Super users crusade for safety and quality

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Private hospitals are committed to quality and safety, and have developed a new benchmarking service that will build on their excellence in health care delivery.

The Australian Private Hospitals Association (APHA) has partnered with Chappell Dean to collect core outcome measures and create a benchmarking service for APHA member hospitals. The data will be fed back to participating hospitals to implement quality improvement if required.

APHA and Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care Board Member Christine Gee said the process was important to recognise what hospitals are doing well and where they can improve.

“Even the best systems can be improved. We know our hospitals perform well and have and excellent safety and quality record. It will be exciting to have the ability to prove our performance, but also to recognise as a collective of hospitals of different sizes and medical focus where we could put more attention and see the results of that come through.

She said the first round of ‘super user’ training with the Chappell Dean team had been successful.

“It is great to be working with the team at Chappell Dean, they have significant expertise in the area of health quality and safety collection and benchmarking.

The large hospital group Ramsay Health Care joined with smaller and regional hospitals – the Friendly Society Private Hospital (the Friendlies) and the Bays to undertake training.

The Friendlies Director of Clinical Services, Sue Day attended the training and said she was concerned about the training at the start as she does not have a technical background, but soon realised she had little too worry about.

“The guys from Chappell Dean were very professional and had developed some great tools to help step us through the data. This meant that we could really start to understand potential clinical issues by hypothesising and then drilling into various aspects of the information to test the assumptions.

“I am confident that the information provided in the benchmarking report will enable a much greater understanding of our business,” said Ms Day.

Ms Gee said the Super User can now identify opportunities for the hospital to perform at its best from data reports. Large, small, mental health or medical surgical hospitals, the data can be used to improve services.

“This is just the beginning of this service, it’s early days for us, but I am looking forward to what this can offer our hospitals and our patients and our commitment to the highest levels of health care delivery in Australia,” Ms Gee said.

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