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Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital honored with top pediatric quality award for developing a culture of safety and eliminating serious safety events

Thursday, March 8, 2018

New Haven, CT (March 8, 2018) – Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital (YNHCH) has been named as the winner of the 2017 Pediatric Quality Award at the Children’s Hospital Association’s (CHA) Quality and Safety in Children’s Health Conference. The award recognizes the results of a four-year project to improve the reporting, recognition and interventions of serious safety events (SSEs) including a decrease in the rate of SSEs in the children’s hospital to zero in 2017. Additionally, the hospital saw a significant increase in the reporting of SSEs and avoided $3 million in SSEs-related health care costs. Matthew Grossman, MD, quality and safety officer for the children’s hospital led the effort.

“As leaders in quality improvement and the care of children, children’s hospitals continually innovate new standards of care, from the sickest infants to well children who may never be hospitalized, with the goal of better health outcomes for all children,” said Amy Wimpey Knight, chief operating officer, Children’s Hospital Assn. “Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital’s work in quality ensures they can proactively address any issues that might lead to patient harm. We are very proud to honor this important initiative with the Pediatric Quality Award.”

In 2012, Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital set its sights on being among the safest children’s hospitals in the country. But hospital staff had no way of knowing how safe or unsafe they were due to a cumbersome system that left many events of harm unreported. The staff needed a more reliable system for identifying and reporting safety events. Their interventions led to increased reporting, a more accurate understanding of safety gaps and an eye toward prevention. The initiative is illustrative of how culture change, leadership and effective intervention made a substantial impact on hospital safety.

“This is the single most important thing that we do,” said Rebecca Ciaburri, performance manager, YNHCH Quality and Safety. “Eliminating patient harm serves as the foundation for everything we strive for – but we cannot do it alone, safety is everyone’s job and it takes a fully engaged team and hospital to drive the success.”

“The staff at Yale New Haven demonstrated how dedication to culture change and a focus on event reporting and proactive interventions can transform the outcomes for an entire hospital,” said Peter Lachman, MD, CEO of the International Society for Quality in Health Care, who served as an award judge. “This is an example of the value of understanding the real-time state of safety in an organization and to plan for mitigation and reduction of risk prospectively.”

Awarded biennially by CHA, the Pediatric Quality Award honors successful quality improvement initiatives that significantly improve care for pediatric patients. The overall and category winners were selected from 110 entries by a panel of more than 30 quality and safety leaders from children’s hospitals and industry experts.

"Keeping our patients safe is the most fundamental part of what we do and we are continuing to strive for improvement. The success we have achieved is because of the dedication and commitment of the entire staff and faculty,” said Dr. Grossman, MD. “This has been a true team effort and the award is shared by the entire staff of our Children’s Hospital.”

Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital (YNHCH) offers Connecticut’s largest and most comprehensive array of pediatric services. With 212 licensed beds, YNHCH includes two neonatal intensive care units, a pediatric cardiac intensive care unit, a pediatric intensive care unit, a 24-hour pediatric emergency room and a pediatric surgery center. YNHCH, with campuses in New Haven and Bridgeport, is part of the nationally recognized Yale New Haven Hospital, a 1,541-bed not-for-profit teaching hospital affiliated with Yale School of Medicine. The Yale New Haven Hospital campuses and associated ambulatory sites are Magnet-designated by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. In addition to its inpatient units, YNHCH has three Pediatric Specialty Centers in New Haven and others in Norwalk, Greenwich, Trumbull and Old Saybrook to provide specialty care to children closer to their communities. www.ynhch.org

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