Recent stories offer insight into cultural factors promoting quality outcomes in cardiovascular care. Transparency and collaboration between hospitals can help improve care according to the Pediatric Cardiac Critical Care Consortium, and a number of articles argue for the importance of physician leadership in creating a quality culture in cardiology.

Interhospital collaboration may improve surgical outcomes in children – Healio Cardiology

A recent study and news out of the Pediatric Cardiac Critical Care Consortium, an initiative founded at  Michigan Medicine’s C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, suggests that interhospital transparency and quality collaboration can have a significant impact on improving outcomes. “Compared with baseline, there were significant improvements after exposure to the collaborative in in-hospital mortality, post-operative ICU mortality and major complications,” reads Healio.

More insight can be found on the University of Michigan Health Lab blog. “These changes in outcomes seem to reflect PC4’s commitment to transparency between institutions and collaboration to share best practices,” says Michael Gaies, MD, the study’s lead author and PC4 founder. “Hospitals are working together to create a culture of collaboration rather than competition. This work is having a tremendous impact on children and families affected by critical heart disease.” Read more »

Good Leaders Make Good Doctors – New York Times

“Physician leadership is critical for better patient outcomes, clinical performance and professional satisfaction,” writes Dhruv Khullar, MD of New York-Presbyterian Hospital for the New York Times. “That’s true not only during emergencies, but also for managing chronic diseases or improving hospital efficiency.” As a case study, Dr. Khullar cites the Leadership Saves Lives initiative which focused on training clinical leaders to change hospital culture and promote proven practices. “We know culture matters,” said Dr. Elizabeth Bradley, co-creator of the initiative. “But we wanted to show that you can take tangible steps to improve culture.” Read more »

Successful Systemization of Cardiac and Vascular Care: Experiences from MCVI – Vascular Disease Management

A case study from January 2019 in Vascular Disease Management suggests that system-wide “systematization” of cardiac care, standardizing definitions of quality and unifying peer review across hospitals, can reduce variability and costs and improve outcomes. Leaders at Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute (MCVI) indicated that physician leadership was critical to this goal. “The perception of many physicians is that leaders are making decisions without them,” said Barry T. Katzen, MD, Chief Medical Executive of MCVI. “That’s not workable in the long run. Organizations want to have physician engagement and involvement.” Read more »

Physician Leadership and Creating a Quality Culture in Cardiology

Creating a Quality Culture in Cardiology – Accreditation Can Help

Through our experience at Accreditation for Cardiovascular Excellence, we know that quality-focused accreditation can help hospitals and even large systems achieve this kind of systematization and build a quality culture with physician engagement. The supportive accreditation process provides external expertise which standardizes quality definition, for example, against openly available, expert-developed standards.

Supportive, third-party review also helps organizations and systems achieve physician engagement and cultural change in developing or improving upon their own internal quality review processes — like regular peer case review. We have experience helping in creating a quality culture in cardiology at over 100 hospitals around the world. Learn more about the difference ACE can make for your organization on »

Kurt Jensen
Kurt Jensen is the communications director of Accreditation for Cardiovascular Excellence (ACE) and the editor of Quality Matters. ACE is an independent, physician-led organization that evaluates and monitors facilities providing cardiovascular care.

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