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Local hospitals’ quality projects showcased at State Capitol

Shown at the Illinois Health and Hospital Association’s (IHA)
Quality Advocacy Showcase in the Illinois State Capitol April 3 with Senator Christopher Belt of the 57th District is Kimberly
Rickhoff, RN, assistant nurse manager of Telemetry B Unit at HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in O’Fallon, who highlighted infection prevention process to reduce Clostridium difficile (C. diff) infection rates.
(Submitted Photo)

A number of quality improvement initiatives undertaken by HSHS Southern Illinois Division (SID) hospitals were on display in the State Capitol earlier this month as part of the Illinois Health and Hospital Association’s (IHA) Quality Advocacy Showcase. These clinical leaders met with legislators to share how their initiatives have benefited patients, families and communities while reducing health care costs. 

The HSHS Southern Illinois Division includes HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in O’Fallon, HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital in Effingham, HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Breese, HSHS Holy Family Hospital in Greenville and HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Highland. 

HSHS leaders were among over 100 hospital and health system leaders from across Illinois who met with legislators about their efforts to improve patient care and safety. In sum, 90 hospitals and health systems showcased their improvement projects at the event.

HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital highlighted their infection prevention process to reduce Clostridium difficile (C. diff) infection rates through appropriate testing. A multidisciplinary team instituted intervention including a Situation, Background, Assessment, Recommendation (SBAR) tick sheet to guide bedside nursing; secondary review by Infection Prevention and Pharmacy on a daily basis; Infectious Disease consults as needed; and having the ordering physician or nurse practitioner determine when to test for C. diff. 

Other HSHS Southern Illinois Division hospitals showcased the positive impact of their individual quality initiatives:

• HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital shared their social determinants of health initiative to increase screening for colon cancer, a highly treated cancer when caught early.

• HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital Breese shared their infection prevention initiative to reduce surgical site infections by deploying an infection control risk assessment at every level of facility construction projects.

• HSHS Holy Family Hospital shared their proactive approach to decreasing patient harm events through their “Stop the Line/Good Catch Program.”

• HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital Highland highlighted their care coordination process where they screen all patients on admission to assess if the patient qualifies for end-of-life care or requires an acute care admission.

IHA’s Quality Advocacy Showcase, in its fourth year, visually demonstrates the work of physicians, nurses, quality improvement leaders and hospital administrators to develop and implement solutions to improve care. IHA produced one 30-by-42-inch poster per hospital or health system project for the event.

“The Showcase gives hospital leaders and frontline staff an important opportunity to share their efforts to advance quality care,” said IHA President and CEO A.J. Wilhelmi. “It’s essential that policymakers and elected officials see how Illinois hospitals are doing more to serve their patients and communities—through innovation and practical strategies that improve outcomes.”

Last year, St. Elizabeth’s was also awarded an ‘A’ rating from The Leapfrog Group’s fall 2018 Hospital Safety Guide for their committed to providing quality patient care and proactively implementing initiatives to continue to elevate their quality and patient safety processes. Only 43 hospitals in Illinois received an ‘A’ safety grade.