Elmhurst Memorial Healthcare

Centralized Nurse Call Triage – How Just A Few Operators Can Respond To Every Patient Request in Seconds

Bed Size: 282
Deployment Timeframe: 4 Months
Integrations: Mobile/Beds/RTLS/ADT

Key Decision Factors for Adoption of Critical Alert

When Elmhurst Memorial Healthcare began planning for its new 886,000-square-foot Main Campus, improving the patient experience was a top priority. Overall, the hospital had a goal to create a less intimidating and more comforting healthcare experience for patients and their families. A key element to their success would be a nurse call system that enabled staff to quickly and effectively respond to patient requests for both medical and non-medical needs.


Elmhurst Memorial Hospital was operating multiple nurse call (also referred to as “call light”) systems throughout its original facility. Over time, the various systems became a challenge to maintain and provided little flexibility for integration. A goal for the New Main Campus was to install a single system that could provide a superior patient experience as well as meet the needs of diverse internal stakeholders.


“In addition to improving patient satisfaction and alignment with our new environment and processes, we wanted to be able to mine, capture and analyze call light system data to support our focus on continual improvement,” said Jean Lydon, Associate Vice President, Patient Care Services, Elmhurst Memorial Hospital. “We were looking for a system that could provide relevant data to hospital administration and finance, as well as to our nursing and medical teams. And, it had to meet the requirements of our IT and facilities departments.”

“The first thing that struck us was how quiet it was on the floor. Critical Alert’s centralized system had virtually eliminated the alarms, buzzers and overhead paging associated with most call light systems. Patient requests were quickly answered and triaged by dedicated operators. Those same operators were able to send requests directly to the appropriate caregiver’s communication device and monitor request fulfillment.”

Jean Lydon

Associate Vice President, Patient Care Services, Elmhurst Memorial Hospital

Centralized Operators Immediately & Positively Impact Patient Responsiveness




Elmhurst's centralized triaging of their nurse call requests led to immediate response to patient needs while ensuring that the right message was delivered to the right staff member in the fastest, most efficient manner possible.


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Quieter Units

When Elmhurst Memorial Hospital opened the doors on its New Main Campus, staff immediately noticed how quiet it was on the floors and in the patient pods. Critical Alert’s centralized system eliminated all the alarms and overhead paging associated with their old nurse call systems. “Staff also appreciated that they could now be proactive in meeting a patient’s needs, as the centralized system allowed them to walk into the room with a solution rather than a question,” notes Lydon.

Faster Responsiveness

The patient experience has improved thanks to faster responses to patient requests made possible with CommonPath Centralized. Data from the first nine months of operation at Elmhurst Memorial Hospital’s New Main Campus tells a compelling story:



– Patients receive a personal response from the dedicated nurse call operator within 5-6 seconds of activating a request

– The centralized nurse call operators triage an average of 26,000 patient calls a month

– Bathroom requests are being fulfilled within 2.9 minutes

– Pain medication request fulfillment occurs within 5.9 minutes

– Program Directors receive a monthly “top ten” patient requests for their nursing units

– CommonPath reporting identifies busiest times of day for patient requests on a unit-by-unit basis

Better HCAHPS Scores

Elmhurst Memorial Hospital has also seen significant increases in overall hospital rankings and patient likelihood to recommend. In the first nine months at the New Main Campus, overall patient satisfaction scores increased from 66.7 to 79.3, and likelihood to recommend went from 74.1 to 84. Patient scores for the new outpatient surgery units soared to new levels, with satisfaction levels ranging from 90 to 100.