At the Peak of Excellence

Several innovative, staff-driven projects recently took center stage at Adirondack Health for enhancements in the outcome and quality of care provided to patients and living center residents.

Enhancing patient and nursing-home resident care never takes a vacation at Adirondack Health, and staff from multiple departments frequently team up to raise the bar when it comes to providing care in the hospital or Living Centers. Once a year, these efforts are submitted as formal projects, are evaluated and voted on by staff to receive the Peak of Excellence Award.

“The competition this year was intense,” said Tina Charbonneau, Quality Improvement Manager at Adirondack Health. “The difference between the winners and those receiving an honorable mention was a mere fraction of a point. The caliber of the initiatives underscores the commitment all Adirondack Health staff have to quality of care across all disciplines and departments. In the end, the real winners are our patients and living center residents.”

Peak of Excellence patient care initiative winners include the following projects and programs:

Gold Medal Awards

· Increased patient-pharmacist communication to ensure patients understand what their prescribed medications are for and how to use them effectively in order to have the best possible health outcomes.

· A multidisciplinary team approach to reduce surgical complications, focusing on complications associated with antibiotic overuse.

Silver Medal Awards

· Use of a hand-held sanitation monitoring system to measure effectiveness of cleaning practices, indicate areas that need to be re-cleaned, and data collection to evaluate and implement best cleaning procedures.

· Patient-centered care initiatives including nursing excellence expectations, individualized care, bedside shift-to-shift reporting, rounding by nurse leadership, enhanced discharge process, and transition of care and communication improvements.

Honorable Mention Awards

· Development of a comprehensive quality assurance and performance improvement program in the Bariatric Center to meet new standards, review critical data in a timely manner, improve patient outcomes and align the center for re-accreditation.

· Implementation of multiple best practices, revised policies and procedures, and education for the Colby Center for Psychiatry staff as well as increased community awareness of mental health and suicide prevention.

The Peak of Excellence Award was created in 2010 and is aimed at recognizing an outstanding, interdisciplinary and innovative quality project designed to achieve measurable quality improvement outcomes that can be sustained over time. The Peak of Excellence Quality Award must be multidisciplinary with a diverse number of departments represented and involve an excellent team approach to quality improvement.