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Centers of Excellence Primary Care Education

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Coordinating Center BLAST News Links                                                 February 07, 2013

The Winter Semi-Annual Evaluation Report template is posted on the Sharepoint in the "Shared Documents" folder in the Evaluation Sub-Directory. Please complete the document and upload to the CoEPCE Portal in "Progress Reports" by March 1st 2013. If you have questions about the report template, please call Jennifer Hayes at 415-656-6917. Thank you.

Performance Improvement in the Centers of Excellence in Primary Care Education (CoEPCE)

By Loren Carpenter, Brook Watts and Judith Bowen


Performance Improvement

One of the targeted domains for the Centers of Excellence in Primary Care Education (COEPCE) is "Performance Improvement". To advance collaborative learning in this area, the Coordinating Center established a work group with representatives from each of the five sites. By definition, Performance Improvement requires integration of curricular innovations with clinical practice re-design. Thus, site representatives include clinical educators, data managers, and clinical staff. We are particularly pleased that clinical nurse managers from each site have joined us in this work. In September 2012, work group members traveled to Portland, Oregon for a national face-to-face meeting. For this meeting, sites were encouraged to bring technical, administrative and clinical personnel to explore current processes and potential improvements. Each site team received current facility and VISN performance data to facilitate discussion of performance improvement processes and tools. From these discussions, four sub-groups were identified: a technical subgroup to address data access and registry functionality; a curricular mapping subgroup to explore common features across sites and explore opportunities to advance learning through application of knowledge concepts; an assessment subgroup to explore new ways of monitoring learning in this domain; and an improvement collaborative subgroup to identify a collaborative improvement initiative across sites for applying concepts to meaningful local work.

Cross-site improvement collaborative

The Veterans Health Administration is committed to providing timely and high-quality emergency care to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) patient population. Yet, when reviewing population data for each of the five sites, many COEPCE patients receive care in the Emergency Department (ED) for health problems and needs that could be addressed by the primary care team. In order to provide the best quality of care, the Office of Academic Affiliations, Centers of Excellence Primary Care Education has embarked upon a performance improvement initiative to reduce the number of these low acuity visits to VA EDs. Lead by Judith Bowen and Brook Watts, site representatives from Seattle, San Francisco, Boise, Cleveland and West Haven are working together to identify the frequency of and risk factors for these repeat ED visits, write aim statements for local process improvement, and determine measures of success. The goal of this collaborative project is to increase faculty experience and expertise locally through application of quality improvement processes and tools to a meaningful local problem of importance to VA medical center leadership. By engaging learners in the local work, we hope to also accelerate curricular innovations in the Performance Improvement domain.

The work group meets every Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. EST, rotating between technical, collaborative, curricular mapping, and assessment sub-groups. Group members are involved in one or more subgroups of their choice. The conference calls involve the solving of technical issues for data access, SQL coding for patient databases, assessment of learners and teaching techniques, development of curriculum and much more. Participants report back to their local Centers of Excellence for input, suggestions and uniformity.

In closing and on behalf of the Office of Academic Affiliations, we would like to thank all of the performance improvement members for their hard work and dedication. We look forward learning together!

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Coordinating Center Staff

Stuart Gilman
Program Director
562.826.5323

Kathryn Rugen
Nurse Consultant
312.569.6933

Judith Bowen
Physician Consultant
503.771.3560

Deborah Ludke
Administrative Officer
562.826.5492

Laural Traylor
Program Manager
Blast Editor
562.826-5974

Kim Uhl
Management Analyst
562.826.5996