SIU Med School Team Chosen to Learn “Hotspotting”

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SPRINGFIELD – Students and professionals at the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine have been chosen as one of 10 new teams to participate in a program that will help them better understand the root causes of patients' health care issues.

The team will be a part of the 2015 Inter-Professional Student Hotspotting Mini-Grant Project learning collaborative. This program provides training on handling “hotspotting.” Hotspotting is the process of caring for patients who are admitted to the hospital several times a year. They face complex circumstances in chronic illness and social barriers.

These students and professionals will be learning strategies to help patients maintain healthy habits and address concerns to decrease their need to be admitted to the hospital.

The program lasts six months and began in 2014.

The School of Medicine will join last year's teams to form a collaboration of 20 team and over 100 students from various health professions. SIU's team members include: Susan Hingle, MD; Tracey Smith, DNP; Meghan Golden, LCSW, Katherine Plachta (medical student), Laura Wilcox (SIUE School of Pharmacy student), Brittany Curls, BA (Masters of Business Administration student, University of Illinois Springfield), Lindsey Fulscher, BSN (nurse practitioner student, SIUE School of Nursing), Whitney Zahnd, MS (doctoral student, University of Illinois), Ashleigh Sanderfield, BS (nursing student, St. John's School of Nursing).

“Many of our patients have needs that can be addressed with some proactive care coordination. This training will allow us to bring new ideas and create a plan to help people who need extra help in staying healthy and out of the emergency room and hospital. This will not only improve quality of life for patients, but emergency and hospital care is very expensive, so hospitals' bottom lines will also be impacted,” Smith said.

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