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In June 2022, Murj launched The Pulse, a hopeful foray into the world of podcasting. Hosted by CEO Todd Butka—and the occasional guest host from the Murj leadership team—The Pulse seeks to explore the latest trends in achieving the very best in CIED care through conversations with leading cardiac device professionals.

After a year of engaging, thought-provoking talks, our audience has gained valuable insights that can help reshape perspectives on advancing CIED care through shared experiences and best practices.

In this blog post, we explore five highlights from one year of The Pulse.

Building trust in your team is essential to improving care and financial performance

In episode six, Butka and Murj COO Reed Gaither connected with Kelli Shifflett, assistant VP of growth and business development at HCA Healthcare Physician Services Group. Shifflett preached the importance of developing trust and delegating responsibilities to skilled team members, as well as fostering effective communication and collaboration.

Like any other professional environment, the device clinic runs infinitely smoother when staff members are aware of their roles and can work together in harmony with their peers. The ability of management to not only hire but to train and support well-qualified staff members is often overlooked but is critical to the long-term health of a CIED clinic.

…You have to make sure that the people around you trust you and you trust them, and that you hire just really good talent. Folks that—you’re going to look over their shoulder—but you’re confident they’re going to get it done, or they’re going to come to you if there’s a problem.

You have to be able to match that scale, know how to delegate, know how to identify talent and train that talent and hold them accountable, and build trust within your teams because it’s the only way you’re going to be successful.

Kelli Schifflett assistant VP of growth and business development, HCA Physician Services Group

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Embracing change is essential to better care delivery

Episode nine featured Butka chatting with Mike Silva, R.N., RCES, CCDS, cardiac device clinic manager at WellSpan Health. Their wide-ranging talk covered the importance of implementing best practice standards for documentation, policies, and procedures in the CIED clinic, as well as Silva’s perspective on how WellSpan is making strides to improve care.

Specifically, Silva highlighted the importance of fostering a culture that embraces change within the CIED clinic, recognizing its role in driving improvements to patient care. He emphasized the importance of continuously evaluating and refining clinical practices and technology tools to adapt to evolving patient needs. Silva’s insights shed light on the crucial role of a dynamic and forward-thinking mindset in delivering exceptional care.

I’m always trying to look for what we can do to improve clinically, with processes, with how we utilize software. You’ve got to be willing to change.

One of the things I hated as a nurse over the years was I’d hear other nurses say, ‘Well, we’ve always done it that way.’ But might there be a better way? I’ve always tried to have the philosophy that if there’s a better way and we can make it happen, let’s do it.

Mike Silva R.N., RCES, CCDS, clinic manager, WellSpan Health

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When it comes to CIED care, teamwork really does make the dream work

Murj Chief Experience Officer (CXO) Chris Irving got a chance to try his hand at hosting The Pulse when he sat down with Cara Schaaf, R.N., and electrophysiologist Jeff Senfield, M.D., both of Upstate Cardiology. Schaaf and Dr. Senfield shared insights into what a good physician-nurse dynamic looks like in the CIED clinic and how it can improve patient care.

In the high-touch environment of the CIED clinic, effective collaboration between physicians and nurses is critical. Together, they deliver comprehensive care, promptly address issues, and educate patients. Through solid rapport and effective teamwork, the physician and nurse create an efficient workflow team that enhances patient care.

Up until Cara came, some pretty well-trained and highly-skilled technicians ran the clinic. But it was a lot of work on my end because there wasn’t a nurse or someone more clinical in the device clinic…

And Cara completely changed that dynamic when she came because she is very independent. She understands a lot of things. I ask her to do things that are probably even beyond her scope in her realm. But she’s just such an amazing clinician that it’s been just a complete boon to my ability to care for these patients. Because believe me, if it wasn’t for her, I don’t know I would effectively deliver this care.

Dr. Jeff Senfield electrophysiologist, Upstate Cardiology

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Overcoming the CIED clinic staffing challenge

When Tina Allmandinger, R.N., arrhythmia diagnostic center supervisor at Parkview Physicians Group Cardiology, discussed limited CIED staffing in episode three of The Pulse, she shared her experiences in a clinic with entrenched, paper-based workflows, and her efforts to implement technology to optimize CIED operations and improve staff satisfaction.

Allmandinger explained the challenges associated with growing CIED device data and associated administrative tasks that reduce the time and resources available for workflow improvement. These dynamics can lead to overworked employees and staff retention challenges. But, according to Allmandinger, solutions are out there. Allmandinger stressed the importance of taking time to leverage modern technology solutions to streamline operations and break the cycle of inefficiencies.

We were always working behind. Every summer, people were on vacation and we were just barely surviving. And all of this data coming across from remote monitoring was just exploding. So we had to figure out a way to manage that without getting more staff.”

It really was [Murj] and your passion to want to help the clinical portion of what we do. If you had not been so persistent in wanting to help people like us, we wouldn’t be here.

Tina Allmandinger R.N., arrhythmia diagnostic center supervisor, Parkview Physicians Group Cardiology

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The future of CIED care unfolds at the intersection of electrophysiology and technology

Zayd Eldadah, M.D., Ph.D., director of cardiac electrophysiology at MedStar Heart & Vascular Institute, chatted with Gaither as part of a special series of mini episodes in the leadup to Murj’s educational fireside chat at CV Transforum Fall’22.

Dr. Eldadah highlighted the integral role of technology in advancing CIED care. Technology serves as a catalyst for progress in CIED care, enabling providers and staff to push boundaries and uncover new possibilities. When CIED professionals are driven by a commitment to continuous learning and innovation, the future of patient care is limitless.

One of the pleasures of building a career out of cardiac electrophysiology is that you’re so intimately tied to technology. The promise and power of technology are really what enables us to do better for our patients. Every day that there’s a new innovation in our specialty—which is so hyper-driven by technology—is a better day for patients and a more exciting day for us. There’s a greater capacity to heal, prolong, and improve life.

Dr. Zayd Eldadah M.D., Ph.D., director of cardiac electrophysiology, MedStar Heart & Vascular Institute

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