Ethics Consult Application Enhancements

Better Tracking for Patient Information


Between 2011 and 2014, the number of Houston Methodist Hospital’s annual ethics consult requests grew from 127 to 497, nearly 300%. The Ethics Consult Service needed a better way to track this vital patient information. In response, teams updated one of their key applications to  be able to capture more data and provide more robust reporting.

A team of highly trained clinical ethicists provide 24/7 response to calls for ethics consults regarding patients. Calls usually arise when a challenging issue needs resolving, e.g., the designated surrogate making medical decisions for an incapacitated patient or disagreements between family members and the care team about continued medical intervention when it may be deemed inappropriate.

The updates have improved the efficiency and accuracy of the data it captures, enhancing the quality and continuity of patient care and solidifying the service’s reputation as a national leader in biomedical ethics. To date, the ethics consult team has harnessed the app to capture relevant patient consult information for more than 1,800 patients.

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