Home From The Editor QI: the good, the bad and the cost-effective

QI: the good, the bad and the cost-effective

May 2017

WHEN YOU HEAR TALK of a new quality improvement project, do you immediately look for the nearest exit? We know that hospitalists may feel overwhelmed by QI initiatives, so we’re shining a light on QI in this month’s issue.

In this month’s feature, we take a look at the good, the bad and the ugly when it comes to QI projects. Scott Flanders, MD, from the University of Michigan Medical Center, talks candidly about QI projects at his academic center that have missed the mark—and how his institution got those initiatives back on course.

Not surprisingly, a common theme in terms of the problems those projects face is physician resistance. Our feature offers some useful tips on how to increase physician buy-in, which can make or break a QI initiative. Sometimes, the solution is as simple as finding the right data that physicians can believe in and take action on.

Then our Q&A looks at the economic implications of QI efforts targeting central-line associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs). Researchers found that these efforts not only reduce infection rates, but offer hospitals a financial benefit, even in facilities that had already reduced CLABSI rates through previous QI initiatives.

The study is significant because it’s a relatively rare look by academics at the intersection of quality, costs and return on investment.

For hospitalists working in hospitals that are watching the bottom line—just about everywhere these days—that analysis should come as good news.

As physicians become more aware of the cost implications of their care, QI efforts that combine better clinical outcomes with lower costs will be welcomed by CEOs. In this way, QI efforts give both physicians and CFOs a way to do well by doing good.

edoyleEdward Doyle
Editor & Publisher

Published in the May 2017 issue of Today’s Hospitalist
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