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Bold Ideas, Big Savings program announces another winner

In a hospital-wide effort to reduce costs and improve efficiency, Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital launched the Bold Ideas, Big Savings program. Through the program’s website, BWFH staff are encouraged to submit cost-savings ideas they come up with. If the savings idea is accepted, the individual or team that submitted the idea will be awarded a cash prize. Each idea is reviewed by the Bold Ideas, Big Savings committee to ensure it meets eligibility requirements of originality and feasibility.

BWFH President Michael Gustafson, MD, MBA, announced another winner of the program during a recent Leadership Council meeting. The Weiner Center for Preoperative Evaluation’s Gail Tully, BSN, RN, was presented with a $2,000 check for her cost savings idea that will potentially save the hospital $12,000 to $15,000 a year.

“We supply all patients that are seen in the CPE with a bottled anti-bacterial solution of chlorhexidine called Hibiclens to shower with three times prior to surgery. Patients that are phone screened for their appointment are instructed to purchase the solution and follow the same instructions,” says Tully. She explains the product is quite expensive and not good for the environment as it can be detrimental to marine life when large quantities enter into the water supply.

Tully, along with members of the CPE Unit Based Council, looked into the product and determined it is not needed for all patients, only those patients undergoing total joint replacements or spinal surgery with hardware and patients with a history of MRSA or who are on an enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) protocol.

“We did an extensive literature search and research, none of which supported the general use of chlorhexidine prior to surgery,” says Tully. “The change will save the hospital quite a bit and it means no additional expense for patients who are phone screened. And hopefully it will be better for the environment.”

Currently, Brigham and Women’s Hospital is reviewing the idea and considering implementation as well.

Bold Ideas, Big Savings Program


The purpose of Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital’s Bold Ideas, Big Savings program is to encourage employees to submit ideas that could potentially reduce costs.


These guidelines apply to all ideas received as part of Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital’s Bold Ideas, Big Savings program via the On-Line Savings Ideas form. Awards will be given for ideas that are accepted and implemented through the program as a direct result of a submitted idea.


Eligible Ideas:

  1. Must be original and innovative. The idea must not have been previously submitted to any programs and must not already be in progress, implemented or a current policy.
  2. The idea must have clear cut, documented cost savings that warrant implementation.
  3. Must be implementable in less than one year.
  4. Must not be related to anything covered by employee benefits.
  5. The idea must not be a suggestion which attempts to increase morale through ‘special recognition’ or ‘perks.’
  6. Must not be a problem statement without a solution.
  7. Should contain a specific course of action to reduce costs associated with an existing method, system or process.
  8. Must not be considered part of an employee’s job description as determined by his/her department manager.
  9. Must not be a work order, repair or an equipment/maintenance request.
  10. Must support the mission and values of BWFH.

Eligible Employees:

  1. All Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital employees, as well as permanent contract employees, volunteer, per-diem, medical staff and Partners’ employees who work at BWFH are all eligible to submit ideas.
  2. Members of the Senior Leadership Team and Department Chiefs may submit ideas, but are not eligible for awards.

Award Structure:

  1. Awards will be granted for eligible suggestions which are or plan to be implemented.
  2. Cost-savings awards will range from $200 to $2,000 (after taxes), calculated on the following basis:

- Savings of $500 - $1,000 = $200 award

- Savings of $1,001 - $5,000 = $500 award

- Savings of $5,001 - $10,000 = $1,000 award

- Savings of over $10,000 = $2,000 award


  1. Eligible employee completes the online submission form.
  2. Ideas will be evaluated every two weeks in the following manner:

- Review records of past suggestions to determine originality

- Review idea against eligibility criteria

- Forward ideas to appropriate department director (Idea Sponsor) for analysis on BWFH’s Bold Ideas, Big Savings Review Form

- Follow up on assigned suggestions to ensure timely response within 30 days

- Notify employee of plan to accept or deny their idea

All employees submitting suggestions are notified as to the final decision of the Idea Sponsor.


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