Between now and February 2016, surveyors from The Joint Commission (TJC) are expected to arrive at BWH to conduct a hospital-wide accreditation survey, which occurs every three years. TJC, which accredits and certifies more than 20,000 health care organizations and programs in the U.S., is recognized nationwide as a symbol of quality that reflects an organization’s commitment to meeting certain performance standards.
To be sure staff are ready for the visit, BWH’s Clinical Compliance team held a readiness fair in Cabot Atrium last month with informational tables where employees could ask questions and gather tips. The different tables included Billing Compliance, Emergency Management, Interpreter Services, Biomedical Engineering, Ambulatory Services, Nursing, Pharmacy, Patient Safety, Influenza Vaccine, Infection Control and Security.
“TJC standards are about patient safety and quality, and its mission is to help organizations be their best,” said Kelly Doorley, director of Clinical Compliance. “Our upcoming survey is an opportunity to demonstrate to TJC the excellent care we provide to patients every day. If TJC identifies opportunities for improvement, we will work hard to implement the necessary changes, as we are an organization that strives to continually improve.”
Doorley said that staff need to remain focused on the basics, including asking patients to confirm their name and date of birth or medical record number; labeling specimens in front of patients; following precaution signs outside of patient rooms; cleaning shared patient equipment with sanitizing wipes; and cleaning hands before entering and exiting a patient’s room.
According to TJC, the survey is data-driven, patient-centered and focused on evaluating actual care processes. The objective of the survey is not only to evaluate the organization, but to provide education and best practice guidance that will help to improve performance. The on-site survey focuses on continuous operational improvement in support of safe, high-quality care, treatment and services.
Laura Medina Martell, a medical assistant in Thoracic Surgery, appreciated the opportunity to test her TJC knowledge at the recent fair and prepare for the survey.
“It’s important to be ready,” Martell said. “The Joint Commission makes sure we are doing everything in our power to improve patient care and safety. I want to give patients the best care, so why would I not want to be ready for that? I’m thankful that TJC keeps us on our toes.”