Quality improvement: More than just buzzwords

October 4, 2016  //  FOUND IN: Our Employees,


Quality improvement.

Those aren’t just buzzwords. It’s a way of life at UMHS — and we have the numbers to prove it.

Our employees — at all levels of the health system — are constantly searching for ways to enhance their work and take better care of our patients.

Recent projects, which are on display over the next two days in the Towsley Lobby, are some of our institution’s finest examples of improving the patient experience.

For instance, the UMHS Cytopathology department recently looked at the turnaround time for patients receiving results from a Pap smear test. Initially, it took more than four days to learn results. Through staffing adjustments and a better communication plan, patients now get their results within a day and a half.

The bone marrow transplant team also worked hard to improve patient satisfaction, increasing rates from 89 percent to 95 percent. Additionally, the Dexter Health Center was able to reduce immunization errors from 10 percent to only 1 percent in a span of four months.

The teams behind these improvements — and 63 others — will come together in the Towsley Lobby on Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. to discuss their recent projects and conduct poster presentations as part of Quality Month at UMHS.

“These are all employees who took responsibility into their hands to make things better,” said Carol Barnett, course coordinator for the UMHS Quality system and chair of the Quality Month committee. “And they’re excited to tell their story to as many people in our health system as possible.”

Every team has best practices to share for a wide variety of health-related issues that departments may face at UMHS.

“We want our colleagues to see how certain teams addressed certain issues,” Barnett said, adding that each project has data to back up the quality of their solutions. “You won’t necessarily apply the same solution, but you may be able to see what worked and tweak it to fit your needs.”

Support your coworkers by attending this amazing event! Can’t make it? Don’t worry — there are other opportunities to learn about the recent quality improvement initiatives. The posters will be on display, without team members on hand, the rest of today in Towsley Lobby and on Wednesday morning.

You can also find all the posters any time online at the Quality Month website.