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Adopting the New Standard of Practice – Visibility & Transparency

Written by: Darlene D'Altorio-Jones (1959-2015) on Thursday, June 25, 2015 Posted in: Acute Care Rehab

Now is the time to pay attention to detail. If you have kept an untidy watch on the comparability of your operations to local or national benchmarks then it’s time to pull out the microscope to examine every type of data that streams from your organization daily. Science 101 has returned with a vengeance to the world of health care and the numbers, even though not understood by most laypeople, will lay at consumers’ feet to make a decision. Will you be a star or a sinking ship based on those numbers?

My history includes chairing a hospital quality assurance committee for most of the 12 years in executive leadership, CARF Survey continuous readiness, LEAN Trainer and special lead on a quality inventory project for a health care system. Daily, I worked with data sets, feedback and reporting comparison information so that someone could review the outcomes and determine some fate connected to that information. That was my job and process improvement was a huge part of it.

Today it’s EVERYONE’s job in health care to not only be aware of outcomes but to KNOW how the work contributes to the ever-increasing amounts of data being collected and shared on a large scale about your organization. Health care quality and the results you achieve when the discrete bits and pieces of data are pulled, collated and pushed back out is no longer something that stays behind closed doors.  No one is immune and, in fact, staff need to be acquainted with just how much data will transform and impact their livelihoods.

Today it’s all about the numbers. Managers need quick access to dashboards on every sort of expectation possible because we have entered a data -riven society, and everyone wants answers yesterday!

A discussion with staff in EVERY portion of the health care business is more important today than ever.  The expectations and results for future patients, payers and health care workers will reward the best makers of outcomes as data transparency is shared and consumed.  The bottom will fall out for any organization not embracing a commitment to continuous quality improvement. Value based purchasing, value modifiers and the like will rule standard expectations, not just the expectations of lofty-reaching organizations.

If you want to give your staff a healthy dose of reality, share with them the CMS Measures Inventory file (download at bottom of page) and CMS Measures Inventory guide. This document, compiling more than 1,600 measures ,provides links, purpose, and other information on 52 data-bases and growing. It is quite possibly the best all-in-one compilation of data that managers/executives need at their finger-tips to explore and expand the horizon of data transparency required for demonstrating value within organizations today.

Very soon, if your book of health care business has not utilized data collected to the extent of Web-based compare tools, value incentive payments and the like, it’s only a matter of time before you become fully as a star. Why? Because you will shine brightly or sink quickly when it’s only about the data. NOW is the time to embrace and monitor what your numbers say!

Test your knowledge of these quality improvement acronyms.    

Try our KNOWLEDGE TOOL: (Follow the linked ACRONYM knowledge sheet and answers link to open discussions on quality improvement with staff.  Score and reward for best overall knowledge.)