Uploading descriptions of the QI programs can take as little as 15 minutes. Once project details and supporting documents are loaded into SQUINT, submissions are reviewed by members of SHM’s Health Quality and Patient Safety committee for clarity, the involvement of multidisciplinary team members, presentation of details, and the description of impacts and barriers to success.
Dr. Messler found the process of uploading simple and easy to use. He plans to add more.
“We have a variety of programs that we’ll probably upload,” he says, including other recent QI programs addressing diabetes and DVT. “There’s no harm in putting them up there.”
—Andrew Dunn, MD, FACP, professor, acting chief, hospital medicine division, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York City
Like other online user-submitted forums, submitting accepted content has added benefits: increased visibility among a community dedicated to improving the care of hospitalized patients and career advancement.
“This is a portal for you to spread what you’ve learned,” Dr. Messler says. “Then, over time, this could be something that could be added to a resume or get to the point that folks will be proud of having a list of submissions to SQUINT.”
For Dr. Shabbir, the utility of SQUINT extends beyond his own use.
“I have a junior colleague who is working on a new quality-improvement program. I’m going to tell her to look into SQUINT to see if others have worked on similar programs,” he says. “If they have, that will put you two or three steps forward. For the novice, it also teaches the language and structure of how quality improvement happens.”
Teaching and changing patient safety is a big part of SQUINT’s goal, according to Dr. Dunn.
“Hospitals should not need to start at ground zero, take months to get started and re-create every mistake made at other institutions,” he says. “By sharing successful projects and learning from our errors, we can move patient safety initiatives along faster and better. … And that will, hopefully, improve outcomes across the country.”
Brendon Shank is associate vice president of communications at SHM.