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URMC / Highland Hospital / Medical Professionals / Physician News / October 2020 / Highland Redesign Efforts Focus on Safe Environment of Care

Highland Redesign Efforts Focus on Safe Environment of Care

Allison Norenberg, MScAllison Norenberg, MSc

As COVID-19 hospitalizations have continued to decline in our community, Highland Hospital, alongside the UR Medicine system, has shifted its focus to a hospital-wide effort called Highland Redesign and Recovery. According to Allison Norenberg, MSc, Performance Improvement Manager, cross-functional teams throughout the organization are working with leadership to address complex problems that continue to emerge amidst the rapidly changing and unpredictable COVID-19 landscape. The ultimate aim of Highland’s Redesign and Recovery effort is to continue facilitating demonstrably safe environments for staff, patients, their families, and the community.

The Highland Redesign and Recovery Steering Committee includes:

  • Bilal Ahmed, M.D., Associate Medical Director
  • Cindy Becker, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
  • Melissa Derleth, MS, RN, NE-BC, Chief Nursing Officer
  • Keely Dwyer-Matzky, M.D., Medical Director, Observation Unit
  • Amy Galiana, Chief Human Resources Officer
  • Steve Goldstein, President and Chief Executive Officer     
  • Linda R. Greene, RN, MPS, CIC, FAPIC, Director of Hospital Infection Prevention
  • Eric Heintz, M.D. Hospital Epidemiologist
  • Sharon Johnson, MBA, CPHQ, CPPS, Director of Quality/Patient Safety and Patient Experience
  • Maureen Malone, Director of Public Relations
  • Robert McCann, M.D., Chief of Medicine
  • Daniel Mendelson, M.D. Associate Chief of Medicine
  • Allison Norenberg, MSc, Performance Improvement Manager
  • Sally Rousseau, LCSW, LMFT, Director of Social Work
  • Susan Simeone, RN, MS, Program Administrator, Emergency Preparedness
  • Pam Thompson, Senior Business Analyst
  • Michelle Vignari, RN, BSN, CIC, Infection Preventionist

The 12 leaders of Highland Redesign teams are additionally part of the steering committee, and are working across departmental boundaries to proactively address problems in specific areas. Those areas include: Communications, Data and Reporting, Environmental Cleaning, Food Management, Hospital Throughput and Capacity, Infection Prevention, Outpatient Throughput and Standardization, Patients and Family, Physical Environments, Remote Working, Students and Volunteers, Supplies and Equipment.

“The number of Redesign teams speak to our systemic approach” said Norenberg, “teaming and innovative thinking across all areas and levels of the organization are key to maintaining safe healthcare delivery environments, and this is exactly what our Redesign and Recovery efforts empower.”

Each team is responsible for developing a road map toward continuously and proactively enhancing organizational processes in their areas as related to COVID-19. The teams are meeting regularly, and reporting out to the steering committee in order to maintain organizational alignment and accountability.

In conjunction with these efforts the Highland Redesign Intranet portal holds the ongoing work of Redesign teams, including an at-a-glance section outlining the most up to date policies on visitation, PPE, employee health, meals and break time, and many other areas.

Questions, feedback, and/or suggestions regarding the Highland Redesign and Recovery efforts may be directed to

The Highland Hospital Redesign Innovation Challenge 2020

Do you have an innovative idea to help aid in Highland redesign efforts? The Highland Hospital Redesign Innovation Challenge 2020 is open to engage the whole organization in thinking innovatively to help combat our most complex redesign barriers  and to recognize and support inventive ideas and change agents within the organization.

The challenge opened September 9 with the deadline for submissions being October 9 at 5 p.m. Two individuals will be selected and announced during National Healthcare Quality Week (October 18 – 24) to receive institutional support in alignment with Redesign Team efforts. Idea submissions will additionally be leveraged as nominations for recognition during National Quality Week. No idea is too big or too small! Submit your innovative idea  that fits into one of the five themes (facilitating safe environments;  patient and family communication/access; team resilience; hospital throughput and bed management; or outpatient standardization and throughput) before Oct. 9 at 5 p.m. Submission details are available on the Highland intranet.



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