Improving Services, Improving Care
To improve services for referring veterinarians and their patients, the Hixson-Lied Small Animal Hospital has added two new positions, a referral coordinator and a medical sonographer.
Lori Schminke was hired this summer as the new referral coordinator. Ms. Schminke will serve as the communications link between hospital specialists and primary care veterinarians. In this role, she’ll coordinate the patient referral process to maintain the continuum of care, ensuring that the patient records are complete before the visit and that discharge summaries and diagnostic reports are generated and distributed appropriately. She’ll also be the point of contact for assistance with navigating the hospital’s electronic medical record portal.
“We respect the relationships our referring veterinarians have with their clients and patients, and we are committed to prompt follow-up after their patients are seen,” said Dr. Stephanie West, Director of Hospital Operations. “With the addition of this position, we hope to enhance communications with primary care practitioners.”
To increase the hospital’s diagnostic imaging capabilities, a sonographer was hired. Melissa Jorgenson, a Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer, joined the radiology service unit this fall with previous experience in the human medical field.
“As our patient caseload grows, so does the need for diagnostic imaging,” said Dr. West. “As good as we are with scheduling and moving patients through the process, emergency cases that need to take priority often cause delays in routine services. The addition of a sonographer will help streamline the process and allow us to move patients through in a timely manner.”