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Achievement Awards Spotlight: Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania–Cedar Avenue

August 25, 2023

HAP's annual Achievement Awards honor hospitals and health systems for their innovation, creativity, and commitment to patient care. The Achievement Awards showcase and share member hospitals’ and health systems’ successful programs and best practices.

This year, the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania–Cedar Avenue received the Living the Vision Honorable Mention for its outstanding project to maintain access to high-quality ­surgical care in a historically marginalized community.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • The challenge:  During 2020, a longstanding urban hospital was slated to close due to financial challenges. The local medical community prevented the closure of the facility through an innovative model of shared responsibility, but the facility’s surgical services were discontinued.
  • Taking action:  With surgical services no longer on site, the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania–Cedar Avenue established a new surgical access model in which Advanced Practice Providers and senior surgical resident moonlighters, supported by surgical faculty, provide full-time in-person surgical consult coverage and surgical care coordination at the safety-net hospital.
  • Results:  The on-site surgical access team at the safety-net hospital has allowed for efficient and coordinated care for patients with surgical needs, improving the timeliness and accuracy of surgical assessment and reducing the number of unnecessary patient transfers for conditions that can be managed conservatively at the safety-net hospital.
    • The new team also helped reduce transfer delays for patients requiring emergent surgical interventions.
  • Big takeaway:  While interventional services are no longer available at the safety-net hospital, the health system’s innovative on-site surgical access team provides a bridge to high-quality, equitable surgical care.
  • Quotable:  “In summary, our on-site surgical access model has ameliorated some of the challenges associated with providing surgical care through a hub-and-spoke arrangement,” the team noted in its entry. “For health systems considering a similar restructuring of procedural services, our experience can serve as template for delivering equitable, high-value care to patients with surgical needs.”

Congratulations to Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania–Cedar Avenue for its outstanding effort to implement this innovative “hub-and-spoke” model for surgical care.

Questions about the HAP Achievement Awards may be directed to HAP Member Services at (717) 561-5359.