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Safety, quality and patient experience experts gather for a day of learning

Photos of the conference
Sparq project teams spark creative, innovative ideas 

YNHHS employees were among the nearly 1,500 people who gathered recently for a dynamic day of learning about topics of interest to the entire healthcare community. Yale New Haven Health and Yale School of Medicine together hosted the first Safety, Quality and Experience Conference, May 31 at the Oakdale Theater in Wallingford. The event was a combination of YNHHS’ Joseph A. Zaccagnino Patient Safety and Clinical Quality Conference and Patient Experience Conference and the Yale Medicine Quality and Safety Symposium.

Keynote speaker Vivek H. Murthy, MD, the 19th surgeon general of the United States and a Yale School of Medicine graduate, discussed a range of topics, including clinician burnout and the importance of self-care, the ever-changing delivery of medical care and the fundamental value of building relationships with patients. Dr. Murthy also detailed the challenges of treating and encouraging patients and one another in the face of growing trauma in our communities and our world.

Susan Goszewski, senior manager, Rehabilitation Services, enjoyed the presentation from “America’s doctor,” stating, “he was very impressive – a broad thinker who touched on a variety of issues that are so relevant in the healthcare setting. While it is so easy to be fearful in our day-to-day lives, his talk encouraged us all to replace fear with love and move forward with purpose.”

Other conference presentations covered topics such as mindfulness and caring for the caregiver after an adverse event. Motivational speaker and author Tiffany Christensen of The Beryl Institute, a double-lung transplant recipient, also gave a moving presentation on the patient experience from a patient’s perspective. More than 225 teams submitted abstracts on projects aimed at improving safety, quality and the patient experience.

“After an intensive and highly competitive judging process, judges selected 50 posters to be highlighted and displayed at the conference,” said Richard Martinello, MD, medical director, Infection Prevention. “Selection criteria included clear implications for impacting quality, safety or the patient experience.”

Safety, Quality and Experience Conference team winners:

YNHH delivery network winner

Mary Solomon, RN

A YNHH team received the delivery network award for their Care Team Model project, in which a unit is divided into teams to allow for proximity of patient assignments and a mixed skilled-care team. After one year, increased HCAHPS and Press Ganey scores reflected improvements in communication, responsiveness and overall satisfaction. Pictured is Mary Solomon, RN. Missing from photo: Marcia Brooks, RN, and Taieesha Hill, RN.

YNHH category winner

qualconn category

A YNHH multidisciplinary team won the general performance improvement category for Using Multidisciplinary Teamwork to Reduce Hospital Acquired C. difficile. For three years, a performance improvement team monitored the results of several interventions to reduce hospital-acquired infection cases. The intervention results measured sustainability and standardized testing across campuses, including departments such as Pharmacy and Environmental Services, resulting in a 45 percent decrease in C. difficile rates over two years. Team members included, front row (l-r) is: Michelle Whitbread, Janet Kozakiewicz, Scott Sussman, MD, and Sonali Advani, MD. Back row (l-r): Jill Williams, Christina Murdzek, and Richard Martinello, MD. Missing from photo: David Peaper, MD, Michael Holmes and Jeffrey Topal, MD.

Conference photos