What is Quality and Patient Safety?

Quality has been defined by the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) as “doing the right thing at the right time for the right person and having the best possible result.” Patient safety is simply defined by the World Health Organization as “the prevention of errors and adverse effects to patients associated with health care”.

Cooper University Health Care takes a comprehensive approach to evaluate the quality and safety of each patient’s experience. The main components of our patient care delivery model, listed below, are continuously reviewed, analyzed and improved upon.

  • Adherence to evidence-based practices, comparative measures evaluating management of outcomes and chronic conditions, as we know that providing evidence-based care results in better patient outcomes and lower costs of care for consumers.
  • Timely and effective access to care.
  • Safe patient care by following 18 hospital patient safety indicators on safety and following related events.
  • Clinical outcomes through comparison to other leading health care organizations and national benchmarks of care, while identifying and utilizing best practices.
  • Coordination and management of chronic conditions and care transitions.

How is Quality and Patient Safety measured?

The Quadruple AimCooper University Hospital evaluates the quality of care by measuring whether it is effective, timely, safe and responds to our patients’ preferences and needs. Our Quality Improvement Model is based on the expectation of continuous improvement where performance is evaluated in an atmosphere that supports openness and transparency.

Utilizing the "Quadruple Aim" approach developed by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), Cooper utilizes multiple approaches to measure the delivery of quality patient care.

Enhancing the Patient Experience

  • Improving communication with doctors, nurses and responsiveness of hospital staff.
  • Improving responsiveness to pain management.
  • Providing a clean and safe hospital environment.
  • Provide clear and understandable discharge information.
  • Review patients self-reported experience results from the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Hospital Surveys (HCAHPS) to convey aspects of care that we have opportunity to improve our delivery of care.

Improving Population Health

  • Implementing evidence based practice and core measure compliance.
  • Reduction in hospital readmissions, mortality rates, and hospital acquired conditions.
  • Reduction in errors related to complications.
  • Evaluating outcomes that measure the cost of care delivery and level of care provided for the below matrix:
    • Inpatient stroke
    • Venous thrombolytic embolism (blood clots)
    • Sepsis
    • Immunizations
    • Perinatal care
    • Emergency department throughput
    • Outpatient emergency department pain management
    • Outpatient colonoscopy follow up

Reducing Costs

  • Reduction in readmission expense.
  • Reduction in spending for workers’ compensation claims.
  • Reduced employee injuries.
  • Reduced medical error litigation.
  • Improved employee productivity.

Improving Provider Work Life

  • Prevent and identify provider/staff burnout.
  • Implementation of team documentation into electronic health record, which has been associated with increased staff satisfaction, improved revenues and the capacity of the team to manage a larger volume of patients (i.e. clinical documentation specialists). (Bodenheimer T, 2014)(Reuben DB, 2014)
  • Standardize workflows which result in improving employee satisfaction.