Improving Community and Mental Care for Sufferers of PTSD

Overview

Working with the military as a civilian partner is one of the greatest honors afforded any American company. Alacer is proud of our consultants’ military service and proud of our work on operations and training projects.

Alacer was asked to provide project selection, training, implementation guidance and steady-state planning for several Army officer-led initiatives impacting desert operations veterans and active duty soldiers. One of these initiatives entailed a review and streamlining of the community and mental care assessment and delivery process for those suffering from PTSD, or suspected PTSD.

Challenges

Alacer consultants familiar with military life, veteran’s issues, the Army ORSA quality framework, and healthcare operations were able to leap into this work with a fierce commitment and very particular expertise. Cross-walk training added exposure to improvement methodologies beyond the Army’s ORSA. Historical and narrative reviews were conducted to understand details of typical and atypical care processing situations, including that of a side-arm bearing soldier actively barricading and disrupting care facilities.

These reviews, complemented by work flow analysis, revealed three areas for immediate improvement: forms handling simplification, practitioner scheduling, and alternative treatment counseling. New process flows, within regulations and formal procedural constraints, were created in concert with practitioners and administrative support. Chain of command and staff worked to create new schedules and assure that soldiers were aware of all treatment alternatives while undergoing intake and assessment. Finally, Alacer helped deploy the new process as a pilot at a large joint-branch installation, including follow-on metrics, reporting, and future ORSA project recommendations to continue the march to better care for all.

Results

The pilot study indicated an 18% reduction in forms handling time, and a 3.28% alternate care diversion increase and the project was featured in two publications around Purple Hearts and mental wounds. Perhaps the truest indicator of success: Alacer personnel were invited to the promotion ceremony for the officer responsible for the initiative, specifically cited as one of the keys to his advancement to Major.