HQI Recognized for Leadership in Quality Improvement
Will Receive Dick Davidson Quality Milestone Award for Allied Association Leadership

Press release

WASHINGTON (July 12, 2017) – California’s Hospital Quality Institute (HQI) is the 2017 recipient of the Dick Davidson Quality Milestone Award for Allied Association Leadership for its work to improve health care quality, the American Hospital Association (AHA) announced today. The New Jersey Hospital Association (NJHA) and Ohio Hospital Association (OHA) were selected as honorable mentions for the 2017 award. The award, given to state, regional or metropolitan hospital associations that demonstrate leadership and innovation in quality improvement and contribute to national health care improvement efforts, will be presented July 27 at the 2017 AHA Leadership Summit in San Diego. 

“Every hospital and health system strives to get to zero errors for care delivered to patients,” said AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack. “California’s Hospital Quality Institute, Ohio, and New Jersey are examples for the hospital field on how to tackle quality issues in order to improve care. Following the successful models of others will lead to quality improvement for all.”

HQI was created in 2013 through a partnership between the California Hospital Association (CHA) and the state’s three regional hospital associations – the Hospital Council of Northern and Central California (Hospital Council); the Hospital Association of Southern California (HASC); and the Hospital Association of San Diego and Imperial Counties (HASD&IC).  HQI’s goal is to streamline and accelerate improvement in the quality and safety of care for all Californians.  Through HQI, the four associations have developed a statewide strategy for aligning resources and activities in order to reduce multiple reporting requirements and enhance learning and networking opportunities for hospitals throughout California.

HQI brings together multiple quality improvement initiatives under one comprehensive statewide umbrella.  Among the programs under HQI’s leadership are the California Hospital Patient Safety Organization (CHPSO), the largest and longest-tenured patient safety organization in the country; the Hospital Improvement and Innovation Network (HSAG HIIN); Partnership for Patient Experience; and the HealthCare Reliability Organizing Initiative.  These initiatives have resulted in improved patient safety and clinical outcomes, and enhanced the experience of care at hospitals throughout California.  Among the specific evidence-based improvements have been substantial reductions in Central Line-Associated Blood Stream Infections (CLABSI); Early Elective Deliveries and medically unnecessary Caesarean-Section births; patient falls; surgical site infections; and Ventilator-Associated Conditions. 

HQI’s website is a proven source of valuable information for clinicians, hospital leaders and patients alike.  In the past year, the website has engaged more than 28,000 unique users in nearly 40,000 separate encounters.  HQI is currently implementing a new data hub for California hospitals – the Hospital Quality Intelligence Initiative (HQI2) – which will provide more timely, accurate and relevant quality and outcome data.

Honorable mention honoree NJHA is committed to the ongoing effort to improve the quality and safety of healthcare services. Some of the most noteworthy achievements in quality improvement for New Jersey have been demonstrated as part of the Hospital Engagement Network (HEN) 1.0 and 2.0 initiatives. During the past 24 months, New Jersey saw significant, measurable improvements across all healthcare-associated condition (HAC) areas, as well as readmissions. More than 31,000 cases of patient harm and adverse events were avoided in 2015 and 2016, resulting in an estimated cost savings of at least $261 million. One of New Jersey’s biggest turnaround success stories is in the area of readmissions. Based on the 30-day readmissions outcome measure, the statewide rate for New Jersey hospitals in 2010 was 20.3, the second highest in the country. NJHA, its member hospitals and post-acute providers launched a Collaborative to Reduce Readmissions and other initiatives and partnerships to address high readmission rate, and by 2015, that figure dropped to 17.6 percent. Only one other state outpaced New Jersey in improvement during this period.

OHA, another honorable mention honoree, works diligently with hospitals, health care organizations, and other partners to improve workplace safety and achieve life-saving results. From 2012 to 2016, OHA’s hospital quality collaborative has worked with more than 100 Ohio hospitals and community partners to improve hospital health care quality, saving an estimated $8.5 billion in costs in Ohio. In 2015, OHA launched a statewide quality collaborative to reduce sepsis mortality. In the first 18 months of the initiative, 125 hospitals joined, achieved an 11 percent reduction in mortality, and prevented an estimated 801 sepsis encounters from resulting in death. Since 2014, a cohort of Ohio hospitals demonstrated a 41 percent reduction in safe patient handling incidents while reducing severity 70 percent, resulting in more than $115,000 in cost savings.

“Each year, the Dick Davidson Quality Milestone Award Committee honors the important work state associations do to improve quality and safety for patients. As the chair of the committee, I am proud to honor California, New Jersey, and Ohio for their commitment to delivering quality care and providing an example to the rest of the country,” said James C. Leonard, M.D., president and CEO, The Carle Foundation, and chair of the AHA Davidson Award Committee.

The award is named for AHA President Emeritus Dick Davidson, who strongly promoted the role of hospital associations in leading quality improvement during his tenure as AHA president and as president of the Maryland Hospital Association. Applications are reviewed by a multi-disciplinary award committee that includes hospital association executives, hospital and health system clinical and operational leaders and a representative from a national, non-AHA organization involved in quality and performance improvement. Information on the award and how to apply is available on AHA’s website.

About the AHA

The AHA is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the health improvement of their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which include nearly 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, other providers of care and 43,000 individual members. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health care leaders and is a source of information on health care issues and trends. For more information, visit the AHA website at www.aha.org.