In today's era of an ever-changing healthcare environment, it is critically important that physicians understand society's expectation for them to be advocates and leaders of an improved system of care. The residency program puts an emphasis on quality improvement, patient safety and high-value care, with the goal of having every graduate well versed in the concepts of improvement sciences, process mapping, and how to lead important changes to improve the delivery of healthcare to our patients. As part of this commitment, we have a dedicated Chief Resident of Quality and Patient Safety (CRQPS).
This Chief Resident serves as an important leader for department and hospital level improvement efforts. In addition, the CRQPS is integrally involved in providing the residents with a dedicated curriculum on quality improvement and patient safety.
Starting in the intern year, quality improvement concepts are taught during a series of education units that are part of the ambulatory block. Interns learn to identify a problem from their own clinical experience and take part in the early stages of intervention planning. Residents can take further action on their project with mentorship from faculty, and using the Plan-Do-Study-Act model to perform rapid cycle improvements toward sustainable change. A number of resident projects have been presented in national forums and as publications.
Patient safety practices are promoted throughout the program, to allow residents to learn how to observe health care delivery through a lens of safety and improvement. The patient safety conference is created and presented by residents who review adverse events in the hospital and conduct root cause analyses. Action items are generated for improvement, and worked on in a multi-disciplinary setting. Residents also receive feedback regarding best practices in documentation and handoff. For those hoping to gain further hands-on experience, the Patient Safety Elective provides an in-depth look at how a hospital works. Participants in this elective have the opportunity to become a patient safety expert and consultant, collecting reports from colleagues about patient care incidents and attending a variety of high-level meetings on how system improvements take shape. The safety resident performs safety consults on reported incidents, working to identify the various contributors to these events and implementing system-level fixes to the problems that led to the near miss or medical error. The action plans and remedies frequently provide residents with an authentic role in inter-professional collaborations that lead to safer patient care.