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The Quality and Patient Safety Track at the 2005 SHM Annual Meeting


Quality and Patient Safety have become the cornerstone of the ways that hospitalists can improve inpatient care delivery. At this year’s annual meeting, the focus on quality and safety is represented through a series of dynamic workshops that will allow practicing hospitalists to learn practical skills in quality improvement, to contribute to the development of standards on the discharge process, and to understand emerging models of care delivery that may impact inpatient mortality. Below is a brief summary of the workshops and their objectives:

  1. Hospital Mortality Reduction— the Role of Rapid Response Teams: Faculty from the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and leading patient safety programs will present an overview of the concept of rapid response teams, data their effectiveness, and examples of their implementation. Hospitalists are often advocates for patient safety and quality in their institution and will be critical in the development of initiatives to reduce inpatient mortality.
  2. The Role of Information Technology in Quality Improvement and Safety: A dynamic team of physician leaders in quality and safety will review the literature in the use of information technology to improve quality and safety. Examples of IT approaches to improve inpatient care will be described and discussed. In addition, potential barriers in the use of IT-based approaches to quality and safety will be outlined. Hospitalists will learn about how to integrate existing IT support into quality initiatives and when IT may not be essential to process change.
  3. A Primer on Root Cause Analysis: Hospitalists may be asked to be part of interdisciplinary teams that review sentinel events through root cause analysis using tools such as Failure Mode Effects Analysis (FMEA). This process can often uncover system-issues that contribute to quality and safety issues. However, it is critical for hospitalists to understand the root cause analysis process, its limitations, and how to maximize the potential of FMEA to identify underlying issues critical to improving patient care and safety.
  4. Consensus Group/Workshop to Develop the Ideal Discharge Process: Discharging patients from the hospital is a necessary task in every hospital admission, but one that has had very little study or standardization. Hospitalists are critical agents of change in reframing the discharge process and in developing and implementing tools to make that process as safe and efficient as possible. A panel of hospitalists and experts on patient safety especially at care transition points will moderate an open forum to establish guidelines for the ideal hospital discharge. Input from participants will be used to shape guidelines and tools for discharge.
  5. Quality Improvement for the Clinical Hospitalist: This workshop is targeted at bringing quality improvement from the ivory tower to the practicing hospitalist. Participants will be exposed to basic quality improvement tools and strategies that can be applied in myriad settings to improve care. Examples of successful projects will be presented for discussion.

We will be evaluating participation in the quality and patients safety track at the meeting to help determine the need for more in-depth sessions such as a pre-course on quality assessment and improvement methodology. We are excited to offer such a diverse series of workshops and look forward to your active participation!

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