary teams to achieve organizational goals for the care of patients. These resources include critical leadership training alongside core nursing and gerontology curricula. Its growth in recent years has been coupled with an increasing need to evaluate its client engagement strategies to maintain its competitive positioning. NICHE enlisted a Capstone team to assess its ability to provide current and prospective clients with products and services that reflect the modern landscape. The team conducted a domain-specific literature review, qualitative research with staff and clients, and stratified analyses of the membership base. Their research and analysis results informed a set of recommendations for NICHE to consider a refreshed and evidence-based member engagement and marketing strategy.
Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year

Improving Health Outcomes Via Affordable Housing Provision

Client
New York State Homes and Community Renewal and Enterprise Community Partners
Faculty
Rona Affoumado
Team
Cristian Ariza, Sabina Braverman, Nadia Chait, Olga Deschenko, Mary Nadolny
New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) is dedicated to building and protecting affordable housing and increasing home ownership statewide. Enterprise Community Partners (Enterprise) is a nonprofit organization that collaborates with partners nationwide to finance, build, and advocate for affordable housing. In Brooklyn, HCR and Enterprise partner with developers and several hospitals to provide affordable housing that also improves health outcomes. HCR and Enterprise jointly engaged a Capstone team in developing recommendations for building affordable housing that improves health outcomes of residents and informing their evaluation of housing proposals. The team first completed a literature review and a case study of housing and health. The team then researched population health challenges and resources in the targeted communities. Finally, the team provided a summary of project ideas for the developers, an overall report on the population health challenges in Central Brooklyn with recommendations for housing interventions, and a customized version of Enterprise’s Health Action Plan for Central Brooklyn.
Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year

Understanding Patient Perceptions of Service Delivery

Client
New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai
Faculty
Susan Abramowitz
Team
Chhavi Gupta, Brittany Kaufman, Meredyth Lacombe, Kyung Hoon Lee, Eitan Sufian
The New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai (NYEE) is one of the world’s premier hospital facilities serving primarily the poor and underserved. NYEE has over 170,000 patients annually, and with high case volumes, patients often encounter long wait times that disrupt efficient clinical operation workflows. NYEE engaged a Capstone team to outline the average patient experience. Utilizing client demographics, data from the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems, employee surveys, and client interviews, the team identified patient and staff perceptions of service delivery at NYEE. The team used the results of their observational study and staff interviews to compare the experience of the sample population to the issues identified throughout the population. The students then identified the “average” NYEE patient and created a patient journey map—from entering the hospital to discharge. Based on the foregoing, the team provided recommendations on ways to improve the overall patient experience.
Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year