Baptist Hospital, Priority Ambulance win AMBY award

Published 10:30 am Monday, August 27, 2018

Priority Ambulance’s system integration with Baptist Memorial Health Care has been recognized with a national award for Innovation in EMS from the American Ambulance Association.

The pair will receive an AMBY Award for creating a systemwide solution for patient movement to increase efficiency, accountability and patient satisfaction, according to a statement from Priority Ambulance. This solution includes the co-location of ambulance dispatch in Baptist’s Patient Placement Center transfer center, which is located in Memphis but serves the region, including Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi in Oxford.

“As the fastest-growing private ambulance service in the country, Priority Ambulance strives to work with our healthcare partners and communities to help lead our industry,” Priority Ambulance CEO Bryan Gibson said in a news release. “Integration to increase efficiency has been an effective trend within the healthcare industry for some time; however, the degree to which Priority Ambulance and Baptist have integrated our operations and the full co-location and integration of the patient transfer center and ambulance dispatch center is truly innovative in the industry.”

Priority Ambulance and Baptist Memorial Health Care first began designing the now-award-winning master services agreement in 2016, after another private EMS provider serving Memphis facilities left the market. In less than a month, Priority Ambulance introduced 10 Baptist-branded ambulances to serve Baptist’s Memphis campus in April 2017.

Today, Priority Ambulance serves more than 30,000 patients each year with Baptist-branded ambulances at 12 Baptist facilities and in six communities served with 9-1-1 in West Tennessee and Mississippi, including Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi.

To coordinate the systemwide ambulance network, a centralized dispatch center was co-located in the Baptist Patient Placement Center in Memphis. Baptist’s PPC is staffed with registered nurses that track the status and manage all 3,500 hospital beds in the Baptist system, while facilitating transfers and assignments of beds from all Baptist hospitals from one central location using TeleTracking bed management technology. Priority Ambulance’s centralized dispatch center answers more than 70,000 interfacility ambulance transfer requests and 9-1-1 calls annually.

“With our integrated network, we have seen improvements in every community we serve, including improved transport volume, reduced transfer hold times, better resource allocation and staffing plans, increased accountability and brand visibility,” Katie Morrissette, Baptist Memorial Health Care system administrator for telehealth, said in a news release. “We are very proud of the system we have built together and look forward to continuing to work with Priority in the future.”

Priority Ambulance has increased medical transportation utilization by 40 percent alone in the Memphis market and 12.9 percent systemwide reducing transfer hold times and improving patient throughput and ambulance on-time performance in emergency departments, the statement said.