News, NHS trust

University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire utilises AI process mining tool to improve processes

University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) has collaborated with tech company IBM and data processing company Celonis to implement an artificial intelligence process mining tool, with the aim of helping the trust to better understand processes and where they could be improved.

The tool was deployed as part of an eight-week programme funded by NHS England which sought to examine whether the Did Not Attend (DNA) rate could be reduced. The trust notes that use of AI provided “a far bigger picture of our patient demographics” to assist them in identifying areas where the DNA rate could be lowered.

The “most impactful” adjustment they made to processes as a result of programme was to text people 14 days before their appointment, giving them the opportunity to cancel earlier so that appointments could be re-booked; the trust also used the tool to pinpoint patients who may be treated by several specialties, to see whether their appointments could be grouped together at the same time.

Dan Hayes, director of performance and informatics, states that the tool has “massively improved performance”, with the DNA rate coming down from 10 percent to four percent overall.

Dan adds: “It will massively improve the patient experience. Getting patients seen quickly and succinctly improves outcomes. Just on the pieces of work we looked at, there was an estimated £2.4 million saving but also a 29 tonne carbon footprint saving because of removing unnecessary commutes for patients.”

The trust now has funding to use process mining for theatres to investigate how processes can be improved in this area.

UHCW will assist in rolling out the technique to other NHS trusts in 2024.

We previously took a look at the role of digital in Coventry and Warwickshire’s maternity system strategy, which places focus on improving patient data and mitigating against digital exclusion.

HTN also covered the integrative oncology app and website launched by Dr Penny Kechagioglou, consultant clinical oncologist, chief clinical information officer and deputy chief medical officer at UHCW and Dr Nina Fuller-Shavel, integrative medicine doctor, scientist and educator. The app is designed to be used by patients at any point in their cancer care pathway. Find out more here.