While the majority of health care takes place in ambulatory care facilities, the majority of quality improvement efforts continue to be focused in acute care settings such as hospitals and emergency rooms. Common problems in outpatient care settings include delayed or missed diagnoses, medication errors, ineffective patient-physician communication, lack of follow up on lab tests and results, and delayed preventative interventions. The improvement of care coordination and preventative care in ambulatory settings has the potential to decrease usage of acute care resources and overall patient visits, improving patient outcomes, and decreasing health care costs nationwide.
In this virtual Expert Panel, panelists will share their experiences designing and implementing quality improvement programs in ambulatory care settings. To address these important issues, we are pleased to welcome our panelists for this discussion:
• Tara Bishop, MD – Assistant Attending Physician at New York-Presbyterian Hospital and Weill Cornell Medical Center
• Sandhya K. Rao, MD – Medical Internist at Massachusetts General Hospital and Associate Medical Director for the MGH Physicians Organization
• Andrew Ellner, MD – Associate Physician in the Division of Global Health Equity at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Primary Care Physician at the Phyllis Jen Center for Primary Care, and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and Co-Director of the HMS Center for Primary Care
• Amy L. Billett, MD - Director of Safety and Quality, Division of Pediatrics Hematology/Oncology and Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School
Our panelists will offer insight into the following questions:
1. What kinds of quality improvement efforts have you implemented or researched for ambulatory care settings? What’s unique about implementing QI programs in these settings?
2. What are the key factors to successful quality improvement efforts in ambulatory care settings? How do you lay the groundwork for success when developing a QI program specific to ambulatory care settings?
3. What kinds of metrics or indicators do you find most informative in these settings? How did you build consensus for these indicators?
4. Who are the key stakeholders for developing QI programs in ambulatory care settings, and what incentives have you found useful for keeping these stakeholders engaged?
5. With so many competing priorities, limited resources and time, how do you ensure QI efforts are sustainable?
This panel is part of our US Communities Initiative, which is supported by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), and aims to foster discussions between health care professionals on evidence-based practices, and translating these practices across disparate settings, to improve health care delivery in under-served populations in the US.
In an effort to understand the impact of our Expert Panels, we’ve created a short (4 question) survey. Your responses are greatly appreciated—please take the survey before the discussion begins: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/CRFDVV9
We look forward to a rich discussion next week – please join the conversation and share your questions or comments!