Winners of the 2009 Quality Fair

The Quality Fair is an annual event that lets employees know everyone has a hand in improving the care offered at the Medical Center, and gives them the ability to showcase their initiatives, many of which have been ongoing for months and even years.

The Center for Quality called for abstracts two to three months prior to the fair on October 29. Twelve teams of physicians and nurses targeted a specific issue related to patient care and designed a way of addressing and securing sustainable improvements.


Along with a dedication to improving patient care, the most important component of the fair is that participants have a good time learning about quality initiatives.


“It is an exciting atmosphere, since you are doing things you may feel are out of your control," said Barbara Anderson, RN, manager of the Center for Quality. "You get to experience the feeling of really making a difference in a patient's experience.” 


The three winning teams, pictured below, were honored for the clarity of their objective, originality of thought and logic, methodology and the success of their results.

quality rapid response
The Rapid Response Team was implemented at the Medical Center on October 15, 2008 to comply with a Joint Commission ordinance. Their purpose was to reduce the number of cardiac arrests among hospitalized patients, who often present signs of clinical deterioration hours before the event. According to a one-year evaluation by Trevor Luen (left), Matthew Churpek, MD, (right) and their quality team, the Rapid Response Team reduced the number of in-hospital cardiac arrests on the four wards included in the evaluation by 32 percent, with no increases in cardiac arrests elsewhere in the hospital.
Team members not pictured: Laura Sink, RN; Deborah Walsh MS, RN; Katherine Pakieser-Reed, PhD, RN; Bruce Minsky, MD; Dana Edelson MD

 quality mammogram
Mammography facilities are mandated to send each patient a summary report within 30 days of receiving a mammogram, according to the American College of Radiology. However, over the past several months an increased number of patients with normal results were not receiving communication about the outcome of their mammogram within the desired time frame. The Improved Communication of Mammography Exam Results team was initiated to identify and correct the causes of the delays. Florence Baker-Mallory, manager for general and breast imaging, and her fellow team members were able to drastically reduce the number of patients receiving delayed exam results after identifying online systems failures, correcting typos in mailing addresses, and closely tracking multiple online systems that report mammogram results. Team members not pictured: Peng Liu; Robert Mallon; Divya Mukta

quality delirium
"Sitters" are often implemented to prevent falls in hospitalized patients with delirium and other co-morbid conditions; however, they are costly and their merit is often not measurable. The Delirium Management team, including Mary Ann Francisco, RN, MSN (left), and Sally Szumlas, RN, MS (right), identified cost-effective ways to prevent falls in hospitalized patients with delirium. "We needed to do this to take care of our patients," Francisco said. The team implemented an evidence-based delirium management program that employed frequent safety checks, comfort measures, hydration/nutrition management and sleep promotion. The program reduced the number of falls per quarter from 2.5 falls over 1000 patient days to .5. They also reduced costly sitter hours per month by over 1100, equal to 4.5 full-time nursing assistants. Team member not pictured: Jocelyn Holmes RN, MS.