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A Blended Transfer and Communications Center: Designing a State-of-the-Art Mission Control

Morris, Melanie K. MSN, RN, CMTE; Carter, Kimberly F. PhD, RN

doi: 10.1097/NAQ.0000000000000129
Original Articles

Health systems frequently are challenged by barriers to patient flow and transfer intake processes. To achieve the goals of seamless entry of patients into the health system, coordination of the safest, most appropriate transport of these patients, and efficient management of hospital throughput needs, our tertiary health system created a central transfer and communications center. From the design of the center's physical space to the collaborative education efforts, the immediate synergies created by this new “Mission Control” model impacted throughput and customer service. Achievement of these goals is facilitated with state-of-the-art technology, including an electronic throughput and flow software system, which provides real-time capacity updates and status of confirmed and pending discharges. Because a centralized, information-centered approach to coordination has been such a success, expansion to other departments is underway. We are also finding that our operations center is playing a more central role in emergency operations and disaster management logistics at both the local and regional levels. Centralization of key throughput components of health systems is quickly becoming best practice. Revenue savings can be gained by combining departmental resources as well as supporting throughput efficiencies.

Carilion Clinic Transfer and Communications Center (Ms Morris), Carilion Clinic (Dr Carter), Roanoke, Virginia.

Correspondence: Melanie K. Morris, MSN, RN, CMTE, Sr Director, CTaC, Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital, 1906 Belleview Ave, Roanoke, VA 24014 (

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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