Avera Sacred Heart participates in QUEST quality initiative

Avera Sacred Heart participates in QUEST quality initiative
Avera Sacred Heart Hospital, as well as three other Avera hospitals, is taking its vision of delivering world-class health care to new heights through the QUEST: High Performing Hospitals program. QUEST – which stands for Quality, Efficiency, Safety and Transparency – is a three year voluntary program where participating hospitals and health systems work together to develop and share best practices for improving performance and raising the bar in the areas of quality, safety and efficiency while at the same time reducing health care costs.

"Avera Sacred Heart has already taken great strides to deliver high-quality care and reduce costs for the patients we serve. Through the QUEST program, we will be able to raise the bar on that level of service by partnering with other leading hospitals who are equally passionate about this quality movement," said Avera Sacred Heart CEO Pam Rezac.

The QUEST program measures the following five key areas of hospital performance including:


Mortality ratio: measuring against a risk-adjusted model to attain the goal of eliminating all avoidable deaths.

Appropriate care: measuring the percentage of patients receiving "perfect care" using nationally recognized evidence-based measures.

Efficiency: Measuring adjusted cost per discharge, including all costs associated with each episode of acute care.

Harm avoidance: preventing things such as health care associated infections and adverse drug events.

Patient satisfaction: utilizing patient satisfaction measures to improve the patient experience related to cost, quality and safety.

As part of the three-year program, the first year will focus on mortality, appropriate care and efficiency. In year two, the program will analyze harm avoidance and patient satisfaction. Premier will analyze the data and facilitate sharing of best practices for top-performing hospitals. Avera Sacred Heart is one of over 200 hospitals and health systems that have expressed interest in the study.

The QUEST program builds on the success of the Premier/CMS Hospital Quality Incentive Demonstration project (HQID) – a highly successful pay-for-performance initiative currently at its half-way point by Premier and the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services. Avera Sacred Heart has been involved with HQID study since its inception and continues to be among the top performing hospitals in the areas of acute myocardial infarction (AMI), heart failure pneumonia and hip and knee replacement.

The study also builds on the momentum of hospitals focused on harm reduction in the Institute for HealthCare Improvement's (IHI) 5 Million Lives Campaign, a voluntary initiative to protect patients from 5 million incidents of medical harm over the next years (December 2006-December 2008). Avera Sacred Heart is actively participating in this campaign as well as the previous 100,000 Lives national initiative.

Avera Sacred Heart is committed to putting consumer education initiatives that provide meaningful information on cost and quality to make better health care decisions.

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